Interview with our featured travel photographer: Matthieu Roubinet!

Did he impress you? Our crazy travel team was impressed as well!! Read this interview and enjoy the beauty of south west France seen by this passionating photographer 😉

1)      In France, there are many different landscapes… and mountains! Why are you so fascinated by the Pyrénées ?

I was born in Toulouse and grew up in Pau, in the south west of France. The National Park of Pyrénées, a little bit of paradise, is only an hour’s drive away. So, it was only natural that these mountains fascinated me: at first, when I was a child, I explored it through hiking with my family. Then, it was for the photography: I really wanted to immortalize and share the magic moments experienced in these mountains, which have plenty of amazing landscapes!

2)      How can you take a picture that will best highlight the beauty of the landscapes?

First of all, I think that the capacity to be amazed and moved by the shows offered by the Nature there are the most important things! They have an impact on the way we feel and see our world. The research of the right centering becomes easier and improves as you’re taking pictures.

Despite our crazy technology evolutions of the past few years, our devices are not like the human eyes and can’t show the strong gaps of luminosity at the same time! To solve this weakness, I use grad filters which allows me to reduce these gaps and allows the captors to catch more details! The numeric development of the pictures is also important: I adjust colors and contrasts to obtain the best photography possible, the one that will show what I felt when I took it.

3)      What photography session was the more difficult/unusual for you ? Why?

In general, I’m often running after the sun, device in my hand, or I’m doing a kind of balancing act on rocks to find a nice centering! But one photography session in particular was very very hard!! It was last year in the Circus of Gavarnie, an impressive and beautiful valley within the mountains. I wanted to take a picture of the waterfall that reaches a high of 400 meters. To reach it is already something epic as the last meters are on a rocky and sloping field with the waterfall sprays! When you arrive there, you’re already completely wet and the noise is unbelievable but there is a REAL breathtaking view!

I wanted to take a picture at the base of the waterfall with a big angle, but it was quite chaotic! Light was very difficult to manage, the sun was just on the waterfall, the sprays kept washing my filters the whole time and it was impossible to check the pictures I took with my device!! All of a sudden, sprays changed their direction thanks to a right wind allowing me to take the right picture! I was wet and tired but it was worth it.

 4)      How are you feeling when you’re in the mountains?

A great feeling of freedom and escape! I’ve a solitary temperament and to hike alone in the Pyrénées allows me to feel the environment better and be one with Nature. It’s an exhilarating experience. This is impressive and I feel humble in these mountains, in front of the greatness of the Nature, which can be welcoming and austere. I believe that it has an impact on how you see and photograph them.

5)      If you were going to have a trip, what mountains would you like to capture with your device and why?

I have to admit that the highest summits of our planet don’t attract me yet. Without going out of France, the Alps seem disproportionate compared to the Pyrenean. Otherwise, the “Picos de Europa” in Spain seem to hold a strange attraction for me. Other mountains such as the “Torres Del Paine” or the “Fitz Roy” in Chili and Argentina would also be great trips to put on my bucket list.

6)      What piece of advice would you give to someone who would like to discover you Pyrénées?

There are many things to see and to do there: The Pyrenean mountains stretch 400 km, from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean sea, between Spain and France! The best way to discover them is to live on their rhythm by tasting the different climates and ecosystems and by preserving this beauty of the nature for the generations to come.

The famous waterfall with whom our photographer had so many difficulties to capture!

Le cirque de Gavarnie, Hautes-Pyrénées, France

Facing the elements