Ramiro Lopez shares with us the series of instant photographs that he's shot with his Lomo'Instant Automat. Get to know him better in this interview.
Welcome to the Lomography Magazine Ramiro! Tell us a bit about yourself
Hello! I am a manchego who is in love with music, especially electronic. I live in Madridejos, a town near Toledo. This is where I have my studio, my place and a lot of friends and family. I love getting back to the quiet of the town after the hustle that goes with every trip.
Tell us about your first steps in the world of music
My first contacts were through radio programmes. I still couldn't go to clubs, because I was underage and Internet had not yet invaded our lives, so that's where I discovered the first sets by electronic artists. But when I really fell in love with this world was when I saw the first live acts. Feeling the energy and the connection of the DJ with the audience made me say to myself that I had to do it. My brother and me bought two record players, a mixer and a few vynils, and that's how it all began.
What advice would you give to yourself 15 years ago?
It will come! Be patient. Enjoy, taste, feel every moment, every step of the journey. Look towards the future, but always from the present. And start producing music already! You're being slow.
What is it that sets your musical creativity in motion? What is the main ingredient of your music?
I can find ideas in any place and moment. My phone is full of notes, voice recordings, etc. I try to bring my emotions to the dance floor. To make dance music, but with soul.
Tell us about your collaborations with other artists. Is it important to work with others to keep on growing personally as an artist?
I have worked with many during my career. With all of them I share points of view and the way we understand music. On top of that, most of them are very good friends of mine. Fusing your ideas with those of another person usually leads to interesting results. I am always open to learning, and sharing a project with another artist is a good way of doing that. Although I do try to keep a balance. I do collaborations, but do place more importance on my individual work.
¿Nos puedes hablar de las fotos que has sacado con la Lomo'Instant Automat?
Can you tell us about the photos you've taken with the Lomo'Instant Automat?
During this time, I took my camera with me to many of the cities that I have visited on my gigs. I've also tried to mould different aspects which define me. From Stockholm to Ibiza, passing through Consuegra (the town next to mine) and a few in the studio, which is definitely where I spend most of my time with my cacharros.
I have to say that it has been a real challenge! I'm new to analogue photography and I normally use the camera on my phone, with which you end up taking lots of shots to then select the one you like best. With Lomo'Instant everything is old school: every take is a photograph and there's no going back. I have taken a few risks, investigating and trying out different techniques. I have made mistakes and thrown away a few of the instants. I am presenting to you a selection of many.
What do you think about instant photography?
It might not be the most convenient way of taking photographs, but exactly because of that, I think it's more special. It is a very interesting world that I was not aware of and which I will look into more from now on.
Photography is also an art. While taking photos, have you adopted a similar vision to the one you use when playing music?
As I was telling you, before starting to shoot, I read a number of tutorials and drenched myself with many different techniques and tips. I have tried an infinity of things, a lot of them without success. The idea has been not to stay on the simple photo, but to go beyond that... this is a maxim that I always keep in mind in my music: offer the best of myself, evolve and make mistakes in order to learn.
What's your favourite photo of the series and why?
The Kiss with my nephew Jorge. He's the little one in the family and my godson as well. I love him a lot. The photo was taken during the yearly family holiday, which usually takes place in December. He is also a very lively boy and dances a lot when he sees a video of his uncle in action. He's got the bones of an artist!
Right now I am hidden away in the studio preparing music for this year. The music label Drumcode and my own (Odd Recordings) are my objectives. And I will combine that with gigs and trips around the world (looks like there will be many in 2018). I will visit a multitude of cities, many of them for the first time, which is always exciting. In essence, to keep on enjoying what for me is the best job in the world! To make people happy through music is top.