One Day That Summer: The Dune, Hossegor

Delphine Jouandeau photography 
To celebrate summer, in the course of the following months I will be collaborating with various photographers and photography collectors to bring you exclusive stories from behind the lens. Whether travel photography or pictures from the movie sets, One Day That Summer is an invitation to discovery, to open your mind and eyes, to live life like you stole it.
 
 
Sometimes, or most times, I think you should accept that you love a piece of art without having to explain why. But many times, just like in the case of the movies I love and write about, I try to give a reasoning. In our world today, when we can so easily “like” tens and hundreds of images every day, I think it’s shallow to just say you “like” something, especially when that something is such an elaborate creative process, often with incredible stories behind, as in the case of a film or a photograph. It’s also a sign of respect towards an artist’s work to try to be a little more accurate. I am bringing this up because when I first saw, and every time since then, Delphine Jouandeau’s photograph above, I thought that this was the kind of photo that didn’t need any words. I could frame it, hang it on a wall, know this is art and would be perfectly comfortable to just say that I love it… but, at the same time, I wouldn’t. Because it is not every day that I come across a picture that leaves me the impression of a sculpture in sand, inspiring a strong sense of witnessing, “seeing” the passing of time. And when Delphine told me the story behind it, I could understand why.

I discovered Delphine Jouandeau’s photography when I came across RingTheBelle some time ago – she makes a great team with Florence Donné – and was happy to find out that her incredible body of work includes landscape and portraiture (two mediums I am particularly fond of), among others. In our interview, Delphine goes behind the scenes of the photo that I love, talks about the creative power of Paris and opens up about her work, for which I am particularly grateful to her.
 
 

“To me, photography is like meditation.
It’s like a dance with a partner, a connection
between two souls. This is pure love.
You share something big with your subject
and the space around. Even while shooting a landscape,
you just forget about yourself,
let it go and be part of life.”

 
 
What’s the story behind this photo?
That would be the story of a friendship. I was in vacation in Hossegor, France, with my best friend, Lola, in 2005. At this time, I used to shoot her a lot. I’ve learnt what photography means to me thanks to her. She was patient enough to let me improve my skills. Also, that was the time I really discovered how important was the connection between the artist and the model and the space around them (the room in between them and around).

We had spent the day upon the dunes of Hossegor, all by ourselves, lying on the sand… doing nothing but being… The purpose of the journey was to shoot some portraits of Lola, but when the inspiration popped, we changed our plans to take some pictures of Lola walking on the dunes. After a little while, Lola sat down on the edge of the dune and started to slip off the dune. I didn’t think too much about it when I took the photo, but now we have this nice testimony of the passage of my friend on the dune. It’s quite symbolic to me. It’s like a body print of my friend on the space.

Do you always carry a camera with you?
It depends of my mood, honestly. Most of the time I carry a camera cause that’s what I do for a living. But I appreciate a nice walk in Paris or in the countryside without necessarily seeking to get back with a good picture. I like to get inspired by life without a hidden agenda.

What led you to photography?
I’ve always loved images. I’ve started studying cinema without knowing precisely what I wanted to do. Writing stories… being a cameraman… a director… I didn’t have a clue. The only thing I knew was that I wanted to express myself… but I didn’t know by which means. And then, by chance, someday a student from my school asked me to take some pictures for a movie he was creating. The sensation I got from that experience was very strong. So, I guess Photography found me at that point. One year after that experience, I was studying Photography. And I have never stopped since then.

Take or make a photograph? Do you wait for a good photo? Are there times when you simply witness the moment without taking/making any picture?
There’s a fine line between taking and making… Before a shooting, you can work on what you would like to do… what kind of ambiance you would like to create… but at the end of the day, you must deal with what really happens during the shooting. The encounter between me and the subject, or between me and the model is quite unpredictable. When I do portraits or nudes, I like to let my model free to live the way they feel at that moment. It brings a lot of uncertainty… but it allows the model to remain genuine and I guess this is what I like the most. I don’t really expect the model to behave in a certain way… I’ll be there whatever happens, and I’ll catch whatever makes sense to me. There’s always something happening – even when nothing is planned. Especially when nothing was planned.

