Category Archives: Photography

THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF RUSSIAN CRIMINAL TATTOOS

eastern promises

One of the last films directed by David Cronenberg, Eastern Promises, was an approach to the subworld of the Russian Mafia families that we barely know anything about for obvious reasons. Leaving the story and the plot aside, there was something which caught my interest right away: the importance of tattoos.

For many years tattoos have been related to sailors, prisoners, criminals…disreputable people in general. This is a supporting confirmation of such belief.

We all are aware of the Japanese Yakuza families, and the hierarchic distinction marked by tattoos. In the case of Russian mafia this tattoo language is fascinating.

Every symbol has a meaning, and the location of certain pieces determine the rank within the family.

RussianCriminalTattoosGuide

Thus, for instance cats mean pickpockets, the number of domes in churches have to do with prison sentence years, and bats are related to criminal acts at night.

Danzig Baldayev had to work in Kresty,  an infamous Leningrad prison, for 33 years. Getting acquainted with the convicts and observing a pattern in tattoos, from 1948 he made over 3000 drawings of their tattoos,  recording codes and writing down all sort of information.

His relationship with the inmates had to be very close and special he managed to obtain such secret information. Seems kind of unreal such dangerous people allowed Danzig to access to their world so easily.

Baldayev record

For some time he was ordered by his superiors to quit his activity until KGB realized how valuable his illustrations were as a resource to understand the codes of the criminals.

On the other hand, Sergei Vasiliev, a photographer who used to work for the newspaper Vecherny Chelyabinsk, spent 4 years (1989-1993) taking pictures of tattooed Soviet prisoners in prisons and reformatories settled in Chelyabinsk, St. Petersburg, Nizhny Tagil and Perm.

As you can observe, the results were amazing.

russian hands

man and chair

On one hand this was the confirmation of the language code inherent in the tattoos remained intact throughout the years, and on the other, all the information compiled by Baldayev was proved in individuals.

Saatchi Gallery in London exhibits selected works by the photographer.

russian prison guy

The Russian Criminal Tattoo Encyclopaedia divided into 3 volumes include many of Baldayev’s illustrations combined with Vasiliev’s photographies, being this collection a unique document including tattoos and codes, proving the existence of this occult disguised and hidden language even more remarkable in the Soviet era, when the individual was repressed and mute.

russian criminal tattoos

If you are into tattoos, these three volumes are a must, and if you are not, I think they are worth having a look anyway, so as to learn a different language and culture. At the end of the day the evil and dark side is always the most appealing.

A ROCK ALIEN IN FASHIONLAND

I arrived to Madrid yesterday  afternoon…again. Yeah, I know, I should move here and start saving the money I’m investing in flights for another worthy enterprise. Believe me, I’m trying, in fact, this trip has to do with my plans for moving to the big city. Let’s see how it goes.

My sis wanted to invite someone to visit Madrid Fashion Week #MBMFW, as she had a spare invitation. As weird as it might sounds and having in mind I’m not into fashion trends, I have to admit there are several aspect I’m interested in, thus the possibility of nosing what’s hot in one of these fashion summits for free, was quite attractive.

It’s funny this point Agnès and I have reached of understanding and experimenting activities we wouldn’t carry out for ourselves. She wouldn’t go to rock shows, and I wouldn’t go shopping, but we love approaching the other’s side, and at the end of the day, we enjoy any kind of events together. She didn’t have to insist nor ask me. It took me 30 seconds to tell her I was IN.

The plan was set, she was to pick me up at the airport, we’d eat something quick and go to the fair to see if we could catch any runway show. We accomplish the target.

The week consists, not only of the fashion shows featuring collections by established and young designers, but also promo and marketing. Thus you can find lots of stands of the different brands of makeup, magazines, and other sponsors, and of course, in order to catch your attention there are scheduled activities for amusement.

When we arrived L’Oréal stand was helding a course of make-up, promoting a line of cosmetics.

There were photo calls in search for new talents where you could pose for a pic and then participate in contests and…who knows? Perhaps become a model.

Magazines stands were giving issues for free. We got this month’s Bazaar and girls were crazy looking after it, because the only one available was summer’s edition. I was flipping.

There was a double runway show scheduled while we were there, and we tried to sneak in, queuing waiting for the organization staff to confirm there were seats available who those not having the invitation or admission ticket. They stopped allowing people entering right behind us, so at least it was worth the wait.

