Back to Spain with a Shoulderpod


Spain held its most exciting election in a generation in December (so exciting they are holding another one six months later!) and I wanted to sketch out some of the more interesting issues in three features I produced in the run-up to polling day.

Traveling around by train over 8 days, I went to Murcia in the south-east to report on anxiety over the educational system, Zamora in the north-west on depopulation, and Barcelona on the housing crisis. The ideas had come to me through studying Eurostat surveys of public opinion in the regions. Every interview was an honour to take.


Each piece led off with a video which I filmed (BBC camera app) and edited (Voddio) on my iPhone in the field, only sending back to London for publication. What a contrast to my trip to Spain for the European elections in 2014, when I was uploading stacks of clips and dopesheets for each video to be edited in London, such as this feature on how unemployed Spaniards pass the time.

For the first time, I took a full-length Velbon tripod and a Shoulderpod grip, 2 items that eased my work immensely. So light was the Velbon under my shoulder I thought at one stage I had forgotten it on a platform of the Barcelona Metro, and doubled back to look for it! With the strap of the Shoulderpod, that lovely piece of kit manufactured in Barcelona, I felt much more secure running about with the phone.

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By the time I flew out I was physically shattered (but could hardly have been happier as I’d met all my deadlines), as you can see from the photo below, taken on a Barcelona doorstep.


Pressure of time meant I was unable to use social media as  much as I would have liked but I did experiment with Periscope for the first time for interviews and, for the first time, uploaded some of my rushes to YouTube, such as this quick run through my trip. The aching guitar music here, by the way, is someting I recorded in a pedestrian subway.