We went on a 21 day road trip from the Basque Country all the way up to the Faroe Islands and it was the best type of adventure to heal our minds and hearts. These are some of the memories from this wonderful place.
Yesterday was the first day that we saw the sun here in the Basque Country ever since the beginning of February. It's been cold and snowing and I haven't really shot that much lately. Sunrise is after I get to work and sunset is before I finish my last class of the day, so the light hasn't been great when I was available to go out exploring either. But somehow, I still managed to get a few shots that I'm proud of to share here.
The first two photos are from a rainy morning back in December when we still had a few fall colors up in the trees. Same as the third, which was taken going down from a mountain pass when I saw the fog rolling in through the pine tree forest and I had to stop on the side of the road to grab a couple of shots.
The next two were taken sometime in January by chance. I remember finishing my first class in the morning, and while I was on my way home I saw that this forest was the only area covered by fog, since it's not too far from where I live, I decided to check out what the atmosphere was like. I recently got the Fuji 35mm f2, which in full frame terms means a 50mm. As you can see from my work, I love to shoot wide, and I mostly shoot with either the 16mm f1.4 (24mm) or with the 23mm f1.4 (35mm). So the 35mm has been attached to my little XT10 in order to learn how use this focal length and it was also, the only lens I had with me on that day. Finding a good composition in this forest was really difficult, because this focal length not only is narrow and probably works better for street shots or portraits, but I'm not used to framing like this either. I somehow managed to get a couple of photos that I'm really happy with, due to their misteryous look.
These next two photos of the river were some of my favorite from January. I remember it was early in the morning and I drove up to the mountain in search of a cool view from our town below. As I was going up I decided to take a road that I had never driven before but that it looked like there could be something worth photographing. I was right. It was a misty morning and the sun was coming up from the side of this beautiful river. The light was incredible and I spent quite sometime wandering around the sides of the river trying to get some photos, again with the 35mm. I didn't get much because it was way too cold and I was freezing.
Also back in January I went to another forest where I usually go to and where I actually took the first two photos of this set. Another foggy and cold morning where my car got too dirty on those muddy roads but where I walked around this lovely path in seca of some compositions.
And finally the last five shots that I just took earlier this week. These photos were taken 200m away from one another and only 10minutes away from home. I remember walking down that forest path once before, sometime last year, but it never looked that good. It was really cold, and the sun was getting through those pine trees and it looked so beautiful.
I was able to get a nice photo of the back country road before the fog was gone and the sun lit the forest, which also ended up being one of my favorite shots I've taken in quite a while.
*I've added this photo to my print gallery in case someone wants to get one. I have already made a couple of test prints and they look gorgeous. Also, I think I'll make a new editing video to show how I made this, let me know if that is something that interests you.
Hope you like these and their behind the scenes stories!
Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
Sometimes it's difficult to stay inspired. This happens to me quite often when we are not traveling to other places where everything seems to be more exciting than what we have at home. Sometimes, I don't see anything that catches my attention, because everything is familiar, same kind of roads, same forests, always the same places. This feeling became worse with the beginning of good weather and cloudless, blue skies. If you follow my work and have read previous blog entries, you will already know that I like cloudy, dramatic and foggy days in my photographs. So this led me to leave my camera at home for the last month and a half or so.
This week, I really needed to change that attitude and I forced myself to bring the camera in my backpack all day long. Usually with my work schedule, I often have a few minutes either early in the morning or late in the evening to head to the mountains and make a couple of photos. And that's what I've been doing for the last few days. I also decided to use the 17-40mm lens that I hadn't used since last August, which has been really fun.
So these are some of the shots I made on Monday, when I went to wander around a little path I've seen over and over for so many years but I had never actually explored it. I loved coming across all that fern and wonderful leading lines. I also think it could be an interesting location for some portraits. What do you say?
The next set was taken yesterday morning when I drove to the very familiar road (by now in my photos) on the way to the mountain near my hometown. I had just finished teaching my first class at 8.30am when I decided to take a chance and see what I could find. I was surprised to see that the morning mist was still lingering, and as I walked up the narrow back country road the sun started burning through all the fog creating a beautiful ambiance.
These aren't by any means the greatest photos of all time, but for me they are good enough to make me feel better and to know that each day can be an exciting and beautiful day even if it is photographing the same familiar places only a few minutes away from home.
Guess what I have in my backpack today, too? I'm taking my bike this evening, hoping to make it on time for sunset to a little river I know of, only a short ride away from home.
I texted Oihana on Saturday night asking whether she would be up for a quick shoot the following morning. She agreed immediately, so I packed my gear in the Kanken and decided to bring along my analog camera with Portra 400, because my resolution for this year is to shoot more film. I woke up to -7ºC and put on the warmest clothes I had on my closet, drove to her apartment and went to the forest to shoot some portraits. Wildflowers were covered in frost and puddles were frozen. Yep, it was cold indeed, but the light was beautiful, and totally worth it.
I'm currently looking for people to go on more shoots like these. If you are interested, head over to the contact page and let's plan something wonderful and fun!
The first time we were in Iceland was back in the summer of 2014. We went on a three week roadtrip around the country and slept on our sleeping bags in the most incredible places we had ever seen. Right there, we promised to ourselves that we would one day go back in winter to see it in a different light and wild conditions.
A few months ago, we just talked about the idea once again, and started looking at flights to Reikjavik for the last week of 2016. We found them for a really cheap price and we bought them on that same night. We rented a 4x4, hired a tour to visit an ice cave and booked our hotels for 4 nights. It was a really short trip compared to the first time we were there... but it was absolutely worth every minute of it.
Unfortunately, the conditions were really extreme for the first two days. Our ice cave tour got cancelled due to the caves being flooded after a really rainy day. Instead, we visited other places we hadn't planned to go to. It wasn't as cold as we expected. The minimum temperature we experienced was -9ºC, which wasn't that bad with all the clothing we had on. Two pairs of thick socks, two pants, several layers of shirts, a sweater, a jacket and a raincoat. Oh! and really awesome gloves, hats and mountain boots. All essencial to survive the crazy conditions we lived on those days. With 100% of humidity even my 6D died for a few hours after getting soaked in the canyon of Fjaðrárgljúfur (ha! try pronouncing that!). So glad I had my little Fuji X100T with me while I dried the DSLR with the car heating. That was a really important lesson I learnt: always bring more than one camera, ALWAYS.
The wind was really strong... about 40mph/60kmh and it literally threw us to the ground several times, specially in Stokksnes, where it was almost impossible to photograph. The light though was spectacular, it changed every minute but it felt like a constant sunrise/sunset all along the 6 hours of daylight we had each day.
On our last day there, we went in search of the northern lights, but we were not able to find them, so again, we promised to go back over and over again to this wonderful place we love so dearly. Next time we are taking our camper van on a ferry to the Faroe Islands, staying there for a few days and then hopping to Iceland for yep, another awesome adventure!
These are some of the photographs I’ve taken on this journey. I hope you like them and make you book your flight to Iceland right now!
Oh! and Happy New Year! Hope it's an adventurous one!
*All taken with a Canon 6D +24-70mm 2.8 and Fujifilm X100T