In other words, you try to start a photo shoot without any preconceived idea or plan. Do you try to get to know someone a little before you do a portrait or a nude? What is the most challenging thing about photographing a nude?
Usually, I take pictures of friends or people I met within my network of friends, so we spend time before the shooting while we talk about ourselves, our lives, etc. Sometimes I meet someone for a shooting and we spend 2 hours talking vs. 20 min taking pictures! To me, the most important thing is to tell a story – through a personality, a gaze, a mindset – that genuinely talks about life and that I can share with people though my pictures. That’s why I like nude… I can work on the body and it won’t lie – on the contrary, outfits carry too much information.

What’s important about nudes is to give the model a lot of freedom, they must be very comfortable and behave without any constraints or fear. Freedom is the key. Because what I’m looking for is not replicable… you cannot make it up either – it’s just a moment of pure sincerity that fades away in an instant. After years working on nudes, I realized that the body is not the subject of the photos… The body is just an echo of what’s happening inside. You’ve got to follow the echo!

What is the most fundamental ingredient in your pictures? How close do you have to get, physically, emotionally, mentally, in order to get a good shot? What do you aim to communicate through your photographic stories?
The light and the relation with my model are fundamental ingredients.

To me, photography is like meditation. You get in a new world and you don’t really know what’s going on there, but when the link is created, it’s like you’ve touched something, and you cannot really explain what you do or what you see. But you know it’s there. It’s like a dance with a partner, a connection between two souls. This is pure love. You share something big with your subject and the space around. Even while shooting a landscape, you just forget about yourself, let it go and be part of life. I guess that’s what I’m seeking, this intimate communion with my subject. What I try to communicate is this inner life movement… the feeling of existence… Portraits and landscapes are means to share this feeling.

Do you only photograph people you are interested in? Does their profession, or what they stand for matter? Because your photos go beyond physical beauty.
Yes, when it comes to my personal work, I only photograph people I’m interested in.

I’m not interested in perfection though. It’s not about pure physical beauty – it’s all about truth – which is the ultimate beauty, because it’s organic, it’s universal and it’s genuine. That’s why it is important to me to know my models. Cause that’s the only way you can overcome the appearances and dig into the deeper personality and beauty of your model. When you share enough time with someone you care, you start to get a sense of their inner truth. I guess what I’m trying to do with my work is to show and share this sense, because it leads to the inner truth of my models.

You live in Paris. What is the best part about living in Paris and which you would miss if you lived anywhere else in the world?
What I like the most in Paris is probably the access to culture. It is very easy to enter a museum and get inspiration from art. But art is everywhere. Simply by walking along the streets, you’ll find pieces of art from Le Corbusier, Guimard, Buren, Rodin, etc. Besides art, if I had to leave I think I’d miss my friends and my taichi ’s master.

How does Paris influence you creatively?
Living in Paris is inspiring. Knowing that so many artists from all over the world came over here to live their art in this city is a big deal. It’s like a cycle… Every artist, writer, musician must come to Paris at least for a while to get inspired and to inspire the world in return. It’s hard to describe. I guess the Parisian lifestyle is kind of unique as well. People like to meet up after work to get wine and cigarettes at the terraces… A decent amount of time is allocated to talk and share precious time. It has this unique “art de vivre” that I enjoy. It’s a cool city to live in.

What is the most rewarding thing about your being a photographer?
Being free and being allowed to share with the world my views about life.

Your work includes artists’ portraits, kids’ fashion, lifestyle photography. Do you approach differently the various mediums you photograph?
I’d say it’s always kind of the same process to me. I like this encounter with people. I like to discover what they have to tell – with or without words. Although when it comes to kids’ fashion, I’m no longer alone, so that’s slightly different. I work with a staff of stylist, makeup artist, hair stylist, and the kids… So, it’s more like a teamwork… everyone comes up with their own ideas. It is pleasant to get others’ insights. Also, kids are really spontaneous and genuine, so they often help me out in the process. Also, I like to have Florence Donné beside me during the lifestyle shootings for RingTheBelle. She’s definitely adding her own touch to the process.

