Bodaf Europe Malaga 2013 Experience

I needed a few days to reset before writting this. To reach home, kiss our boy, talk to our cat. It’s good to be at home, but it’s pity that it’s already after BodafEurope.

Most of all I miss all people, maybe not talking much in English, but very exited about the congress, the speeches, possibilities, the future. Best wish I can say to you: stay with this eager.

A lots of talks, at the pool, in the bar, everywhere. Where we are, european, do we still need to be guide as blind in wedding business or we are adult enough? I hope you all got the message: it’s time to make a change.

I hope you all have noticed the difference in this Bodaf. So much about this change. The Holstee Manifesto that appeared many times during speeches, quoted partly or full. It’s the right time. It’s about the change and believe in what we are doing. None can drive car forward looking at rear-view mirror. I keep my thumbs for that.

It’s the same as koan from Zen: the old man sits it the center of the village and tells the stories. First all people are around him, then only few of them, then nothing, even children. But still sits in the center of the village and tells the stories. After some days one of the children has come to him and asked: Grandpa, there is none around you, why you still tell the stories? None listen to them. He just said: At first I was telling the stories to change the world, now I tell the stories to not let the world change me.

This is my message to you all. Donot let world change you. Change the world. Because you can.*

We are still under impression about Spanish photographers and videographers (and Fran Montoro which is definately filmaker and great storyteller). This was first time I’ve heard so honest words about business from american photographer (once again hats off Sean Flanigan). Ed Peers, 200% authentic and totally reflecting with personality to his pictures and style, calm and peaceful, Davina and Daniel with incredible passion and dedication. And restless Jonas Peterson, still thinking about what I’ve heard from him ‘in between’.

Special thanks and incredible warm hug to Andres Parro and Issa Leal. You have created something really amazing. It’s always about people and – chapeau bas to you for whole congress. We are with Agnieszka really amazed by you both and your ‘child’ so much of your personality inside Bodaf, it’s incredible to meet you and be part of this.

Thanks and hug for whole ‘in the bar’ pals: Hamish, Steve, Ed, Jonas. It was kinda lifetime experience to share time and some beers with you. Hope to meet you again one day.

Luis, Ana, Fran, Andreas, Marcin, Victor, Sergio, Patrizia, Héctor, Adrian, Nicole, Moniek, Rene, Sophie, Kake – it was great to see you folks. A big hug and kiss!

Francisco Montoro, you forced me to think more about music. There are no words that can say ‘thank you’ proper way.

* with special decidation to one man that shared with us something very special and personal: Jonas.

incoming Bodaf Europe 2013 Malaga

Finally I have written a draft of the presentation and workshop I will give on Bodaf Europe 2013 Malaga, so it’s time to share it.

alternative approach to the weddings

Inside photographer: why and what we shoot during wedding coverage and outside wedding theme. how to make a change.

Aesthetic of the mistake: how to develop our mistakes into your signature style. how to make them working for us.

I will share also my two years experience of weddings thru small boxes: rangefinders (Leica M) and mirrorless cameras, shooting on film.

So, it’s divided into two parts as the idea of Bodaf Europe: presentation/speech for all attenders and 5 hours workshop with limited seats.

The workshop will give you some tools and points to analyse and work later. And of course all this stuff is from the point of photojournalism, documentary and storytelling. See you there!


Bodaf Europe 2013, 26-28. February, Malaga / Spain.

Samo & Martin – wedding photojournalism workshops in autumn

[quote]Out whole experience is empty without the story.[/quote]

Let’s say for example – Spain, the place on the earth I really love. It’s connected to the people that opened my mind – I mean my first Spanish couple, Paz and Carlos. I met them a few years ago, they wanted pure documentary photojournalism – not typical wedding photography. They wanted photographer to be invisible. To focus on people. People and things as they are. I remember question about details. Do you want us to shoot details? No, just focus on the people. They wanted to see all the things by the people, but mostly all the people. All smiles, tears, emotions. So Spain brings me memory of Paz and Carlos’ wedding – the memory ot the biggest encounter with myself. To be on wedding and not disturb the real life, emotions. To capture it as it is. To tell the truth. Non polished glamour wedding images, but pure real life captured in transparent form. Come back to pure traditional photojournalism. To roots of the story. To connection to the things we see. Most of the photographers used to say: we are photojournalism. But honestly, most of the time it’s because the reason that they need an excuse to tell to the Client: this is photojournalism, you cannot expect anything, that’s real life. Well, a big mistake in thinking – photojournalism is about telling the story to the viewer.

And stories need to be told. They are not just series of pictures. This is main difference – story is the smell of the day. The connection to real life. The story is something real. It happened, we were there. We’ve seen it. We are witness of something that has priceless value. But the value is true only if we are able to tell the story.

I remember Paz crying during watching proof pictures after the wedding. Then I remember that we were asked to shoot birthday of Paz’s best friend – Gabina, in Madrid. It was the best prize in real life contest.

So workshop about telling the real stories. Building them. The skills to try. An encounter with ourselves. Our weakness. The change.