I felt like attending one of these shows, whose cuts you’ve seen many times on TV and live the experience, but also wanted to observe the people who attend these events, professionals aside.

I was surprised to notice a remarkable presence of ladies in their 50-60’s, not pretending to prove anything, just having fun at the runways and nosing at anything, basically same as me.

I already knew fashion world was superficial and cold, but yesterday my suspicions were confirmed. With this I’m not saying all people involved are like that, but a great deal of them are close to the stupidity borders.

Sex and the City and Carrie Bradshaw have affected at least a couple of generations. There were girls with such outfits, Agnès, who is into fashion as you know, and I were shocked wondering whether they were dressed up for the occasion, as if in a costumes party, or they were for real. Impossible high heels some couldn’t wear without seeming dumb like ducks, perfect make up, nails and hair which at least took them 2 hours to get ready, and this forced attempt to be the coolest and most trending girl in the place. A bit ridiculous. You can be stylish and be influenced by fashion, but at the end of the day, if you’re such a slave to fashion, you’re just a copycat.

It was really funny to hear some conversations around and realize the level of intelligence and smart talk of people too. Sure not many had read something as simple as The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Thinking this generation is the future, gives m the creeps. not only that, looking great implied being super rude to other people, and also being allowed to look over your shoulder. Terrific people!

Once I’ve criticized everything I saw, I will tell you the best of the whole thing was the beer, which was cheap. Guess not many skinny girls nor models drink much of it, so the price was ridiculous, and we were very glad.

Finally after queuing for 20 minutes we were IN the lounge ready for the shows.

Some Spanish celebrities and other relevant characters I wasn’t aware of, were occupying the firsts rows. All kind of cameras and flashes were allowed, which was very interesting, and the press photographers were at the end of the catwalk, right in front of the models, for better captures.

Agnès was giving me feedback, explaining about the lighting of the shows, focused on remark the outfits for this press, thus, even I wasn’t in the best place, nor with a great equipment, lighting and other circumstances considered, I can’t complain about the pictures I took.

First collection by Leyre Valiente, was very sci-fi inspired, with sheer fabrics sometimes, and other pieces featuring an excess of pleats.

The second collection by Eva Soto Conde, was completely inspired in origami. I did like this one the most, although there were dresses which reminded me of party garlands. Very colourful, this collection was lively.

Again I expected shows to be more extended in length, however everything was really quick, no more than 12 minutes each set.

Models were nice, but nothing to do with Gisele Bundchen or Naomi Campbell. The girls were really young, pale and very very skinny. Agnès had read a comment saying models were healthy icons, but believe me, that’s a fallacy.

Few years ago there was a scandal related to the extreme thinness in catwalks, and there was a standard minimum of BMI (Body Mass Index) marked as to control the models. What I saw yesterday was outrageous, and really can’t imagine how was before. TV really makes people look fatter, now I know that.

We spent 2 ½ hours submitted to super dark and artificial lights, awful disco music, surrounded by this halo of coolness and glamour. Not so glamour after all, professionals are working and you can see that in their attitude, observing, processing and taking notes, and then lots of young people, especially girls and fashion guys, who apparently will be spreading the trends right away.

Was it worth attending? Absolutely. I reckon it was an interesting experience and company, and consequently gossips and laughs, couldn’t be better. From time to time it rules being an intruder or an undercover agent checking what’s going on on the other side.

THOSE LANDSCAPES WAITING FOR ME

When you think of the places you’ve ever been, you come to realize that the world is bigger that we thought when staring at the globe at class when we were kids. It’s actually frustrating because you come to the conclusion you’ve barely seen, what? 5% of it being generous?

You can travel often, but there’s always the Lonely Planet friend, who’s even visited places you weren’t acquainted with their existence. Better not to be a jealous person regarding travels, because it can be depressing.

I love travelling, but don’t see myself as a traveler. First, my economy started being strong enough to assume 10-12 days getaway overseas when I was close to 30, thus for many years I couldn’ afford but purchasing flight tickets to UK to visit my old pals; Second, I’m not as adventurer as to travel as a backpacker, sleeping on the floor and washing in cold water. I’m a pro-civilization girl, with all the comforts of modern life; Holidays aren’t made for suffering, so I’m not interested in visiting places where poverty kicks in your jaw right away. I don’t need that kind rewarding experience in my life. I’m least I’m not ready for that yet.

