Sunday, 30 May 2010


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It’s a self assignemet for me: to photograph the Corte Ingles Race (Cursa del Corte Inglés) in Barcelona, with 58.000 runners, and publish it in my blog as soon as possible. The race started at 9, 30 h an I posted it before noon.. Not bad, itsn’t it?

I used a Nikon D90 with a 18-55 mm zoom and a 180 mm f. 2.8. And of course, I shot in jpg format.

Ah! Very important. I bring from home a ladder and I carried on the subway back and forth.


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Saturday, 29 May 2010



400 g cooked chickpeas
75 grams of chicken broth
A little cumin
A splash of extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
Garlic ¼
20 g tahini (sesame paste)
A teaspoon of cayenne pepper (or sweet, to taste)
Pita bread.

The tahini and pita bread can be found in a specialised shop.

Triturate with the hand blender the cooked chickpeas (without the liquid if they are canned), broth, garlic, sesame paste and lemon. Spread on a plate, season, pour over the oil, cumin, and sprinkle with paprika. Accompany with pita bread as a spoon. It is not usual but I prefer it lightly toasted. To decorate the dish i added some carrot sticks.

Also, as usual, I'll talk about my guest, Mar Costa,

As always in this blog I invite someone to dinner related with photography and prepare a recipe, in this case Hummus, the traditional Middle Eastern paste made from chickpeas that I loved the first time I tried it, many years ago, in Jerusalem. It's a little risky on my part because certainly I can not compete with the delicious Hummus my friends Hammad and Nicole make at Kabara restaurant, but there I go.

Mar was an IDEP student of mine a few years ago. The first day of class students always present a sample of their work. I was struck by Mar subject; it was on an NGO in Nicaragua, a good story that contrasted strongly with many other works. But I also realized that Mar needed to find a photographic language of her own and still lacked a lot of technique. On completing the course she presented a final work on a common theme but I did not care, she had improved greatly and now she had a visual language with which to tell her coming stories.

I kept in touch with Mar, sporadically, and it caught my attention the fact that she had won a major prize in a travel photography contest, nothing more and nothing less than a world tour for two people. Thus was born the blog, De Costa a Costa (in Catalan), in which Mar narrated and photographed her experiences with his sister Clara. A blog that I thought was very cool, fun and creative.

Later on Mar, whose attitude considering that thanks to the internet and new technologies the world is her scope, won an important grant from the Ministry of Education of Spain. This overview of Mar Costa reminds me of other photographers such as Charlie Mahoney or Lauren Hermele who also were students of mine. The scholarship was to study two years at the University of Graz, Austria, Interactive Multimedia Design, a course which teaches photography, video, 3D, interactive, web design and audio. We agreed to see each other in Barcelona during the summer holidays and as I knew Mar liked Hummus, which she tasted in Palestine during her world tour, this was what I prepared for dinner.

Mar’s next project? A collective exhibition in Ljublijana organided by her Graz university. She also has ended a very interesting video based on photos taken in Istanbul, using what she learnt in Graz. You have to be very steep, at least I am, considering these new ways of multimedia, because maybe the future of photography and image passes through here.

Thursday, 27 May 2010


It's not a photo taken recently, but I saved it for the series from my window. It hapenned through this time of year. A strong storm left Barcelona's Gran Via like a green carpet.

Sunday, 23 May 2010


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The first blog that comes to my mind, of course, is The Sartorialist. The photographer Scott Schuman’s blog. Scott was a fashion photographer who liked more the fashion he saw on the street than on the big and trendy fashion festivals . And he began to take pictures, in a simple way: a Canon EOS 5 with a 50 mm , avalaible light, and asking permission to portrait the people he liked in New York, London, Paris, Milan ... He began his blog in late 2005 and now receives about 50,000 visits per day. Time magazine placed him among the top 100 Design Influencers. Schuman keeps the classic white Blogspot template . Now he just publishes the photos larger and retains the same header Tino Soriano and I had until recently.
What is the visual difference between The Sartorialist and the hundreds of thousands of blogs made with Blogspot? None.
Does that it mean that Scott Schuman's blog hasn’t got a personality of his own as Fran Simó would say? Come on!

Here I publish a block of 4 blogs made with classic Blogspot templates, white and black.

Strobist. A reference for all who want to use strobes properly.A technical must for photographers. A 23,784 Alexa ranking.

Photo Business News & Forum. Another classic. Essential for those who want to control the commercial side of photography.

Periodistas 21
by Juan Varela. One of the gurus of Spanish digital journalism. He has more than 2,000 fans.

I’ll speak about the blog of Elizabeth Avedon later on.

All these blogs work wonderfully. I do not think Blogspot "shred its brand" for nothing. Why? For the content they contain.

"People who want to continue with Blogspot and tune it to his liking? It offers lots of possibilities. Look at Shopahocalic, the fashion blog by Patricia Rod, which defines herself as "a fashion-crazed university student who refuses to grow." This blog won a major prize for best design.Very nice, don’t you think?

At a more modest level, but very effective, the blog of David Monfil. Not bad, eh?

So who wants to continue with Blogspot can "tune it" to taste . For the record, I have nothing against Wordpress: is a fantastic tool. But what I want to stress in these two post is that what it is really important is THE CONTENT.

And finally, a pleasant surprise. I discovered that among my followers (at the end of the right column of the blog) is Liz. Photo, which leads to the blog of Elizabeth Avedon.I investigate and discovered that she is the daugther-in-law of Richard Avedon and one of the most reputable designers in America. Yes, before yourselves do it , I made the question myself : What makes a girl like Elizabeth Avedon on a blog like this?

