I can hardly begin to explain what it feels to see La Bala looking so shiny and beautiful. When I look at it, it is not a classic vehicle what I see, but the prospect of a life I once barely dared to dream now close to becoming real life.
Hoy hace justo un año desde que me rapé el pelo. En este tiempo ocurrieron todas las cosas que temí que ocurrieran, y algunas más. Y resulta que no pasa nada, que pese a todo, aquí estoy, más feliz, más fuerte y más yo que nunca.
Los lugares de fe despiertan en mí extrañezas y contradicciones. Más aún cuando estos se levantan en territorios donde no hace mucho se disputaban contiendas exacerbadas por nacionalismos religiosos.
Catedral de Zagreb, Septiembre de 2015.
Quienes juzgan mi decisión de escapar de un trabajo aparentemente cómodo y bien remunerado, esos que me miran con cara de “¡qué has hecho, estás loca!”, no saben que en realidad no tenía alternativa; que entre lo justo o el engaño, elegí lo justo; que entre el valor o el miedo, elegí el valor a pesar de la intensidad miedo; que entre apariencia o verdad, elegí verdad; que entre vivir o morir, elegí vivir.
Y si aún no lo entiendes, pregúntame si soy feliz. Y tú, ¿eres feliz?
Entre la vida como ha de ser, esa que nos venden sin cesar, y la vida imaginada, se abre un abismo a la medida de los miedos de cada uno. Salvar ese abismo lleva días a unos, meses a otros y años a quienes, como yo, no solo parten de una altura considerable sino que además, lo hacen sufriendo de un vértigo crónico.
Algunos días quisiera haber nacido en Siberia, otros en Nueva Zelanda, el otro día pensé que mejor en Suiza, hará cosa de un mes le daba vueltas a Islandia, y hace dos a Marruecos; un años atrás solo pensaba en Kenia y hoy no dejo de sentir Mongolia.
Sometimes you can do no more but wonder what all those animals are doing on the streets.
Lately, I ask myself more and more often, what would happen to my soul if I could spend three months of my life just wandering in search of photos.
Lately, I cannot help it but to think that, in this hyper connected world, we are loosing the target, the goal, the reasons for what we do.
Think about this… Who do we, photographers, take the pictures for? Is it just for us, for our Facebook friends, for our egos, for money or perhaps, in the sake of art?
I feel it is very important to answer this question honestly because, somehow, the reasons behind the photos we take, tend to show in them.
I have no doubt that I take the pictures for myself, as a way of discovering the world around me and, in the process, getting to know myself better. But recently, while in that process, I discovered something else: I also take pictures for the people who, one way or another, are the main characters of the story; the people for whom the topic I am working on is an integral part of their life.
This answer started to build up a short back when, in the middle of my efforts to promote my most recent work “Basketball is Life”, a friend of mine, with a much more marketing kind of mind than me, said: “It’s good that you want your work to be seen during the coming Basketball World Cup but, bear in mind that your main goal is not to show it to the basketball community but to the photography people out there so that, perhaps in the future, they might hire you for some more work.” It got me thinking. A lot. There is nothing wrong with that argument, right? If I want to work as a photographer, I need to be noticed by the people who hire photographers. Right, yes, let’s focus on that then.
It turned out to be impossible. As perfect as that argument might sound, the truth is that, after months of going through these thoughts over and over again, I have not been able to silence my obsessive desire to show this work to the basketball people, to all those who have ever felt about the sport anywhere close to the way I felt about it in my youth.
So there you go, I take pictures for me and for them, for all of us who share a deep emotion. And I guess that’s the reason why it makes me so extremely happy to see them posing, proud, with my work in their hands. They are the ones who can really appreciate what BASKETBALL IS LIFE is all about.
There are things in life that one sees so far away that hardly ever believes they could happen. For me, only four years ago, the MA in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography by the London College of Communication felt like that: an almost impossible.
In time, it turned out not only not to be impossible but, in fact, quite easy. Don’t misunderstand that easy though… it was really hard work, at times exhausting, but so exciting and challenging that life went easy, fast, interesting… it flowed, I flowed!
Now, seven months after I graduated, and missing the harsh deadlines that work to challenge me, I am feeling a bit lost and desperate about not quite finding the right road, but also, surprisingly, recognising the feeling of new almost impossible dreams slowly building up in my head.
I guess it’s time to start working hard towards those impossibles until, one day, they become a… here it is, nicely done!
While on my way there, I’ve realised that, for some reason, I have not been allowing myself to take pictures of my daily life
(Why? Because that’s not part of a larger, interesting, photography project), nor letting myself write about whatever calls my attention, just as I used to (Why?, because that’s not part of a larger, interesting, photography project). But why if the self imposed conditions are only strangling my desire to create?
Well, how about not restricting myself from anything for a change? After all, whatever I feel, whatever I read, whatever I write, whatever I photograph… are the building blocks of who I am and, thinking about it, that ought to be the only and most important project in life: living as close as possible to who you are and, if possible, always confronting your own ’almost impossibles’.