What is your favourite moment of the day for shooting? Do you swear by the “golden hour”?
Best moment is probably when I feel what I’m doing (she winks). I don’t really swear by the “golden hour” – I really let it go and see what happens. When it makes sense, somehow, this is my favorite moment of the day…

If you could be anywhere in the world right now (old or new location), preparing to take/make a photo, where would you want to be?
In the Lot, an area in Southern France.

You can keep up with Delphine’s photography and work on her website, Delphine Jouandeau, and on Instagram: @delphinejouandeau / @delphine_lifestyle_photography

 
For more photographer interviews and stories, click here: One Day That Summer

Posted by classiq in Interviews, One day that summer, Photography | | Leave a comment

Chronicles, Volume One

The Chronicles Bob Dylan 

“Creativity has much to do with experience, observation and imagination, and if any one of those elements is missing,
it doesn’t work.”

 
You could say that I was challenged to read Bob Dylan’s autobiography. Sure I have listened to his albums, went to one of his concerts, and have always appreciated his talent and the way he can carry a tune and a lyric, but I have never been a fan. That’s the plain truth. And I’ll tell you this: I was even puzzled when he won the Nobel prize last year. But my brother was, too, and he is a fan. In fact, it was my brother who suggested I should read Chronicles: Volume One. “I think you’d like it,” he said. I did. More than I had expected. And although there are still other musical autobiographies that I loved more, like Born to Run, Life and especially Morrissey’s, I was relieved that I liked this one, too. I was relieved that Chronicles is so honest.

Sometimes rough, sometimes brilliant, the book is largely an evocation of Dylan’s first year in New York city (1961), with flashbacks to his boyhood in Minnesota, with the chapters in the middle concerning the making of two later albums (I was hoping they were about Highway 61 or Blonde on Blonde, but they’re not, and maybe that’s how it should be). The writer switches from one chapter of his life to another in a meandering narrative – wasn’t looking for anything too conventional anyway – and yet it all hangs together. I didn’t expect Dylan to divulge too much and he doesn’t. That’s perfectly fine with me. It isn’t the kind of book written to set the record straight or tell the real story of how things happened. Bob Dylan shares his observations, inspirations, crisis, an amazingly detailed journey of a man, of an artist finding his own voice – a journey involving loss as well as discovery. And given the many creative changes during his career, one of the most influential cultural figures of the 20th century, this is quite a journey to get to partake in.
 

“The road out would be treacherous, and I didn’t know
where it would lead but I followed it anyway. It was a strange world
ahead that would unfold, a thunderhead of a world with jagged lightning edges.
Many got it wrong and never did get it right. I went straight into it.
It was wide open. One thing for sure, not only was it not run by God,
but it wasn’t run by the devil either.”


 

“There was nothing easygoing about my the folk songs I sang.
They weren’t friendly or ripe with mellowness.
They didn’t come gently to the shore,
I guess you could say they weren’t commercial. …
They were my preceptor and guide into some
altered consciousness of reality, some different republic,
some liberated republic. …
I just thought of mainstream culture as as lame as hell and a big trick.”


 

“As far as I knew I didn’t belong to anybody then or now.
I had a wife and children whom I loved more than anything else in the world.
I was trying to provide for them, keep out of trouble,
but the big bugs in the press kept promoting me as the mouthpiece,
spokesman, or even conscience of a generation. That was funny.
All I’d ever done was sing songs that were dead straight
and expressed powerful new realities.
I had very little in common and knew even less about a generation
that I was supposed to be the voice of.”

photo by me

Posted by classiq in Books | | Leave a comment

One Day That Summer: Lesvos, Greece

Interview with Claire Lloyd Lesvos Greece 
To celebrate summer, in the course of the following months I will be collaborating with various photographers and photography collectors to bring you exclusive stories from behind the lens. Whether travel photography or pictures from the movie sets, One Day That Summer is an invitation to discovery, to open your mind and eyes, to live life like you stole it.
 
