photography on the road

beniarres road

besides art another of my passion is photography, meanwhile some consider it more a science than an art… I believe the right amount of both areas is needed to get the right shot. To take photos, see photo-exhibitions, read photography magazines and from time to time take related workshops that can help to improve my technique are some of the things that keep me connected to photography.

Why today coming up with this topic? Lately some coicidently similar projects came to my hands about photography and road trips. There is also a personal project on the back of my head, a long time now, I wanna right a book with some past photographies, but somehow there is always something more important to do, you know that feeling,right?

The book would be a biographical story. Since I was 5 years, my dad used to take me with him to some of his work trips. Very special trips…we woke up around 4am in the morning took our homemade lunch boxes, and no matter if it was raining, snowing or hellish hot, we got on the truck to see his many many km away from home. That’s how I started to like travelling I guess. At that time photography was not an issue for me, but now when I look back, it would have been a nice road trip photo-documentary. Anyway,  it is never too late to be who you might have been, as Mrs. George Eliot says.

the japan photoproject

Coming back to the things that flashed by this week that are going to be part of this post. In Barcelona (Spain) my second hometown, a project  exhibits in CaixaForum, called “the japan photoproject“. This is about two photographers collaborating and working together on a photography documentary  exploring the Japanese society through two different perspectives: the point of view of a Japanese native and the point of view of a Westerner. Almost 42.000km on a van travelling around Japan and taking photos compelling information to make the interactive project real and enjoyable for viewers. On the website you can find not only black and white snapshots, also videos, a route map and an interactive sample of the edited book.

the japan photoproject

The aesthetics of a road trip always captured my attention, it has something infinite and temporary at the same time, with a lot of room for imagination. A mother and his child, a fugitive, a business man on a long trip, a killer, a group of friends with loud music on the car radio and all four windows wide open. That last one remembers me to Jack Kerouac‘s novel “on the road“, which recently has been adapted to the big screen. Personally I prefer the book, and the film doesn’t make any good to the actual story.

The magic of capturing a trip has been enchanting for many photographers, a famous one like Henri Cartier-Bresson who loves to incorporate movement and story to his pics, turned his gaze to North-America. In the early 1940s he embarked in two road trips to the North-American South. The result an astonishing collaboration between Henri and Walker Evans, an american photographer that is collected in a book “Photographing America“. Another brilliant coetaneous photographer is Robert Frank that with the publication of The Americans, it featured 83 of Frank’s photographs taken in America in 1955 and 1956.

Magnum photos. USA. Arizona, 1947 by Henri Cartier-Bresson


And as in all good road trips, music cannot be left apart. The right music choice makes the special moment of sitting in the car, with your elbow out of the window and feeling the warm summer breeze on your face. Meanwhile you listen to some smooth beats that makes your mind be absent of the actual trail. For some people it is the best moment of the day, no mater how long your trip is, if you are going east or west…you know you will be home soon.

My music recommendation for this post “route 66” by Nat King Cole.


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