After such a great success last year there was no way that such an excellent light painting conference as FESTiFOTO could not repeat the experience in 2020 and, against all the odds, by complying with all the covid and social distancing regulations, the organizers were able to make it happen.
Ever since we attended the first ever edition of FESTiFOTO, last year in Canals, we haven’t been able to stop thinking about returning. Initially, we were scheduled to be there in March, when the conference was planned but, thanks to the global situation with respect to COVID 19 at that point, it wasn’t possible to hold the conference and it had to be rescheduled.
In the hope that the situation would improve, it was decided to reschedule for the last weekend in October and, after months of uncertainty, culminating with some stressful last-minute changes to the covid rules, we were finally able to attend!
The first thing that we want to mention is the enormous amount of effort and the incredible work that the members of the AFCA photographic society have put in to allow FESTiFOTO to take place and to ensure that the conference followed the strictest covid security measures possible.
On top of all that, they were even able to organise live streaming of the entire event, which allowed them to have hundreds of visitors from across the world regardless of their covid situation – this was only made possible by Xuso Tabernes– a fantastic professional who set up everything necessary to stream FESTiFOTO live and worldwide.
In situations like those that we have all lived through over the last year, every day comes with new surprises and, as expected, there were a few last minute setbacks to contend with – 2 of the 4 presenters who were expected to give talks at the conference were unable to attend, Pedro Real y Dario Cuesta– you were very much missed and we hope to see you both at next years conference.
Our story started early on Friday morning. After passing through two police covid checkpoints without issue, Jose Vicentete Micó, Antonio Martinez y Alejandro Muñoz met up with us to grab a bite to eat, recharge our batteries and discuss the final details for the fantastic day we had planned for Saturday.
We were of course full of energy to finally be able to meet up with some of our light painting Friends who we had not been able to see in ages, such as Jose Moroño, Carles Calero, Carles Domenech ,Yoly Hermida and Loren Rovira.
What was a bit strange however was not being able to do what we enjoy best – night photography and messing about with lights. Thanks to the curfew that was in place at the time, we all had to be back in the house by 12 midnight – like Cinderalla!
On the other hand, we were at least able to enjoy some great moments and laughter, surrounded by fantastic light painters.
When we woke up in the morning, the big day had finally arrived. We ate breakfast in the hotel and were ready for action!
On entry into the conference, everything was already under control: temperature tests, brand new FFP2 masks available and obligatory for all the attendees, certifications, free gifts from the association, seats taped off to ensure social distancing, live streaming ready to go – it was time to start the conference!
To get us started and give us a taste of what was to come Raul Albert, representing Olympus, presented their latest news.
That done, the first of the presenters was Alexandro Muñoz who came all the way from Seville, in his flip flops, to tell us about – and demonstrate the creation of – his series of light flowers.
Next up Antonio Martinez walked us through how he got started in nighttime photography and light painting, as well as his work with silhouettes, macros, miniatures and much much more…
At the end of the first half of the conference we went to visit the exhibition of selected photos from the presenters which was being held in the museum of culture and, afterwards, we went for lunch before returning to the conference.
Next up it was Yoly Hermida’s turn. Despite having to put together a talk at extremely short notice, she surprised us all with a great session in which she demonstrated her technique of light painting vegetables.
To bring the conference to a close it was over to Carles Calero, who spoke about Light Painting from Pablo Picasso onwards, covering the various styles of light painting and how they can be applied.
Without a doubt, this year was a completely different conference due to the inability to have large numbers of attendees, but it was no less a success. The huge effort that had been put in to ensure that FestiFoto could continue bore fruit and we were able to partake and enjoy a cultural event – something which is harder and harder to find these days.
For those of you who missed it, the entire event is available to stream here – complete with comments and feedback from grateful attendees from all parts of the world who joined us from first thing in the morning.
Finally, we would like to remind everyone that – until 11th November – you can obtain a 15% discount on all our products using the code LPPFESTIFOTO.
Many thanks to AFCA for all the work that you put in to promote light painting and allow this conference to take place. We are looking forward to the FESTiFOTO 2021 edition even more than ever!