Live simply. Be present. See the beauty in the everyday. Embrace the need to stand still. Find the freedom to move forward with your creativity. Australian author, photographer and designer Claire Lloyd seems to have found all these answers when she followed on a chance encounter and listened to her heart and moved to a small village on the Greek island of Lesvos. In her book, My Greek Island Home, Claire paints a very honest, heartfelt, authentic image of village life in Greece, the village that changed her life. It’s a life that demonstrates a fullness of simplicity and wholesome endeavors. It’s the Greece I have come to love throughout my visits there. As for her photography, the best way I can describe it is that it has soul. Claire has an eye for beauty and a visual curiosity for all things natural, which I believe comes from her love of the ordinary in the everyday and from having found her place to be.

I had the opportunity to catch up with Claire Lloyd to dig deeper behind her island life and the place that stole her heart, and to find out the story behind one of her photographs that not only vividly reminds me of the special beauty of Greece, but which has ignited a curiosity in me ever since I first came across it, years ago.
 

“I don’t carry my camera with me wherever I go.
I am an observer, it’s something I enjoy. I have to feel
the need to photograph and my head must be clear.
When I photograph, I am focused, nothing can stop me.
I work fast and I see many opportunities
to capture beautiful images.”


 

What is the story behind this photo?
This is an extract from my book, My Greek Island Home, about the picture: “We have begun to expect the unexpected on these excursions. Recently I came around a bend in the road to find an old chair hanging high in one of the acorn trees. I really could not understand why. It looked rather good, as if it had been placed there for a magazine shoot – not unlike something I would have set up in the past. The angle I approached it from was stunning: a dirt road led towards the tree and beyond it in the distance the countryside rolled down to the deep blue water, a brilliant azure sky overhead. It took me several days to find out why the chair was there. Gregory, a man who has recently come back to the village after living for most of his life in South Africa, told me that he kept the chair in the tree as it was a beautiful place to stop and enjoy the view. He has also made a wooden bird, which he has placed on top of the tree to show the direction of the wind. The bird is painted white; it has been crudely cut out and wide brushstrokes of red and blue stretch horizontally along its wings, resembling feathers. A handmade wooden propeller turns it with the wind, and it is attached to the tree by a length of what looks like wooden broom handle, painted blue. It is so charming and a little like outsider art.”

What inspired you to move to Lesvos?
I was inspired by my amazing homeopath and friend, Victoria Young. I went into her London clinic in May 2005 and told her I was feeling a need to reignite my creativity and to ground myself. Immediately she held up her mobile phone and on it was a photograph of a walnut tree next to a beautiful traditional stone house under piercing blue skies. The image stopped me in my tracks. She said to me ‘perhaps this could be your remedy’. She also said that when I saw the image my face completely changed. Within a week, I was on the island and, as soon as my feet hit the ground, I felt a deep connection to the beautiful Island of Lesvos.

In what ways has Greece changed your life and lifestyle? Would you do it all over again?
My life is now much quieter, I am more connected to nature. I have learnt to slow down and appreciate the simplest things life offers. Living in a village has made me appreciate the importance of community. It’s fantastic to be able to breath fresh, clean air, witness the changing seasons, listen to bird song day and night, and eat seasonal fruit and vegetables.

I would do it all over and over and over again.

You said Lesvos reconnected you with nature. You are an Australian who moved to London, and then to Lesvos, back to nature. Can an Australian – one could say that nature is in your DNA – ever adapt to a very urban existence? Where have you felt most at home? Do you think it’s important to feel that you belong to one particular place?
For me, I feel at home pretty much wherever I am. I love the difference between places because it’s exciting and stimulating. I am fortunate to have homes in 3 countries and I don’t rule out expanding on that. I love creating nurturing living spaces, I do this wherever I go. Nature is hugely important to me, maybe because of my Australian roots, I incorporate it in my life wherever I am. I think it’s up to the individual to decide where they feel they belong; it does not have to be one place, the most important thing is recognising the feeling of belonging somewhere and go with it. Even if it’s impossible to be in that special place all the time, it’s good for the soul to know it’s there and tap into it whenever you can.

