Do you remember Curro Jimenez movie? If as a child, I didn’t miss any episode, it wasn’t either because of story line or because of the hero, as you can think out, but because of horses he was ridden. That was when I first saw Andalusian horses. When admiring these delightful creatures on the silver screen, I couldn’t even dream, I will meet them in the future, and even more, I will have many opportunities to photograph them. The reality turned out to be more beautiful that the movie. The expression of Andalusian horses as well as their inner flame and grace with which they pose in front of the camera don’t have equal, and make all photo shoot festive. Photographing any other horses breed, don’t fill me with such deep emotions. That is why, each year I return to Spain , attracted not only by horses, but also by Spanish hospitality and the raw beauty of its landscapes.
This spring, once again, I decided to visit the Andalusia, a mekka of Andalusian horse lovers. As I learnt from a breeder who hosted me, 60% of Andalusian horse population became in Andalusian, wild, mountain land, as beautiful as the bred it created.
When comparing with other Spanish regions I had knew before, Andalusia enrapture with its wide spaces – it is not rare to found here 100 ha studs. That’s the joy to wake up in early morning get in the off road car (doesn’t matter that a little bit worn out and without brakes), and to go in search of horses, taking narrow vertiginous paths over precipice. I still don’t understand how horses can walk on such rough rocky ground, without breaking their legs. However it turns out that it is not a problem for them and when they get born with photos, they run down in a flash.
This year the weather was very capricious and didn’t meet my expectations (I regret I hadn’t know Spanish saying “en abril, aguas mil” before), but even so two weeks passed like a whip shot. It was the time of intensive work and great entertainment as well.
Flamenco photo session certainly was the greatest moment of this trip. Another time the reality surpassed my expectations. The rider wearing traditional Spanish “traje corto”, ridding beautiful PRE stallion Americano dancing with flamenco dancer on the top of the mountains accompanied by flamenco music, impressed not only me, but all our little team as well. What an unforgettable experience it was! I really felt the chosen one being able to assist to this spectacle especially organized to meet needs of this photo session. Mil gracias Nico!!!
Evening session in Andalusian patio had more private character. This time we got by without the team, off road car or suitcase full of dresses. Illuminated patio turned out to be a perfect background for amazing grey stallion Dante TK. Unrepeatable private atmosphere of this evening will remain in my memory for a long time.
Talking about this trip I can’t overlook so important event like Seville Faire, which each year attracts to Spain thousands of tourists. First I didn’t think to assist to it, due to really tight schedule , but at the instigation of Spanish friends I changed my mind. I must say, it is difficult not to agree with them – to be in Seville and not go to Feria, it is unthinkable. The most of inhabitants come here to eat, drink, dance and have good time. I was more attracted by “paseo de coches y caballos” – the parade of carriages and riders. When by miracle I caught a taxi in the city which was depopulating, and around the 16 o’clock I arrived to the real of the feria where the event takes place, I still was able to walk easily with my camera between casetas (individual decorated marquee tents). However the crowd got thicker very fast so that the parade almost stopped and ambulating between all these carriages and riders became dangerous. “Las gitanas” from 2 to 70 years old, wearing elegant dresses, riders in traditional “traje espanol”, decorated multicoloured carriages pulled by horses and mules, as well as unrepeatable atmosphere of good entertainment, all this causes that Seville Faire is the event one shouldn’t miss.
After this short break, I harked back to my favourite activity in Spain – liberty shoots in next two studs where what was expecting me, were meadows in flowers, cactus and, for it wasn’t too good, heavy rain… In spite of problems with weather, this trip was very fruitful in great shoots and beautiful memories. I would like to thank to all breeders who hosted me for their hospitality, cordiality, friendship, as well as for their help when realizing my wildest ideas. I would also like thank flamenco dancer for surviving the photo session on the heels in the middle of wheat field. I already miss you all. To see you soon!
I invite you to watch this short clip from my photography trip in Andalusia:
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