fotos

Photos: Portraits of Biking in Patagonia, Piedra Parada, Chubut, Argentina

Friday January 31st, 2014 06:10 PM

Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org

The first thing that many people pack in their holiday bag is a camera. It certainly was for me for many years as I went about recording happy times in exotic places. My wife remembers how, even on our honeymoon, I’d be up at the crack of dawn to snap photos in the best light.

But when I turned professional that changed. Holidays are a time to rest from work; to recharge batteries; think about the ‘big picture’, perhaps. And that, for me, means a break from photography. I’m happy to make do with just my camera phone or an old, small, light camera that the kids can muck about with on the beach.

There are exceptions, however, and a trip to Patagonia last November one of them. How could I not take at least one camera? And I was glad I did, if just for the three days I spent cycling near Piedra Parada in Chubut, Argentina. Mario Gadda, a friend who runs Tracción a Sangre cycle tours in Peninsula Valdés, had told me about the incredible desert scenery of the Chubut valley, exemplified by Piedra Parada, a 300m tall chunk of lava from an extinct volcano. The landscape reminded me of Arizona, but without the tourists.

For me, among a group of cyclists, it was also a chance to take some photos of people doing what they love, my favourite type of portrait photography.

Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org Biking in Patagonia, Chubut, Argentina. Photo by James Sturcke | www.sturcke.org

Wedding at La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja

Friday April 20th, 2012 03:28 PM

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

I shot my first wedding of the year last weekend when Argiñe and Pedro celebrated their marriage in La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. The photos are a bit different than normal as they were commissioned by the restaurant owner, Ángel, for his new website.

Accordingly I spent more time than normal taking photos of the reception rooms before the couple and guests arrived. I also lingered more than usual in the kitchen which had the unexpected but highly welcome advantage in that they fed me!

My thanks to Argiñe and Pedro for “dancing” with me in the five-minute shoot we had together – you can see from the resulting photos what a relaxed, fun couple they are.

Apart from the photos for the website, I’ll also give Ángel an album and a short video slideshow to show to future wedding clients.

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

Boda en La Vieja Bodega, Casalarreina, La Rioja. Foto: James Sturcke Fotografia | www.sturcke.org

La Rioja’s chefs at Delicatto restaurant, Logroño

Tuesday March 13th, 2012 11:13 AM

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

There’s a well used and rarely wrong saying in English that too many chefs spoil the cooking. So you might think that getting cooks from eight of La Rioja’s choicest restaurants to work in the same kitchen is a recipe for disaster, even if it is for a charity dinner.

I spent a decent chunk of Friday night in the kitchen of Delicatto Restaurant in Logroño waiting to see if sparks would fly. The chefs, from Chef Nino, La Vieja Bodega, El Rincón del Vino, La Galería, Marisol ArriagaEl Arriero, Café RiojaEl Portalón, prepared a series of tapas and dishes for over 160 diners. There was no shortage of action in the kitchen but, thankfully, all the energy was positive.

The evening, organised by the Riojan restaurant association Ricamesa, raised €6,000 for Caritas, which fights poverty and exclusion. I’ve put a gallery of photos from the evening here.

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Delicatto, Logroño

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Restaurante Delicatto, Logroño, La Rioja

Symmetry Cris & Rafa’s wedding, Ezcaray, La Rioja

Sunday August 28th, 2011 10:50 AM

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

There are many ways to add elegance and interest to images through the creative use of composition but, to my mind, one of the most effective is through symmetry and repetition. There’s something that the human brain likes about seeing a reflection or pattern in things.

I took these shots at a wedding in Ezcaray, La Rioja, in July and, looking over them again in recent days, was struck by how many of my favourite photos gained poise and balance through symmetry. I like the photo above of Cristina because of the beautiful light and also how it conveys the notion of a bride standing in the doorway of the family home about to step into a new chapter of life.

But it’s her refection in the mirror as she looks back over her shoulder which finishes the picture and adds a something a bit special.

Both in that picture and the first one below, it’s a doorframe which helps separate the different parts of the image. In the second photo the symmetry comes from the fact that Cristina’s mother and sister are both bent over in a similar way as they get ready before the ceremony. You can work out for yourself the symmetry in the third image!

You don’t want to overplay the symmetry card – it would destroy the element of surprise – but a few choice images help add panache and humour to a wedding album.

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

Boda Ezcaray, La Rioja, España

The opening of Tondeluna, Logroño, La Rioja

Sunday June 19th, 2011 02:39 PM

Francis Paniego restaurante, Logroño

When you go out for lunch in an English pub it’s not uncommon to find yourself seated at a large table which you share with complete strangers.

The English, being a polite people, tend to offer an initial greeting to whomever they are sitting next to and then ignore them stoically. Sometimes that is how it remains for the rest of the meal. However, other times, particularly after a pint or two, an innocuous few words such as “Would you be kind enough to pass the salt?” lead to conversation and before you know it you’re friends for life. Or at least until the end of the coffee.

Communal eating is not normal in La Rioja, but Ezcaray’s Michelin-starred chef, Francis Paniego, is trying it out at Tondeluna, a new venture in Logroño with his wife Luisa Barrachina and Echaurren chef David González. They effectively are bringing some of their most successful dishes from the famous Echaurren restaurants to the region capital.

Press and public interest has been immense in the opening few days with the restaurant packed out. And hopefully enough people will have enjoyed the communal experience that they’ll be tempted back again and again.

Francis Paniego restaurante, Logroño

Francis Paniego restaurante, Logroño

Francis Paniego restaurante, Logroño

Francis Paniego restaurante, Logroño

Francis Paniego restaurante, Logroño