Frequently Asked Questions

I was born in 1982 and I lived there till I was 19. After that I moved to Barcelona to study at the university. So I spent the most important part of my life surrounded by the sea. I mean, the most, because it is when you are growing up that you are most influenced by your surroundings. Of course you are always growing and learning, but now, slower than when you are a child. My father especially loved the sea and he is also a diver.My parents owned a small boat as well and I spent a lot of time getting into the sea as a child, in one form or another.

I studied Electronic Art and Digital Design. That’s the name that the university gives to my subject. That meant studying many different subjects and diversity of classes to attend, focusing in new media and new languages of communication. But probably the subject that most touched me was Photography. An old language….but still so powerful. I spent a couple of hours every week during the four years….from shooting in 35mm film cameras and developing in the dark room, to working with digital images on computers.

The camera is a normal camera, the same model that you can use on surface. In my case it is a Canon 5D MarkII, that almost always I join with a 16-35 lens.What makes it special is the aluminium housing that covers the camera protecting it from the water and the pressure. I’m using a SeaCam. Sometime I also swim with a flash to get some color when I’m too deep in the sea and all is blue.

I don’t like the word inspiration. Is something that come from divinity and from the supernatural. My inspiration is spend much time as possible underwater. I always keep in mind this Picasso sentence: “Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.”

Just me and the model. As much simple is the set up much easy is move to the sea. You don’t need wait for an special day to take pictures, if all it’s easy you can go to swim and dive with the camera at any time of the day. Even on working days, always you can take a 2 hours break. This is the reason because most of my photography is made in apnea. Just a mask, a snorkel and the camera. I have a flash, and some time I use it, but is not my favorite option. I like the natural light and I don’t like how heavy is the flash. Specially if you have to walk more than half an hour to arrive to the sea. Keep it simple.

A lot. First of all for you. Down there is cold, is dark, is wet, always is moving and you can’t breath and even see is not easy. Then the weather, have some kind of control or forecast is complicated, because affects the atmosphere conditions plus the sea conditions. All the parameters from the atmosphere combined with all the parameters of the sea. And then the camera. Is darker than in surface, so you need a good aperture on your lens or an artificial light. As more deep you are the colors are disappearing, remaining just the blue. The difference of density between air and water makes a different focus because the water acts as a lens, and some other issues. Pretend to control all of this, is almost impossible. The better option is jump to the sea with an open mind and adapt yourself to the conditions.

“The sea is everything. It covers seven-tenths of the terrestrial globe. It’s breath is healthy and pure. It is a spacious wilderness where man is never alone, for he can feel life throbbing all around him. The sea is the environment for a prodigious, supernatural existence; it is nothing but movement and love; it is a living infinity. The sea is nature’s vast reserve. It was through the sea that the globe as it were began, and who knows if it will not end in the sea! Perfect peace abides there. The sea does not belong to despots. On its surface immoral rights can still be claimed, men can fight each other, devour each other, and carry out all the earth’s atrocities. But thirty feet below the surface their power ceases, their influence fades, their authority disappears. Independence is possible only here! Here I recognize no master! Here I am free!” Jules Verne, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.

I’ve the sensation that is much more simple than people think. Because I like keep it simple. I don’t like spend too much time taking care of the the technique and setting up an scene. I like capture some kind of improvisation in an action where anyone shows the own body gesture. The perfection of the photo for me is not important at all.

Some of my best shoots are made in 5 minutes. But before this moment I’ve spend a lots of hours swimming and freediving in many differents places, different times of the day, different sea and atmosphere conditions, etc.

I don’t spend too much time preparing the photo, because the photo is not prepared. But I spend long days, walking the way, trying to provoke that special moment that looks like all is prepared. But doesn’t.

In a normal day, if there is some normal day, the plan is just go to the sea; on a beach, by boat or just a place where you can jump from the rocks. And the idea, is go to spend a nice time enjoying to the sea. I don’t like go thinking to take awesome photos, that’s bullshit, this sounds too arrogant and add some unnecessary pressure to the model and me. The first thing is enjoy but carrying the camera, just in case… Once there, I decide what to do, spend long time with the model trying hundreds of things, just freediving while I take some pictures, go by myself shooting to waves or the landscape, or just shooting other people around. Also some times I leave my camera on the sand and I just enjoy the moment.

I love dive, freedive and swim, always in the sea, I hate the pools, are so boring. Also sail with my father’s old boat, sail with a small sailboat the windy days. And at this days, in my 33’s I’m learning to surf, I’m too old to be good on it, but don’t to have some fun. As you see, I like the sea, a lot.

I also love the cinema, some outing and take beers with my friends. I miss this things a lot when I’m far from home.

I also enjoy a lot planning my next trip. Planning is part of the journey.

Is a shame. As a result of my experience around the world I stopped to eat fish four years ago. I do some exceptions when the fish is catched by myself or some friend in an etic way. I mean just a few catches enough for a meal to eat a couple of times a year. Because the 99% of the fish industry is not sustainable. If you buy meat, you are killing an animal, but if you buy fish, you are also killing the sea. I don’t want to be part of a business like this.

The other big problem is the plastic.

Seeing the evolution of just the last 50 years in this two issues I’m sad to say that looks like there is not a solution. We have to assume that we’ll swim in a sea full of plastic and empty of fish. And I’m not talking about the future, this is the reality of today and is gonna be worst and worst.

Let’s take less time praying and more time taking care of the nature.

I love to share my feelings under the sea. The feeling of immensity. The feeling of tranquility. The feeling of freedom. I don’t care about capture the place. I love capture the moment. And I hope that all the underwater photographers, sharing our work, help to be more aware about how important the sea is, and the care that we have to be with it.

No much. If I jump to the water with people that I already know and who I’m confident with, I have to worry about nothing. But who is a new people I try to be sure that they are comfortable in the water. Because people that is not good in the water, they get tired very easily, I mean 10 minutes. But with people that has a regular relation with the sea, we can stay several hours.

I have to say the place where I was born: Menorca, an small island in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. This sea is almost empty of life but has one of the clearest water of the world. And when you are in, you can see how big is it and how small you are. This feeling is why I love dive.

Most of the pictures are without scuba gear. If the model goes freediving me too. If is a wave situations, also freediving. But if is a normal dive, deep dive, wreck dive, etc, of course, I wear a scuba gear. But I’m so happy just taking photos with no fins, just mask, snorkel, shorts and my camera without flash. I do photos technically worst, but it’s easy to capture moments and actions into the improvisation.

I play a lot with the ISO, because I shoot a lot without flash. Underwaves we normally have a dark situation and a lot of movement, so we need a more sensitive film, but no too much, around ISO 1000. The same at 60 meters deep, its so darker but we barely have movement, so with no flash we need to force it at ISO 4000 at least.

Three things are essential to do this easily. A wide angle lents, a big lens diameter and a big front port on the housing. Then there is an other things; as choose a day with no wind and waves. As more flat is the sea more easy is keep it on the middle of the picture. If you can touch the bottom with your feet, more stability and comfort to shoot when you have half / half on the viewer. And keeping the front port without drops is the most tedious thing. You can buy an special liquid that helps you a lot. Or just do as I do, put the camera underwater and when you take it out, you have two seconds when the front port is plenty of water with no drops, at this point you must shoot. After this first two seconds the drops appear. Probably you should repeat this at least five times to take just one acceptable photo.