For the past year I can’t complain at all. I’ve visited some beautiful cities in Europe with the target of attending shows, and it’s been worth experiencing. However, partly because of this consumerist culture and also influenced by my surroundings, the meaning of travelling means to move to a different country. I’m totally broke nowadays, but eventually this situation will change, so I’ll be able to move again and discover the beautiful locations I’ve dreamt of for years.

We have to set imaginary targets, yet feasible at some point, as to create expectations and keep motivation alive.

Despite my urban nature, the truth is that there are certain landscapes I really want to see with my own eyes. These is my Wishlist:

ANTELOPE CANYON, US – In Navajo land, Arizona, this place is full of magic. The sunlight combined with the eroded landscape, slipping into the crack walls, create amazing stamps. The shape and structure of the stones, the palette of tonalities and shades, the feeling of the greatness of Nature. I need to touch and feel those seams.

MIYAJIMA, JP – Unfortunately when I visited Japan in March 2010, weather was rough, and snow was forecasted the days we had scheduled to visit Hiroshima and this beautiful city with the Itsukushima Shrine’s floating Torii. I had unfinished business with the land of the new rising sun, because there are many places I missed, and also would love having renewed memories, as in 2010 the trip was quite revealing in some aspects, and if not on my own, I’d love to share the experience with different company, and move South, moving to Okinawa if possible.

AYERS ROCK, AU – I just need to stare at this huge sandstone in the middle of nowhere in Australia. It really seems something come from outer space, and makes me think of Mars and Close Encounters of the third Kind. The contrast of the red tone against the blue in the sky in unique, and its greatness seems overwhelming.

PATAGONIA – PERITO MORENO, AR – I still don’t know anyone who’s visited Patagonia who got disappointed. Just the opposite. I reckon people come back swearing that’s the most amazing place they’re even seen. And I fully trust those friends who’ve been so passionate when talking about the glacier Perito Moreno. When I’ve been shown pictures I’ve ended up with my mouth wide open , in love with those beautiful postcards.

TECTONIC PLATES, IS – as weird as it seems, I’m completely serious. Iceland is there, isolated and volcanic, and leaving the revolutionary politic measures taken some time ago aside, its complex geology offers amazing landscapes, where all the elements fight for their hegemony. Volcanoes, geysers, fjords, glaciers, and many parks, the Iceland seems to be a rough place for living. Regarding the tectonic plates, it was a documentary about plates and faults, the clashes and movements, which discovered me the images of areas in Iceland when one foot can be in America, and the other in Europe, and I thought that was one of the coolest things I ever heard of, so I wanna step on the two continents at the same time, and take the stupid picture ok me posing with one of my typical stupid #EpicWin faces.

There were two sources of  inspiration for writing this post. On one hand, a phone call I received yesterday from a guy who simply asked me if a job position in Abu Dhabi would be attractive and worth considering  as to move there for a long time, and on the other hand Marita, a girl from Mallorca who I reckon is the most experienced traveler I’ve ever met, and the perfect person to get great tips because she usually keeps these travel diaries describing everything, who answered to a question regarding Abu Dhabi I posted on Twitter right away. You should visit her blog, Trips and Things by M, very inspiring and useful.

One thing left to another and I started thinking which landscapes I must see before I die. Pictures and documentaries are not enough, I want to feel, breath and capture the details not only trough my camera, but also in my mind, just for myself.

This time I encourage you to answer to this post and share with me which landscapes you’d like to see for yourself, at least once in your lifetime. Let’s dream awake and escape from reality at lteast for a while.

A TOURIST IN MY OWN CITY

Do you really know your city? Have you ever visited the most emblematic monuments and buildings (school visits do not count)? I don’t think so.

It doesn’t matter where you live, all places have something worth discovering. A town or a city, as long as they have a story behind, are potential attractions.

Zaragoza, my hometown, is growing bigger and more populated every day, and It seems that I’m acquainted with many remarkable places, both touristic or just for locals only, but still there are many things to discover, and some to recover. Getting to know these places also bring me closer to the history of the city, and forgetting about those endless lessons learnt by heart at school, Zaragoza is absolutely attractive on this regard. Many cultures left their fingerprint in the shape of ruins, walls, churches, palaces…

I’ve been living in Barcelona for more than 8 years now, and despite the fact that I’ve got to know most of the most popular locations, there’s endless fun on the streets. Old buildings in beautiful facades located in Eixample areas, parks, private houses, gardens, beaches…

Believe it or not, I haven’t seen the insides of Casa Batlló, nor Sagrada Familia cathedral. I know, that shouldn’t be tolerated, and for that reason, I’ve decided to become a tourist, while I’m still unemployed.

