Documentary: Look through the lens at the Picos de Europa

Join Juan Antonio Flecha on his quest to become an expert cycling photographer in this new GCN+ documentary

Clock15:40, Tuesday 26th September 2023

Have you ever wondered what it takes to capture the best cycling images? After discovering a new passion for photography, former pro rider Juan Antonio Flecha certainly has.

In the newest GCN+, Flecha is joined by renowned cycling photographer Camille McMillan for a masterclass in the keys to composition, intention and the wonder of pairing cycling with one's camera.

The two friends head to the Picos de Europa, a lesser-known mountain range in the north of Spain with limestone peaks and verdant mountain landscapes to delve into it.

The mountains often play significant roles in the Vuelta a España, with climbs like the Lagos de Covadonga and this year the Cruz de Linares. In his past life, that may have been Juan Antonio Flecha’s main interaction with these peaks, but the mountains are also perfectly suited to test out his new passion for photography.

Juan Antonio and Camille frolic with sheep, ride the gnarled gravel roads of the Parque Nacional de Picos and enlist the help of Juan Antonio’s ex-teammate and three time world champion, Óscar Freire, as their model cyclist on the shoot.

Watch: Legend: Óscar Freire on GCN+

The idea being that working closely together will provide Flecha the skills he needs to create the perfect image as he looks to develop (sorry!) his interest in the world of cycling photography.

Camille is full of helpful tips and advice. “I often use the line of the road to describe the frame,” Camille explains about how he directs his lens when shooting cyclists.

“If it's a racing picture I will go via the landscape and then wait for the rider to be in that landscape, but also imagine where the line will be and try to work out how your eye will move around to that point where the rider will be.

“It's about suggesting something rather than capturing that precise bead of sweat coming off someone's forehead. It's about an idea or location. For me, that's my thing.”

If you're interested in learning more about the art of photography and more specifically why cycling is a splendid endeavour to pair with it, or you're just looking for an excuse to watch some fabulously wild and wonderful footage of the Asturian mountains, then this could be the film for you.

Picos is out now on GCN+! Watch on demand and explore our extensive collection of exclusive and original cycling films.

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