Màlaga Recap

Photo by Malia Campbell -- click to see large

Good Grief! I leave for Brissie in just 2 days, and I still haven’t written up anything about Spain!

Pictured above is the Rogue’s Gallery – the lineup from the Wednesday workshop. Right to Left: Anton Puttemans, Alejandro Villanueva, Yours Truly, Errol Lopulalan, John Lovås, Charles MacKenzie, Tor Jensbakken, Aleksander Jacobsen.

Below is the group from the Thursday session: Right to Left: Alejandro Villanueva, Alexander Scherbakov, Brian MacLochlainn, Jukka Toylii, Andrey Shtylenko, Yours Truly.


These guys are hard-core photographers. They came from Italy, The Netherlands, Norway, & Spain. (Actually, we had no real Spaniards; ours came originally from The Dominican Republic, and Great Britain originally). They came to Màlaga and spent a long day shooting one of the best workshop venues I’ve ever taught in. There were more cool compositions than you could possibly shoot in an entire day.

Photo by John Løvas

This place was awesome. La Zagaleta was generous to a fault in letting us in to shoot here; the biggest problem was trying to reconcile the space we were working in to the everyday stuff we shoot at home! At just over 13 00 square meters (4200 square feet) it was an architectural photographer’s dream — soaring spaces, lines and geometry eve rywhere, flooded

Photo by Alejandro Villanueva

with Mediterranean light. La Zagaleta goes first-class with everything; the art on the walls was from the Poligono Gallery in Marbella, Spain, and featured Asian photographers Rao Songqing, Liu Baomin, and Huang Y an. Th es e works were amazing – walking around this house and looking at the immense large-format prints was like being in an art mus eum.

We started the day with a quick lecture covering flash basics, and getting a common vocabulary down for what terms like “bare-bulb” and “WAD” meant. Then we broke out some lights and started shooting. A step-by-step buildup of a medium-complex shot evolved over the next 45 minutes or so, with time taken to review each shot on the laptop, then placing the next light. With that one in the can, we broke up into groups of 2 and headed upstairs to try out those techniques in the relatively simple bedrooms.

These guys tore through the bedrooms and laughed…clearly I needed to challenge them a bit more. So, we headed for the master bathroom for a quick discussion of how to handle mirrors, reflective surfaces, intense windows, and compositional challenges. Getting the shot involved a couple of lights, and a giant cowhide rug held up to block some wayward sunlight by a couple of volunteers.


We broke for lunch, did a quick debrief, and then got to work shooting the dramatic downstairs spaces.

Some of the comps practically shot themselves, allowing us to focus more on composition and accent lighting, but some (like the kitchen) were extremely challenging, and took a lot of effort. Here are a few examples:

Jukka shooting; Me holding a reflector and speedlight! Photo by Alejandro Villanueva

Photo by Scott Hargis

Photo by Andrey Shtylenko

Photo by Brian MacLochlainn

Photo by Alejandro Villanueva

Photo by Brian MacLochlainn

Here are a few candids from the day — all taken by Malia Campbell:

I’ll end this on a personal note — Malia made a cool video chronicling the 29-hour-each-way journey from Oakland to Marbella, Spain: check it out!



10 responses to “Màlaga Recap

  1. The language in the newspaper was…. Dutch! I didn’t recognize the newspaper, so maybe it was a newspaper from Belgium. Then the language is Flemish, which is very similar to Dutch. :-)

  2. Great, great, great!!What a trip. Love the video.

  3. Really nicely done photographs. Congratulations on a great job. I bet the photos you were dissing are incredible too. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Hi there, to you both. Great video clip. I remember you did mention the music to this clip. Would love to know if you have the name at hand. Many thanks. Regards. Charles. Malaga workshop

  5. Scott. Thanks for that. Often think about the workshop especially when I am shooting. Going over in mind the excellent pointers that we all learned on that valuable day. Thanks again . Charles