The idea came out last week, when my friend Arantza was here visiting me for few days. She hadn’t planned anything but admitted she wasn’t too familiar with the city. We didn’t take any subway, and moved by walking all the time, thus we approached several monuments, buildings and cathedrals, visited popular neighbors, and took pictures.

The only cons of my plans are that we are in the middle of the peak season, which means the city is packed with tourists, and also heat striking with humidity is almost unbearable. Still, I’m fully motivated, and have plans of covering different aspects.

Therefore The starting point were the walks I went for with my friend Arantza, and Gràcia fests, and visiting Montjuïc fonts, cemetery and castle, are my next targets, hopefully to be accomplished within this week.

If motivation was there, it’s just happened something which has definitely encouraged me to go on with my photography project. I uploaded some pictures last night, and even though theey were mostly captures of buildings, I thought of adding a couple of shots of street art, which I adore.

One hour ago I received a message regarding this capture a girl saw on Flickr, asking for permission to publish it on Enzo and Nio FB page. What can I say? I feel very flattered.

I’m not a pro, I don’t even shoot in RAW yet, and my photo gear is quite limited, however I got time, I love observing things, and right now, I got plenty of time. It’s easier to take pictures with your mobile device and then upload them on IG, but we all know quality is not the same. From here I encourage you to take your cameras with you (you can carry your compact with you anytime), and stop the world for a second when you see something whose image is worth keeping for good. You’ll be glad in the future, because it’ll bring you nice memories.

And one more thing. Whenever we go out of the city, to a town, a beach, the countryside, the mountains, overseas, or wherever, we take pictures of things we find fascinating because we are in the mood and we’re open to welcome any experience and stimulation… well, you can find those just 50m from home. And remember, the best postcards from a city are the stamps you recreate.

LET’S PLAY THE PHOTOGRAPHER AND THE MODEL

I’m glad my last visit to Madrid was so productive, filling an agenda with plenty of activities we don’t usually carry out when I’m visiting.

I’ve already told you about Hopper’s exhibition, and The Wildhearts’ special program at Viva Las Vegas. There were lots of beers and tapas with friends, and nice walks, but I want  to tell you about one of the funniest activities I shared with Agnès, which I’m looking forward to repeating, related to her blog, From Here to Fashion, photography, nice locations and outfits.

The blog cover many aspects regarding fashion, as you can imagine. Trends, designers, models, complements, vintage shops, photographers… topics which imply a research carried out via Internet, paper magazines, and the quest for inspiration in local shops. It’s not so simple as it might seem, and takes its time.

What has this to do with me? Sure you’re wondering, considering I’m not a fashion addict, even though I’m more interested and updated than it seems. For all the fields I’ve mentioned, my sis can handle by herself, but when it comes to show her own outfits, she modeling herself, in order not to deliver identical and boring pictures assisted by the automatic shooting mode, she needs some help.  Most of times, the appointed photographer is Kiko, and even though we know he’d do whatever for her beloved, he’s not into photography, thus, this outfits improvised sessions are quick, and taken in a very standard manner, so he doesn’t get bored or tired.

Imagine when Agnès asked me if I could take some pictures of her, and I accepted right away…she was so happy!

Agnès is a very controlling and organized person in some aspects in her life, as most of us, there are others in which she’s total chaos. I was amazed he way she handles her blog, scheduling posts, listing the outfits she wants to show, analyzing the complements to wear so everything perfectly matches. Quite impressive really!

You know our styles are totally different, I think mine hasn’t really changed in at least 15 years, but for including some items in my looks, such us make up, hairdo, skirts, tighter t-shirts, bags and glasses. That aside, I’m the kinda jeans and rock/film t-shirts with sneakers kinda girl. Perhaps I should ask Agnès to talk about my style more in depth, as far as I know, all the differences omitted, she likes my style as an important part of my personality.

On the other hand, since I met her many years ago, she’s changed her style completely, from top to bottom.  It’s funny to think what she’s gonna wear next time I’m seeing her. Really unexpected.

Let’s get to the point. I took pics of three outfits in two days, and the locations chosen were really nice.

First place was Campo del Moro gardens, which belong to the Royal Palace. A great variety of vegetation and trees , combined with beautiful fountains, and the quietness ruling, make of this place one of the coolest spots in Madrid.

