Carlos was born in Ecudor and lived there until the age of 18, when it was time to go to university. His passion for music particulary British music became obvious to his parents. He was a Beatles kid and when he put the vinyl on for Help, he had no idea who they were, but it was in English so seemed intriguing. He would ask his parents "what's making that noise?" and when he was told it was an electric guitar, he became obsessed and told himself 'I need one of those'. It has always been the guitar for Carlos, his family chipped together to buy him his first one for Christmas when he was 13, all the way from America.
The music school is now known as BIMM, with facilities across Europe and many a successful graduate making it in the world of music. Carlos was one of the first alumni. At the time Carlos was unsure about a career as a session musician, but with Bruce's encouragement he started working whilst still in college. Inevitably Carlos loved every minute of it, to be playing live and getting paid for it was amazing. From these gigs he never looked back. Carlos and Bruce still stay in touch, how could they not, they share the same birthday!
Carlos was in the first batch of students and because it was so small, they had the best musicians teaching them. Guitar genius Guthrie Govan taught Carlos for two years. Govan plays with Hans Zimmer, and the guitar wizard (literally as he has long grey hair) makes magic when he picks up his guitar. Every week was a master class in playing for Carlos.
"Looking back when I tell other guitar players who taught us, they are speechless that we had Guthrie for two years".
Catherine hails from near Liverpool originally and studied Graphic Design at Brighton. After the couple graduated,they got married and the adventure began. They moved to London where Catherine got a job as a graphic designer at a branding agency on Wardour street and Soho became the heart of it for the couple. Catherine had always had a love for photography, and it has always played a part in her graphic work, even at university. When she decided to take the leap from the branding agency, they didnt want to lose her so suggested that she became their in-house photographer. Thrown into photo shoots and learning everything on the job has been the best learning curve for her.
Catherine's photography work focuses on portraiture and nature, she loves capturing a moment that is so fleeting. The fact that you're keeping this precious moment is special. The best portraits are when they feel real and honest.
"It's my favourite way to learn, being a photographer, to see the world, to be curious especially to see such wonder in the natural world. I photograph people and nature and I'm floored so many times by what I see, it's unmatched, it's endlessly inspiring and a joy to call it work, to learn the sitter's story or to be on location, I am constantly refining the craft".
Black and white photography is Catherine's first love. She is inspired by the Magnum group of photographers and their story telling prowess rings true. Their work is outstanding.
The couple are true story tellers, Catherine through her image making and Carlos through his music. They love to travel and their favourite holiday is to get up early and walk around all day with Catherine's camera, stumbling across things and capturing the experience. There is usually a guitar shop enroute! Carlos's guitar collection isn't massive just meticulously put together, he always wanted one great example of each guitar. Really slowly and through years of trading stuff the collection has come together. His '68 Stratocaster is the one he would rescue if he had to! He played one chord on it and knew he had to have it, it's the same era as Hendrix's Woodstock Strat and the dream as a kid was to own one like Hendrix. Carlos loves to play his collection, the couple are obsessed by things being real, old and full of character and not to keep them in glass cabinets. He showed us an acoustic guitar dated from 1948, all they knew is that it came from New York, but what a story the wear marks on the back of the finger board and body tell. Recording and writing his own music has become Carlos's passion and it's wonderful to have the instruments and know what colours each will bring to the song.
More recently Catherine has started to make short films and Carlos has been writing and producing the sound tracks to them. Catherine says " Music is such an important thing in my films, it changes it so much, hearing Carlos's soundtrack to one of my edits brings it to life".
They come at it from both creative angles and the finished piece just feels right. One of Carlos's inspirations is Daniel Lanois, he describes his work like painting with music. Film has always meant alot to Catherine, renting a film from Blockbusters was a rare treat and a treasured time as she was growing up. There are so many similarities between stills and moving images. She likes quiet portraits and she wants her films to have soul. She loves telling stories and her work has a sense of truth and honesty.
They have a studio at the bottom of the garden which is the perfect retreat to work together. the studio also houses Catherines's drum kit, a present from Carlos and they play together when they have time!
We were so happy when Catherine agreed to shoot Carlos at home and vice versa, this couple really do tell a good story whatever medium they use.
To find out more about Catherine's and Carlos's work follow them on Instagram: @Catherinegarciaphoto and @Carlosgarciav