Peter Hendrie and Charlie Waite have recently returned from their second tour to Andalucía, in search of the rich almond blossom trails that line the eastern slopes of the snow-capped Sierra Nevada mountain range. Here are their thoughts on what was clearly a stunning trip . . .
“One just can't comprehend the sheer scale of this landscape. Hectares upon hectares of various shades of white and pink, juxtaposed against the dark trunks of the almond groves, and cascading down the slopes from the high hills above Torvizcón to the valley floor below. Our group spent four nights based in Lanjarón, which is to the east of the region. We stayed in the Hotel Castillo, a spacious hotel with good size rooms - and ample space to store all of our photographic equipment! Just perfect.
Our first two days were spent intensively amongst the almond groves, capturing the blossom
in its various guises, nestling under the Sierra Nevada mountain range and depicting the sheer scale that unfolded before us. We endeavoured to cover an array of techniques from macro to telephoto, wide angle to panoramic, colour to black and white - and even venturing into the realms of multiple exposures. Techniques which most of our group found quite challenging, and in some instances out of their comfort zone - which is something that we, as photographers, need to embrace from time to time.
These two long days were really rewarding, and the feedback that we received was very encouraging indeed, to the point that we could have stayed there even longer and still managed to capture more stunning images! Most of our third day was spent in and around the jewel of Granada's crown, the wonderful Moorish Palace; the Alhambra. The intricately carved domed ceilings and arches offered wonderful close-up opportunities of detail subjects, portraying the stunning craftsmanship which the Moors imparted on this area, and in particular the Alhambra - once seen never forgotten.
The end of this day was spent capturing stunning images of the palace bathed in warm evening light, which engulfed the city from the right - with the Sierra Nevada perfectly positioned behind the Alhambra in the distance. We shot from across the city at the Mirador St. Nicolas, in a beautiful old square were many congregate at the end of the day to witness this spectacular view.
On our last morning we returned to the hills to successfully capture images of terraced almond groves, beautifully back-lit against the slopes - their stark trunks contrasting against the highlights of the blossom, as the sun crept over the horizon and illuminated the scene. It was sheer magic! Then our last stop was to photograph a beautiful white-washed Andalucían village, nestling against a backdrop of reeds and river bed, meandering through the valley floor – before sadly heading back to base, to load up our luggage for the journey home.
Conclusion - can't wait for next year’s tour to come around! If this year was anything to go by, then our next tour to capture the almond blossom in Andalucía, could and should be amazing. See you there!”
Peter and Charlie
All images copyright Peter Hendrie
Post By Charlie Waite