Agnès was wearing a beautiful dress she found at her favorite vintage shop in the city, complemented with sandals and socks (I’m not into this mixture), and a cane bag resembling to the old fishing ones our grandparents used to carry.

I reckon she enjoyed the session lots, as I was shooting bursts, counting for her to move, and trying to make the whole thing more dynamic and interactive. Moreover, I was trying to cover her requirements regardless, and if I had to lay on the pavement to take a good shot of her sandals, even though I was covered with dust and pine stings after, I wouldn’t care less. I was up to everything.

Second session was that very same day after lunch, but unfortunate it was a quick one, due to terrible heat in the afternoon. We went nearby, to Madrid Rio, a project created at the bank of Manzanares river. It’s become a nice area the locals use for leisure activities and chilling out. Trees were planted but unfortunately haven’t grown up enough as to offer shelter from the killing sun.

This time Agnès was wearing a summer black jumpsuit, short, fresh and comfy, remarked by a pair of with platform sole sandals with a bow in white, quite pin up like.

Sun was so rough on us, she had to borrow my sunglasses to avoid much frowning. I was melting and almost blind, so the pictures were a bit lower profile. Sis, my apologies, I was dehydrating!

We were supposed to come back to Thyssen Museum to see the permanent exhibition, but it was such a wonderful morning at the Prado meadow, lying under the trees, enjoying the breeze and the fresh grass, we decided to spend some time simply for out joy and amusement, taking pictures, chatting and observing the people around. It was a blast!

This dress Agnès was wearing is one of my favorites, blue, red and white. Adorable and super easy to combine. In fact, complements chosen to fit were marvelous and mostly in red, which is my favorite color. A red satchel bag, the red Ray-Ban’s, the flat shoes and the red Swatch. Perfect. and the final touch with the golden bracelets.

It is really an interesting experience to take this kind of pictures. I’m not used to people modeling nor posing for me, nor having to capture details of things. I’m more into bands in motion, buildings, street art, and people in natural attitudes, so this is completely new for me, and I love it. Moreover, the fact that the model is my best friend encourages me to get good results, thus I try my best even though I’m not a pro by all means. Still, my condition as amateur doesn’t have to stop me from learning, trying and working hard as long as I can help my sis.

And finally, not only the best reward is seeing my pictures in her blog, which I encourage you to take a look at, and where you’ll find her outfits better explained, but also seeing her pleased and happy. And of course, the end of the sessions followed by a cold beer at one of these classic taverns, so typical in Madrid. Cheers!

Can’t wait for the next session, sis! Thanks for trusting me 🙂

NEAL CASAL BROUGHT ME RYAN ADAMS & THE CARDINALS TO THE HELLHOUSE

I haven’t talked about live music photography yet, and to be honest, if I had to choose a field to develop my poor skills in, or focus my work onto, live performances and street art would be my main targets.

I find really difficult to capture those intense moments coming from the spontaneity of the band members, the feelings, the passion, and the workspace  is usually terrible. Lights, shades, angles, jacks, annoying mic stands, and even these mobile video units. Now I’m thinking of a picture of Nicke Royale with Imperial State Electric, which could have been awesome but it was completely ruined because of this huge  video mobile arm. It was one of these “Fuck My Life” moments, believe me.

I will refer to outstanding photographers covering this field very soon, but now I’d like to talk about something more special and intimate, Neal Casal achieved through hundreds of pictures, many of them included in his book Ryan Adams & The Cardinals: A View of Other Windows.

This compilation of pictures means trespassing the threshold into the inner world of one of my favorite artists, Ryan Adams, and the band he formed and fronted for approximately 5 years, The Cardinals, which Neal Casal joined in 2005.

Their world, including the writing and recording processes and methods, the band on the road, the relationship among members, the good and bad moments, from happiness to exhaustion, euphoria and solitude, is beautifully reflected here, in a humble way, with no ambitious aspirations but to catch and keep part of their lives and experiences for good.

I’ve always thought Neal Casal is a very emotional artist, with a taste for the beauty in a discrete manner. Whenever I listen to his solo stuff it evokes me some kind of peace. The tandem formed between Neal and Ryan is really complementary, as if the second provided the passion and the guitarist was there to balance and keep things under control.

The fans know by know about Adams’ shyness and mood swings, he’s quite a borderline personality, in my opinion essential to be the genius he is. Casal, seems to be the witness of all his extreme behavior, close enough as not to disturb him either, which hasn’t to be very easy.