Since iceages people tell the stories. We, photojournalists, have pictures to replace the words. That’s the human experience with storytelling. In our aspect – pictures are words, but we need wisdom of choosing correct words to build the sentences, and whole story. So here comes the story building.

We want with Samo to share our experience, non conventional wedding photography as documentary photojournalism. A different approach to the weddings. We both have roots in press photojournalism. We both are hardcore wedding photojournalists by our thinking – composition, multilayered images, anticipation, storybuilding. This is nothing against doing pretty pictures. This is towards telling real stories by images. Bold, loud, full of life, fresh and delicious. We will show the path to shoot this lifestyle images. How to flow in any conditions, how to find subject on any wedding, how to build connection with the subject.

So the goal of this workshop is the encounter with a story. To tell the best story we can. We are like medieval bards. In some way, we are the part of the story. What are the rules, the random elements we need to predict and what is the main, heavy base.

What can you expect – extreme and fun exercises, assigment and review of the work, a very intense time with photography. Seeking for the subject of the story and thinking nonlinear. Pure documentary and photojournalistic work. Yes, very difficult questions to ask ourselves during the workshop and then, things to rethink, reanalyze. Multilayered images, digging into composition, playing with complex composition, understanding the lens, understanding models of exposure, thinking 3dimensional on flat surface of the picture, composing while picking the moment, story building. With some aspects we will come back to the roots, basics, but frequently misunderstood or forgotten by many digital photographers.

We have modified the concept from the previous workshop. More active and more with photography. More things you will stay with for the future hard work. More things that changed us and build our skills. Like previous time – we provide printed booklets for you, so you will stay with our suggestions and tips in printed and handy form.

Be ready for a change. It’s right time and right place to do it. See you there. 

after La Vinyassa workshop

It has taken me a long to summarize it. It’s always difficult when you miss something, especially people. That’s a problem with every workshop done. People we met, talked, liked.

La Vinyassa means rain. I’m not sure if it’s within translation or just within tradition. But fortunately rain means images and stories.

We thought with Samo to go back to the basics on the workshop: why and what we shoot. These are roots of our perception. Honesty with image and the story. It’s our story builder.

It was great to see that people were doing totally different images then on their wedding photography blogs. A risk, a temptation, an evaluation. This is main deal, an encounter.

Kind words to our workshop Partners: Leica Camera Poland and Floricolor. Thanks to Floricolor Albums we were able to print on time a booklet for workshopers. These booklet are something that was always in my mind, maybe a tradition to follow? Something written, something real, printed that will last with each person. Notes taken? Maybe a group picture glued in. La Vinyassa Experience. All people that I’ve met (again): Samo & Romana Rovan, Maria Cano @ Roberto Ramos, Carolina Sainz, Raquel Cavero, Núria Millàs, Inés Ormazabal, Patrizia Oriol, Aida Castañón, Isabel Oli & Sergio Recio@SilverMoon, Carlos Costa, Rafael Soriano Garcia, Adrian Faraldo Mendez, Victor Saboya Bengochea, Christian Roselló Ortega, Héctor Añaños, Gabriel Navas Alexandre, Frederic Wolf, Antonio de la Rosa, Michel Quijorna, Germán Rodrigo, Sergio Méndez Borges, Norberto Sala. A big hug my friends!

For future workshops with Samo and me take note with and also our Facebook page.

A few shots/memories below. All Leica M9 + 35mm.

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after Chichon

Time to summarize. It was fifths workshop about pure marketing and psychology for photographers in terms of contact with Clients, ninth if counted with previous “Black is White” workshop editions. Sounds like voodoo. But rather this kind of magic it was really deep digging into the subject of what we do and what Client think. Luis Masyebra did great job about analyzing the Client steps into decision and whole tools’ part of workshop. Very scientific in term of professional approach. Great sum up with my psychology part and NLP approach. It’s twice great if you imagine that we did most difficult part – cutting/selecting/translating whole stuff during night before workshop of course after cervezas. And Ray Mass. It should be another story to be told about this man. He said almost everything I always wanted to say about WHY we shoot. WHY we should. For me – a wow and pure photographic addition to our stuff. And a large format group portrait of all – a great surprise and again – back to roots. It also brings me impression that on some level no matter what are the differences. There is knowledge we share. It’s amazing on every workshop I was doing: there is always something to learn yourself. From Luis, from Ray, from others, even we learn from mistakes. That’s life.

Below some memories on pics. All by Leica M9. All on 35mm. It was great to see you all and share some thoughts, hope it will bring you something important in your business. Masyebra, chapeau bas for fitting all together. You know you rule. Apart that you are my Metathron 🙂

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marketing para fotografos

it looks like Spain this year is my 2nd home. workshop for photographers how to eat all marketing stuff. Luis Masyebra and me. Two beasts of Markting. feel invited.

esto se parece a España este año es mi 2a casa. workshop para fotógrafos como comer toda la materia de márketing. Luis Masyebra y yo. Dos bestias del Marketing. sentido invitado.