Skilled hands, meters of yarn, a cozy village house living room and the whole afternoon to chat away and craft those tiny leather balls that fly so fast.
After being introduced to Angel during one of the pelota matches I shot, I finally met him in his scenic mountain home in Benimantell, a village perched on a hill at the foot of Aitana range, where winter afternoons are chilly, fireplaces roaring and plenty of time is available to patiently sew pelotas:
On his living room table an apparent mess of pincushions, needles, leather stripes, spools of yarn comes to life when his sits down and starts cutting and sawing while telling stories about life in these hidden mountain villages.
Players think highly of his work, as he has found the right degree of hardness and the balls bounce just enough from facades and cobblestone streets. Angel is particularly proud of the fact that he has recently gained status of authorized provider for the regional Pelota Association, meaning his work is up to the standards of the best artisans in Spain:
It was a delightful afternoon with good coffee, better conversation and a relaxed shoot while Angel finished a couple of dozen balls with his skilled and surprisingly quick hands.
Photos on pelota matches and Angel´s craft can be found in this stock collection: Pelota