Ignacio Peláez Mella, better known as Nacho, is a professional photographer and avid adventurer. With the extension of the camera as his source of expression, he tells tales of the human experience.
Born in Madrid, Spain, Ignacio cultivated a thirst to understand his inner being by experiencing the colors of life through the cultures of the world. While traveling through the five continents, the realization of the immense variety of life became apparent. Each experience giving a piece in his creative development. He discovered the element of water as his main source of inspiration through the art of free-diving.
At seventeen I travelled to Austrailia and as fate would have it, I had the opportunity of going through the open water course. My first experience of truly exploring what is underneath. I observed massive thriving corals and the island, Upolu Cay, as it would disappear and reappear with the flowing tide. Captivated by the mysteries of the sea, I recollected my childhood love for treasure hunting and the memory of my grandfather naming me “Pirata” translated to pirate.
It was during that experience when I fell in love with the underwater world and imagined one day to be able to capture the beauty from that trip and to share it with others.
From there I proceeded to attain a Bachelor of Arts degree in Professional Photography from the University of Abertay in Edinburgh, Scotland. In 2015 I fulfilled my dive master course. Later, through life events my path was lead to the free-diving discipline. I find this practice to be most free and sustainable way to move in the water. It is the perfect skill that allows accessibility to underwater photography.
Finally, all the pieces came together for me to move forward with my dream of taking the camera underwater and finding those treasures hidden beneath.
My aim with photography is to induce emotion through the faces and spaces of natural environments, to shed light on sensitive connections.
I believe the mission of every artist is to enhance our own creativity and transmit it in a way that enhances the imagination of others. Art is the material medium which inspires the mind, heart and soul. It leads to igniting creativity, one of the most significant reasons we are all here. For me, it is the revolution of life and the beauty which leads us to the center within ourselves. That place of home we carry everywhere we go, some would refer to it as the Temple of Solomon.
A life without art is like a garden without flowers.
You can easily find me holding my breath under the water throughout the world, observing how the light behaves in this element.
Seasonally based in multiple places which include; the Red Sea Dahab, Sinai, The Mediterranean as well as the coast lines of Mexico, Sea of Cortez, and Riviera Maya.
From the land to the depths, I am currently merging my two passions of capturing images and free-diving to bring awareness in the space of the underwater world with one breath photography as well as the multitude of captivating beauty that the land offers.
Free-diving is accessible to most, however, when it is developed for a professional life it demands particular discipline to prosper. Just as is takes great care for the alpinists to climb to the top of a mountain, it takes consistent conscious choices to be able to dive safely to the depths. The combined elements of proper nutrition, on land movement practices, and breathing exercises are the perfect recipe for a healthy lifestyle with the focus of efficient diving.
Aside from a lifestyle choice, the support of good gear is a vital aspect for success in the process of making this kind of art. As a conscious choice, I prefer to utilize ambient lighting to complement the natural surroundings.
Aquatica Housing 5D Mark IV
Canon 5D Mark IV
Canon 5D Mark II
Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L iii USM SLR
Canon 24-70mm f/2.8 ii USM