One of the best things to do in Barcelona is go exploring with a camera in hand. (Photos: V. Opoku)
A spontaneous trip in the summer of 2014 was all it took to convince Vincent Opoku that Barcelona could be home. After 16 years in London, the Ghana-born photographer, also known as V, was looking for a change. August 2016 marks one year in his new home.
Barcelona is a photographer’s dream. “It’s relatively small, so it’s easy to get from one side to the other,” he says. “It has an interesting mix of people and cultures and a variety of landscapes, from mountains to city to sea.”
While he usually shoots with a FujiFilm X-Pro1 when he’s working (mostly weddings) and an X100s for fun, he likes that with a phone, “you don’t have to think about taking it out, it’s part of you.” He’s a big fan of the photo apps VSCO (shooting and editing) and RNI Films (editing).
When it comes to deciding what to post on Instagram, “great light and a human element are my two go-tos,” he says. However, his goal is to live in the moment first and, if he can capture the experience in an image, shoot after.
Here he shares his five most IG-worthy spots in BCN.
1. Bunkers del Carmel
“Built on Rovira’s hill as anti aircraft batteries during the Spanish civil war, Bunkers del Carmel offers one of the best 360-degree views of the city. It’s a great spot for sunset picnics. If you can get up there for sunrise, you’ll be blown away.”
“Although technically not Barcelona, Badalona is just a 15-minute bike ride away and a place I visit frequently. It feels like a grittier, smaller version of Barcelona; I prefer the beaches, and the water is clearer than that of BCN. The pier is a must as it offers a nice walk or ride ‘into’ the sea.”
“I love exploring Montjuïc by bike. It offers the chance to view Barcelona from above without getting out of the city. It’s big so it’s easy to just explore one area, but with a little persistence you’ll be rewarded with secret gardens, Poble Espanyol, the Olympic Stadium and a castle that sits at the summit.”
4. El Born
“Narrow streets, pockets of light and surprises around every corner. El Born is a hipster’s paradise with good places for coffee, beer and unique clothing. The city’s coolest co-working space, Espai Born, is also here.”
5. El Prat Airport Viewpoint
“Airplanes fascinate me, so I try to get as close to them as possible whenever I can. This is a little out of town, but it’s worth the trek (especially if you have a thing for planes).”