Photographer and lone traveller Francisque Sanchez recalls his memories of exploring Scotland.
Words & Photography: Francisque Sanchez
My name is Francisque Sanchez, I'm a twenty-seven year old travel photographer with a lust for life. I mainly shoot landscapes and wilderness scenes. I'm a loner; a camera and a backpack is everything I need when travelling. I try my best to soak up all the beauty that surrounds me and translate every moment with a photograph, leaving the intangible pieces for the viewer to imagine. I might get broke traveling someday, but I simply can't conceive staying in one place, hopefully I can inspire some people and show that there's something greater out there.
Everyone should experience this adventure at least once while they can. I used to work in a factory when I was just eighteen, dawn and dusk were my only escape from the artificial lights I was conditioned to. Still I would spend these short moments with a camera, capturing what freedom could look like. If you take anything away from this, let it be that wherever you might find yourself, there's always beauty around you. Sometimes it's just hiding and you have to dig a bit deeper.
Last night was magical, Scotland is magical. I found a place to call home for two days or so, in the shape of an old coast guard lookout, standing fiercely on the edge of a cliff overlooking the great sea and outer Hebrides. Unlike others before me, I haven't seen any whales, dolphins or northern lights. I witnessed the nothingness and its singular sound; waves crushing down the shoreline and sea birds in the distance.
A large tanker came by at night, I could hear the rumble of the engines breaking through the darkness. I had dinner by the candle lights facing the windows, reflecting the cold glow of this ethereal scene. That night I enjoyed a Scottish beer thinking about how far away from everything I was and how good it felt, to be alone.
I witnessed a peculiar show that left me in awe for most of the night. I was on the northernmost point of the Isle of Sky, where rolling hills ablaze next to the ice cold sea kept burning all through the night with the most intense yellow and vibrant red colours. The morning after I learned this was scheduled every year to promote new growth. I missed the northern lights show because of this event, it'll be postponed for yet another adventure.
I've always dreamed of witnessing a lenticular cloud formation, it might not have been the clearest example but it certainly made me pull over onto the side of the road in the middle of the Highlands and snap a shot. These moments, where nothing other than what's in front of me matters. It sends shivers down my spine, when everything collides in harmony and I'm left with myself, just a spectator of time. Here are some of these moments, somewhere in the Highlands of Scotland.