What are the lows and challenges of living on an island? Could you tell me one unexpected thing (good or bad) about this kind of lifestyle that not many people know? Is there anything that completely takes your friends by surprise when they visit?
I think, for me, the biggest challenge is the winter weather, the winters can be harsh. Last winter it got down to -12 in our village, but that is unusual. During the winter, life becomes more insular. You don’t see many people around the village, they are hidden behind closed shutters. You know they are there because there is the smell of log burning fires wafting through the village. We had the mad idea that Greek Islands were always warm. Luckily, someone put us straight and we had central heating installed. We also have a couple of wood burning stoves. I am very lucky to head south for the winter to Sydney. So, for me, almost all year round is summer.

My friends are always surprised by the generosity of the Greek people, the authenticity and pure beauty of the island. Lesvos is the third largest Greek island, so the landscape differs vastly from one part to another. My mum and dad came from Australia to stay for a month recently, they have been five times now. At 6am on our way to the airport for their flight home my mum turned to me and said, “you live in paradise”. My response was “I certainly do”.

How has living on the island inspired you creatively?
It inspired me to photograph and write My Greek Island Home, which was huge. My strength is visual and I was never confident with my writing, but being able to describe what I was experiencing in everyday life on the island really helped me gain more confidence with my writing. It is such a pleasure and a privilege living in the village and being part of its community and capturing its authenticity.

Living here has given me space to contemplate and to decide how I move forward with my creativity. It has also started me painting again, although I’m going slowly with that.

Your photographs always seem to capture the small pleasures of life, the beauty of the everyday, moments you simply witness rather than prepare for, but you just happen to have the camera ready. Do you always have a camera at hand? Is it a challenge for a photographer to simply witness a moment without taking any picture?
I don’t carry my camera with me wherever I go. I am an observer, it’s something I enjoy. I have to feel the need to photograph and my head must be clear. When I photograph, I am focused, nothing can stop me. I work fast and I see many opportunities to capture beautiful images. I love making things beautiful, it’s a very natural thing, for me it’s instinctive. The simplest things for me are the very best.

What do you never get tired of photographing in Greece?
I am naturally drawn to detail, so I never tire of shooting beautiful details.

What is the most important lesson that Greece has taught you?
It has taught me to enjoy every day because it’s unique. It’s taught me it’s ok just to sit and be present like a cat. It has also taught me that nothing is ever straightforward.

You paint a very honest, heartfelt, real image of village life in Greece in your book, My Greek Island Home, very different from the Greek island holiday destination we have all become too familiar with. I myself look for the more secluded locations whenever I go to Greece, because I like to get a grip of the authentic life in the places I visit. What destination do you think best encompasses the beauty and authenticity of Greece?
Lesvos, the place that stole my heart.

You can keep up with Claire’s photography and work here:
Website: Claire Lloyd Loves
Instagram: @clairelloydloves / @mygreekislandhome

Posted by classiq in Beauty & Beautiful Living, Interviews, One day that summer, Photography | | Leave a comment

The Simplistic Ease of Summer Dressing: Scarlett Johansson in Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Scarlett Johansson style Vicky Cristina Barcelona 
Just as Penélope Cruz’s wardrobe in Vicky Cristina Barcelona is the perfect embodiment of her bohemian soul (as I wrote a couple of weeks ago), Scarlett Johansson’s costumes are a great representation of her free spirit. But while María Elena brings on screen a tumultuous, somptuously disheveled style, Cristina is more practical. Her clothing has a worldly flair, yet retains a down-to-earth, even classic vibe. She doesn’t like to live by rules either, she is still wandering and aimless and she is willing to let life kind of happen in front of her. But, eventually, she stills feels the need of belonging (somewhere and to someone).

She wears flowy and breezy sleeveless blouses, but also fitted t-shirts and tank tops. She likes jeans, but also wide-leg linen pants. She carries a canvas messenger bag, because it is practical – she is a tourist, but she also pursues her passion for photography. Neutral, casual and carefree, Cristina’s clothing is a realistic portrayal of today’s comfortable, streamlined style, but also of travel style – the simplistic ease, no-fuss of summer dressing – in summer, the more natural, relaxed, easy-going, ‘seize the day’ version of oneself comes to life. I like how relatable and basic her entire wardrobe is, but I may have a soft spot for her all-American look pictured above – in fact, it is a look of such universal appeal that one might argue that America can no longer claim it, but rather the very person wearing some kind of version of it, thus giving it singularity, its present and its future. That’s the beauty of it.