You can look at the wonderful Elizabeth’s work on her website Photography Book and Exhibition. But for her blog she is using the classical Blogspot template , header included. Is her identity at risk? I'm afraid not.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010


As I wrote when I tested other cameras, I am not a technical analyst but a professional photographer with some experience. For fans of in-depth laboratory analysis I would suggest you to consult the websites of DoX Mark and Hugo Rodríguez (in my links) that I consult frequently. I would be more in line with Ken Rockwell (another web I consults fairly often), a professional photographer who test cameras and lenses in the field with a lot of common sense and who does not care to ensure that a $ 500 camera gives better results that one of $ 3000, if that is the case.

For the test at high ISOS with the D5000 I used a still life with tomatoes (essential in the house of a Catalan to prepare pa amb tomàquet). Previously, for the D90 and D80 tests I used a still life with tangerines and tomato. The optics used in the D90 and D80 was a 28mm f: 2.8 Nikkor.
The still life I photographed with the D5000 was different but serves for comparison, because the detail is the same one for the three cameras: the tomato leaves, and in this case I used the 18-55 zoom at 28 mm position.

NIKON D80 ISO 1600

NIKON D90 ISO 1600

NIKON D5000 ISO 1600

Before the results, I had studied the comparisons made at high ISOS in DoX Mark: The Nikon D90 has a score of 977 on a theoretical maximum of 2526. The Nikon D5000 slightly less, has 867, but far beyond the Nikon D80 with a score of 524. In the photos of still life of tomatoes this difference becomes clear. There are no appreciable differences between photos taken with 1.6oo ASA D90 and D5000, and both outweigh the D80 clearly.There’s also a comparison at 3200 ASA. At such a high ISOS the Nikon D 700 is simply unbeatable

NIKON D80 ISO 1600

NIKON D 90 ISO 1600

NIKON D 5000 ISO 1600

NIKON D 5000 ISO 3200

NIKON D 700 ISO 3200

For the rest, the Nikon D5000 is an excellent camera for amateur photographers: light, with a removable screen, incorporated flash, you can shoot video ( see example), with a silent shutter, and a 12,3 megapixels sensor from the latest generation, which is the same as in the D90, all this at a very fair price. You can see the photos I made with it, at ISO 3200, at the party on the beach or at 1.600 ISO in Fotocolectania.

Disadvantages? The Nikon D5000 lacks the extra control buttons you can find in the D90 and the D80. To have access to basic functions such changing the ISO, the different options of measure the light, the type of shooting, etc., available on all the rest of professionals models you have to do it through the menu. Also, the autofocus does not work in older Nikon objectives that do not have a motor built. For the advanced amateur or professional photographer, for a few hundred Euros more, and without thinking, the D90 is much better. For someone who starts or who does not care about the inconveniences I wrote above they’ll find a great camera. In the ranking of DoX Mark, the D5000 is ranked number 14, just behind the D90, and outclassing 28 different models of Canon and Nikon digital SLR.

Friday, 14 May 2010


I was talking to Hélène by phone when suddenly I said:"Hélène, I see a rainbow from my window. I have to leave you. I must take the picture" and hung up. I was a little rough, but I don't see rainbows every day.

Sorry Hélène. I dedicate you the photo.

By the way, talking about Photoshop changes, you can see here the rainbow's raw.

Monday, 10 May 2010


It's Saturday and it’s a lovely day. People have left their coats at home and goes out. I decide to resume the series from my window. But this time I fixed a goal after taking a few pictures: the subject unit will be the wheel, without doubt one of the most important inventions in the history of mankind. I spend more or less half an hour to take pictures. This is the result.

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Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic


They’re beautiful, independent and make you company, but without harassing you. Thus began a post on my cats .They’re almost like family, so when something happens to them it affects you too.

The year did not end well for Taca, the flying cat. I recently detected a kind of ugly sore on her belly. A veterinary examination confirmed that it was a cancerous tumor in the breast that had to be operated without fail.

I had previously looked for advice at the Altarriba Foundation to recommend me a good, honest veterinarian clinic. The choice fell on G & G ,Gos i Gat, (Dog and Cat). I was delighted with the staff there and on Monday 28 they did the surgery on my cat.

Everything went very well. Taca was attended by a medical team of four women. Had it been a male cat could have used the paragraph of Don Quixote "Never was a knight of ladies so well attended, as was Don Quixote when from his village came."

Taca is now recovering at home, but I fear she has lost her fourth life.


The fan was invented for a Chinese in the VII century inspired in the bat wings. Humidity and high temperatures, during the Olympics Games in Beijing, makes the fan always present in the hands of people watching the Games. The picture was taken last year in Zhejiang province, China, for a story published in EL PERIODICO DOMINICAL.


The first rain arrived to Barcelona after many weeks. I needed a photo exactly here, in the road that goes from Barcelona to El Tibidabo, raining and at night. The storm, with plenty of lighting, started at about 10 pm. I left the home’s comfort and drove through the mountain’s bends with my camera, tripod and a big umbrella. This picture is part of a personal project I’ll explain later on. The apparent noise, or grain, in the image is due to the poring rain photographed during 1 second at 400 ASA.


A nice surprise for a blog still newborn, I started it in middle August. Big climb due to Capa (Stock photo, Capa and the copyright) Thank you Bob!


NIKON F ,24 mm F:2,8, TRI-X 400 ASA

I took this picture in September 11th of 1976 in Sant Boi, an eternity ago. It was the first massive political act in Catalonia after Franco’s death. It’s a simple photo that pictures pretty well this important moment. Perhaps because of this has been used plenty of times, as a books cover, like a gift in numbered and signed gelatine prints, in collective exhibitions and also in my exhibition “In the Threshold of Change”. Just a handful of photographers documented the first Catalonia's National Day. Maybe now it would be different. I imagine the thousands and thousands of people in the event taking pictures, all of them, with his mobile phones and digital cameras.