Barcelona, September 2013
"To collect the world together in images" is the creative philosophy followed by María Revuelta and Nuria del Moral. The two photographers crossed path in 2008 and have continued to establish their own name within the professional photography circles. They are Las Coleccionistas.
How did you meet and start working together?
Nuria: We met during photography studies in EMAV in Barcelona. We did a lot of projects together, including the final folio. Afterwards, we each studied separately, María photojournalism, and I humanities and also did a postgraduate in documentary photography. After this, I went to Edinburgh and María to Strasbourg, and then we both returned and launched Las Coleccionistas. We were friends, and although when we left abroad we both did our own separate projects, when we returned, we decided to continue with photography and to team up for a project. We understand each other really well when we are photographing. There are times when one of us has a clear idea of composition and just grabs the camera and shoots.
Do you remember taking your first picture and the occasion?
Nuria: I started taking photos with my grandfather’s camera; he was a very keen photographer.
María: I remember clearly the first photograph I shot. It was of my godmother in Menorca and I shot it with my mother’s camera that was a Canon 35mm. I was seven years old and my mother had to explain to me how to focus, it was fun. And there is a photo! (smiles)
Where do you get your inspiration from?
In general, we try not to be inspired by specific photos or photographers. When it is a personal project, we are usually inspired by cinema or literature. It can range from a short story by Cortázar to a scene from a movie by Kaurismaki.
Which profession other than yours would you like to try?
María: I would like to be an explorer, although I think by now everything has been discovered (smiles). I also like the cinema, I could work in that field, to be somebody like a cinematographer, but it has to be something creative.
Nuria: I like people that fix things. I always have been drawn to fixing cameras or technical things. It doesn’t mean that I have the skills, but when someone tells you that this is his profession you think “how cool!”.
Tell us something about the neighbourhood you live in?
Nuria: I live in en Poblenou and what I love about it is that it is close to the sea and although it has changed a bit since the beginning of the 22@ project, it continues to be this type of village where everyone knows each other and has everything. I also like walking through the industrial areas on Sundays when nobody is around. It is very relaxing to be able to think while walking surrounded by the warehouses.
María: I live in Gracia and I like it a lot as it is in good distance from the city center and has the tranquility on one hand and on the other it is just 5 minutes away from loads of bars, restaurants, clubs and my favorite cinema in Barcelona, Los Verdi.
Do you collect anything?
Nuria: No. In fact, people call us and want to sell us their antiques because they think we are some kind of antique collectors. They have offered us stamps, gems and Svarowski figurines.
María: We have planned to make a project related to this theme that could turn out to be a lot of fun… but we can’t say anything at the moment!
What do you do when you need a break from the everyday?
María: I do yoga every morning.
Nuria: I dance swing. We like to travel for a while to disconnect.
We also plan to do other projects besides photography. It can be everything from jewelry, embroidery and the latest idea has been to make printed silk scarves.
What is your favourite city and why?
María: I am fascinated by Mexico. I am attracted to the craziness of the Calaveras, the offerings to the dead and the colourfulness.
Nuría: I would like to go to San Francisco, but my dream is to travel to any country in South America.
What was the last great meal you ate and where was it?
Nuria: The other day my mother made me a roast lamb for my birthday that was delicious.
María: The last time I have treated myself was in the restaurant Saboc, grabbing some reinvented tapas. I really liked the egg cooked in low temperature with potato foam and shaved ham – total deliciousness.
Sea or Mountains?
We really like the Mediterranean.
Ship or plane?
Our dream is a small boat on the Balearic coast.
Bicycle or moto?
Bike. We like to cycle through the city.
Vermouth or beer?
Depends on the occasion.
Bikini or swimsuit?
We both prefer swimsuit, but almost always use bikinis.
Fellini or Godard?
Sophia Loren or Brigitte Bardot?
“Less is more” or “More is more”?
Less is more and more is less.
Early bird or night owl?
María: Absolutely an early bird.
Nuria: Depends, sometimes I have great moments of inspiration in the night.
Photos: Wai Lin Tse