The relationship among the members of the band is also interesting. So far, so close, everything changes depending on the circumstances. Being part of a band which spends long time on the road must be rough and strenuous. We have no idea of what two hours show means in terms of effort, work and sacrifice. It’s like a family but implying a responsibility towards a different audience every night, and bread on your table. Your working day doesn’t mean 8h at the office, or the factory, but playing eating, travelling, sleeping…

Adams appreciated the talent of Casal right away, and the covers of Easy Tiger and Follow the Lights Ep are credited to him, together with the albums artwork featuring some of the pictures.

I have to remark another personal issue which makes this book more special, and it’s the fact that there are plenty of pix referring to the European tour in 2007. I was lucky to attend to one of the shows in November 2007, a thrilling and absolutely wonderful night, in which I signed not only a peace agreement with Adams, my filthy hair boy, but also my unconditional love for the rest of my life.

Ryan Adams and The Cardinals split ways in 2009, for many reasons, among others, Adams’ retirement announcement caused by the Ménière’s disease, and later on,  the loss of the bassist Chris Feinstein.

Neal Casal has just released a beautiful album named Sweeten the Distance, keeps on taking pictures which have been published in many established magazines, and nowadays he’s part of Chris Robinson’s Brotherhood. Let’s cross fingers and wait if he manages to let us into this family through his lens.

CALIFORNIA SKATEBOARDING THROUGH LENS – HUGH HOLLAND

One of my biggest frustrations has to do with skateboarding. Do you remember Marty McFly in Back to the Future breaking a soapbox car and creating a skateboard out of it? Well I had a crush on this sport ever since.

Unfortunately its practice has started becoming popular recently, and it has to do more with a fashion trend rather than with the sport itself. Let’s say skateboarding here is for posh and cool people nowadays in Spain. Barcelona is currently full of boards, there are some shitty skate rinks and parks, but the credit has to be given to foreign youngsters.

Pity now it’s too late for me to learn without taking risks involving likely physical consequences at my 30’s I cannot afford suffering.

 I love the concept, the aesthetics of the skaters, their bodies, the movements, the musical philosophy involved, especially with the old school ones, directly attached to rock and metal…

Leaving aside what skate boarding means to me, there was a place and a time, where skate boarding changed radically in its practice. Before it became one of the most popular extreme sports with half pipes and other acrobatics, skateboarding was simply a source of entertainment for the kids in America, comparable to roller skating, and cheaper than a bike.

California hosted the revolution in skateboarding. By now, many of you are acquainted with names such as Tony Alva, Stacy Peralta, Jay Adams, Dogtown and Z-Boys. This was a generation of problem childred. Kids raised in rough home environments, attached to a board as an extension of their body.  Apart from other circumstances and events, many of them were lucky their passion kept them away from the streets and jail, some of them ended deep down in shit.

In the mid 1970’s a major drought in South California, affecting LA especially, caused massive water restrictions, which implied many private swimming pools being drained for long time. The Z-Boys found these pools the perfect place for skating and developing stunning acrobatics, thus they started sneaking into the houses illegally for their pleasure.

Very few managed to witness such early experiences in first person, and Hugh Holland, together with Glen E. Friedman, who I will talk about soon, carried a camera in the right time and the right place, capturing awesome moments of the godfathers of modern-day skate.

Hugh Holland published a compilation of these captures in his book Locals Only. It goes beyond skating, this book reflects this community of kids and their lifestyle, with the boards as the epicenter of their existence.

These guys had an attitude, and appearance and an inner trademark. Their hair bleached, their suntanned well built bodies exhibited as if it was normal, sometimes wearing wasted and ruined Vans and Levi’s, and sometimes just bare feet. Their style is aggressive, their attitude is mean. They were kids, but could be dangerous, and wanted to look tough, and they did. These were the guys who really grew and learned everything from the streets.

It is difficult to sum up the talent and the work of an artist, and a photographer, as they are able to transmit so many feelings and things in a capture, it can be overwhelming sometimes, but if I had to choose a capture to define Hugh Holland, that would be this one, no doubt.

For me, this image is a generation portrait. Little Danny Kwock, in his bathsuit, literally stuck to the board, even though you can observe his feet soles are not firmly leaning on it, his eyes closed and his body surfing as if in ecstasy…this capture is simply awesome!

Enjoying these pictures, regret and frustration comes to my mind once again. I should have tried to slide with a board when I had time even though I was on my own. Nscht!