This weekend an habitual 21-year-old runner in The Running of the Bulls was given as a birthday present the book,“The bull: a life in images” (Toro: una vida en imágenes) by Gorka Azpilicueta and Arsenio Ramírez authors of the web page ‘Along the paths of the bull’ (Por las rutas del toro). The father of the aforesaid runner was the first person, at the launching of the book in Pamplona three days ago, to buy a copy of the book.
“The bull: a life in images” contains some 320 images about the life of the fighting bull, taken in 58 different bull-ranches from the 100-odd in total which were visited by the two authors, Gorka and Arsenio since they started making visits to bull-ranches back in the year 2000. The two men first met at a meal and soon afterwards they began making their visits and using photography equipment which was lent to them by relatives of theirs. Their hobby of watching the bulls in their natural surroundings in the countryside soon evolved into a habit of taking photos of the animals and now all of us can enjoy looking at the wide selection of snapshots of those privileged moments enjoyed by the authors.
Both at the launching in Pamplona as well as the one made in Logroño, there were more than 200 people in attendance at each event. Gorka Azpilicueta as well as Arsenio Ramírez both wished to make it clear that this book arose from their friendship “This is a book made between friends. That is what has brought it to light. Arsenio and myself produced the images, our friends at Welldone provided the art and the models; Esprinta did the printing and Gorka Cía did the editing and the video is from Jokin Pascual…”
Jokin Pascual, a professional photographer carried out the task of creating the video presentation of this book. He reveals the story behind the creation of the book and the moves taken by the authors from an urban setting towards a rural setting, alongside the bull. Pascual used a RED Scarlet camera and his taste for quality images can be deduced from this book launching as he reveals the quality and interest that went into the making of this book. Pascual made the observation that “all the video reveals my own style in every image, but if I want to underline one moment from the video it is when we making a sweeping turn and move from the machine to the countryside. That is what this book is – a piece of the countryside in your hands.”
As well as the images, the texts are also the work of Gorka and Arsenio, but there is also a prologue written by Antonio Purroy and an epilogue from Salvador Magallanes.
And before finishing, we could not resist asking the question if the authors had put themselves in danger in getting some of the photos that were taken: “No, we were not in any danger. We always worked under controlled conditions. There is always someone there to help you. You are with friends from the bull-ranches who open the doors to their homes to you and you keep to the rules of the each house. There is a profound respect for the fighting bull and the lines are never overstepped at any time.”