We, as viewers, often have the tendency to overlook a present-day wardrobe in a present-day movie. The times that are close to our memory are the most difficult to re-create on screen. But it’s exactly when you don’t necessarily notice the costumes that you can be sure that that’s the way it should be, because the clothes should seemlessly blend with the character. Because however common it may look, in a good movie, a wardrobe is not merely “street clothing”, but a narrative medium.
 
Scarlett Johansson's style Vicky Cristina Barcelona 
Scarlett Johansson's style Vicky Cristina Barcelona 
Scarlett Johansson's style Vicky Cristina Barcelona

photos: movie stills captured by me | Weinstein Company/The Mediapro /Gravier Productions | cinematographer: Javier Aguirresarobe

Posted by classiq in Style in film | | Leave a comment

One Day That Summer: Linh, Northern Vietnam

IMG_0152 
To celebrate summer, in the course of the following months I will be collaborating with various photographers and photography collectors to bring you exclusive stories from behind the lens. Whether travel photography or pictures from the movie sets, One Day That Summer is an invitation to discovery, to open your mind and eyes, to live life like you stole it.
 
 
José Pablo Cordero Iza‘s body of work spans travel, diverse societies, ancient traditions and contemporary culture alike, yet always retains the human element. There is a vibrancy to his photography that can only stem from his ability to communicate the reality and uniqueness of the places and people he represents in his work. His portraits capture those tiny moments that tell a thousand stories. I talked to José about one particular story, the one behind his portrait of the girl of the rice paddies of Lào – Cai (which, every time I look at it, reinforces my opinion that black and white images have a power that colour can not match), about the role of photojournalism, and about his book, “Visual Passport”, which is the result of 12 years of traveling around the world (and which is unfortunately only available in Chile for now).
 
 

“There are personal moments that are magical,
and I keep them for me. I feel that being without
the camera in some moments, allows me to catch
those seconds in my mind.
It is my intimate moment with the observed.”


 
 
What’s the story behind this photo?
I had the habit of going for a walk very early in the morning, taking pictures across the rice paddies in the mountains of Lào – Cai, in the north of Vietnam at the border with China. During those days of long walks, a little girl always accompanied me. Perhaps she was curious about what I was doing, or just for fun. The girl had a beautiful smile and timid eyes, but they were very penetrating. She understood only a few words in English. Timidly, she told me her name: “My name is Linh”. We did not speak a common language, and all our communication was based on sign language, looks and gestures. The following days, she became my company. It was not until my last day in the mountains that I decided to take her picture and thus will be able to remember her always.

Years later, while revising my files in editing my book, “Visual Passport”, I was reunited with that photo and the memories immediately emerged. Noticing that image I felt an impulse to search the meaning of her name. To my astonishment, I found it meant “Free Spirit” in Vietnamese. There could not be a better name for the little girl who freely followed me across the beautiful countryside of Northern Vietnam.

Could you tell me a little more about your book, “Visual Passport”?
Visual Passport is my last photobook, the third of my own. Visual Passport is a journey through everyday images, which are the result of 12 years of travel around the world. This book also contains collages of my own. It is a very personal record, because on this project I used different formats of cameras, such as lomography and polaroid cameras. As its name says, it is a Passport through images.
 
Visual Passport Jose Cordero Iza

Visual Passport Jose Cordero Iza

“Visual Passport”, by José Pablo Cordero Iza


 
Do you always carry a camera with you?
Actually, I’m not carrying my camera with me all the time, because, for me, when I go out to photograph, I put all my energy and concentration into it. It is a state of mind, where I focus and put all my passion into the act of photographing.

Take or make a photograph? Do you wait for a good photo? Are there times when you simply witness the moment without taking/making any picture?
It depends on the circumstances, there are situations when many photographs are in front of you, and just press the button. There are other images, when you expect the moment and a particular light. Inside you know that you will find the scene and the precise moment. With respect to your question, there have been many photographs that I have kept in my mind. There are personal moments that are magical, and I keep them for me. I feel that being without the camera in some moments, allows me to catch those seconds in my mind. It is my intimate moment with the observed.

A travel writer once told me that the most fulfilling thing about her work is being able to change the false impression that somebody has on a country and people. What is the most rewarding thing about your being a journalist and a travel and documentary photographer?
In my years as a traveler, photographer and journalist, I have been fortunate to live many intense experiences. But I think I can not single out just one rewarding experience. I think it’s a set of learnings that help you grow as a person and in your work. Being able to travel the world and share experiences with such diverse cultures in Africa, Asia, America (South and Central) and Europe makes your work on the field rewarding.

Over time there have been concerns about image manipulations by some famous photojournalists, and complaints that their photos are exploitative and represent a false, exotic vision of non-Western cultures to feed the fantasies of the Western audience, while failing to reflect reality. What is a photojournalist’s role? Shouldn’t it express a visual interest in these cultures’ history and ethnography, rather than their “value” to the Western world?
It seems unacceptable to me the manipulation of elements in the photographic composition. I think it is an unfair act and it causes damage of the photographic work of all my colleagues who are really honest. Stereotypes about certain cultures are a real vice. Always try the same concepts and focus only on misery, pain etc, leaving aside another aspects like hope, and happiness of the people of those places. But I also believe this situation is not only the fault of the photographers, it is also the responsibility of some publications and editors who are interested in selling certain patterns and messages to the readers.
 
Visual Passport Jose Cordero Iza

Visual Passport Jose Cordero Iza

Visual Passport Jose Cordero Iza

“Visual Passport”, by José Pablo Cordero Iza


 
You are Chilean. If you could capture the essence of your country in one sentence, how would you describe it?
Wow, it is a difficult question, but I think a sentence that could describe my country, or rather a concept, is: “A Land of extreme nature”.

What is the most fundamental ingredient in your pictures? What does it take for a photo journalist to go there? What do you want to communicate through your photographic stories?
More than a specific ingredient, I try to look for spontaneity, and I think this one is the real interaction with what you are going to photograph. In my photography, I try to show the viewer the situations and experiences that I have lived, transport and involve the reader with the stories, places and especially the people that are appearing in my assigments and journeys.

They say that people make the place. Do you agree?
I think that a fundamental unit in photography is the anthropological and sociological content. There are stories in which the human factor is the essence of the stories. In photojournalism, like in travel photography, individuals provide answers in order to understand societies in their complexity. Interacting with the human being is a key factor for the results of what you want to communicate.
 
Visual Passport Jose Cordero Iza

Visual Passport Jose Cordero Iza

“Visual Passport”, by José Pablo Cordero Iza


 
What is the most important lesson that your travels have taught you?
Difficult times are lived in the world. There is a lot of mistrust and hate. Travel has allowed me to cultivate tolerance and respect for the different ways of thinking and living that exist, in addition to respect for the nature that surrounds us. I firmly believe that societies must seek bridges of union and not WALLS of separation. Travel has made it easier for me to establish my personal bridges of understanding with others.

What is your favourite moment of the day for shooting? Do you swear by the “golden hour”?
That depends on what you are searching for in your photographs. There are moments when the light of the first hours of the day gives much force to the image, or in the evening. But there are times when situations appear at any time. I think the photographer can not be conditioned by the hours of the day. It’s always a good time for a great photo.

If you could be anywhere in the world right now (old or new location), preparing to shoot, where would you want to be?
I would like to return to many places. But now I have two destinations that await me in a short time. They are different projects, the first one in France, and the other one in the Peruvian Amazon.
 
Visual Passport Jose Cordero Iza

“Visual Passport”, by José Pablo Cordero Iza

You can keep up with José’s photography and work on Instagram: @cordero_iza

photos of the book: courtesy of the photographer

Posted by classiq in Interviews, One day that summer, Photography | | Leave a comment