World of silhouettes…

Mars Maritime Garden

Mar’s maritime garden

Silhouettes are those shapes whose forms we can intuit just by their borders… inside them there is a plain mystery with details, colors and stories hide from us.

Perhaps that is the fascination with silhouettes, in our hope that nothing is empty or meaningless they invite us to create stories to explain them.

errant in a long travel

Errant in a long travel

Sparks in orange

sparks in orange

Very often silhouettes belong to the kingdoms of duks and dawn, but not always…

Silhouette framed by a wave in turquoise

Silhouette framed by a wave in turquoise (published before)

Sleepy Sun

Sleepy Sun ~_~

Hand waving its fingers

hand waving its fingers

2D Tower

2D Tower (published before)

A desire of outside

a desire of outside

celestial

Campiña (published before)

distant borders

Distant borders (published before)

powerful wings

powerful wings (published before)

luces distantes

luces distantes

A knot with the sun

a knot with the sun

sharp and distant lady

sharp and distant lady

Of course with the technology of current cameras we can illuminate what seems a pure and total shadow; but a world without mystery would lose so many beauty as we fill the shadows with our dreams…

Emerging rock

emerging rock

 

Thoughts about Instagram

sooiiniicool-teextrao-teamo-teadoro-soy-tuyo-y-t-eres-ma-crear-un-mundo-para-nosotros-donde-slo-existamos-t-y-yo-cloudy-landscape-fujifilm-fujifilm_xseries-desert-hills-sadness_25139820864_o

 

I opened an Instagram account. It was so funny because a great person I follow wrote about her leaving Instagram. LOl! Of course you already know her but if there is a minimal possibility that not then you can enjoy her Instagram journey here.

gate-of-light-in-the-border-of-chaos-stormclouds-clouds-gate-light-architecture-preinca-bolivia-fuji-fujifilm_xe1-fujinon35mmf14-fujifilm_xseries_25675257301_o

Said that I think I don’t have the risks to fall in the dark corner she mentions. I opened my Instagram as a way to share with my ex (while in relationship) and we had a funny time together. Instagram even has a place to chat xP Amanda wished me joy in my new “filtered” life. I don’t see wrong in it, after all cameras are not designed to photograph feelings so Instagram get me close to them: I am not used by it, I use it.

bluesky-clouds-hill-ichu-landscape-fujifilm_xe1-fujinon35mmf14-fujifilm_xseries_25744280656_o

 

If you have seen my blog previously you have seen these photographs in a certain way, but at the same time this is the first time you are seeing them because I am using the Instagram filters to get closer to what I feel and see : )

teamo-sooiiniicool-eres-la-nica-luz-que-necesito---bulb-bokeh-afternoon-sky-fujifilm_xe1-fujinon35mmf14-fujifilm_xseries_25649358422_o

 

I love the square composition, it makes in a certain way things bigger, more classic perhaps.

te-encontr-nekita--p-sooiiniicool--cat-bricks-old-textures-walls-fujifilm_xe1-fujinon35mmf14-fujifilm_xseries_25139866814_o

 

Instagram is a faster way to see photographs and follow people and interests. WordPress is something you need usually two or three minutes. More when the publication is longer. But Instagram is quite direct and quickly to appreciate.

two-hills-two-clouds-landscape-clouds-ichu-hills-fujifilm_xe1-fujinon35mmf14-fujfilm_xseries_25770317925_o

 

The photographs even usually has not a title. So it’s up to you to give to them a personal meaning.

deep-purple-twilight-countryside-silhouette-landscape-fujifilm_xe1-fujinon35mmf14-fujifilm_xseries_25744250426_o

 

The filters to me are a starting point, not every image has a filter applied and the ones that yes actually I try to use them with the goal to get a natural rendering.

rain-over-me-rain-streetphotography-church-colonialarchitecture-fujifilm_xe1-fujifilm_xseries-fujinon35mmf14_25770303015_o

compression-otra-maana-spamendote-bb-x-te-amo-hago-de-todo-por-ti-amor-besos-para-ti-sooiiniicool--tower-old-architecture-morning-oldarchitecture-light-framed-fujinon35mmf14-fujifilm_xseries-fujifilm_xe1_25143701663_o

tengo-sed-de-ti-sooiiniicool--teamo-bb-3-an-cuando-no-ests-yo-estoy-por-ti-siempre-leaves-water-twilight-colors-fujifilm_xe1-fujinon35mmf14-fujifilm_xseries-sadness_25744233126_o

 

 

buenos-das-amor-que-tu-da-sea-muy-bonito-sooiiniicool--te-amo-sunrise-morning-sky-fujifilm-fujifilm_xseries-fujifilm_xe1-waitingforyou_25675195061_o

moon-love-sky-luna-twilight-sooiiniicool-eres-la-luna-que-completa-el-cielo-de-mi-vida-sin-ti-no-tiene-razn-y-slo-existe-para-que-le-des-tu-belleza--w-_25143675903_o

no-te-vayas-waiting-in-the-highway-in-bolivia-person-highway-highlands-truck-road-fujifilm_xe1-fujinon35mmf14-fujifilm_xseries_25745100456_o

 

 

 

And that’s all. To me Instagram is quite funny. In a way to rediscover my photographs, it’s something fast but at the same time those squares seems to be calmer…

MY-LOR~1

Passenger: recommendations to photograph in the highway

lonely vertical

Lonely vertical

I travel by bus; planes are expensive and I’m not in a hurry. I know the highlands, the valleys, deserts, the coast, and a bit of the jungle. I like to take snapshots of the landscape and I’ve a method that could be useful to you.

Ready to go
caution a

Caution

In first place you need to see. To observe requires you enjoying the view from the window. Otherwise is the camera the one travelling and not you. Of course this suggestion is valid if you are like me, a guy that enjoys to travel, if you are a photographer then you can skip them. This is because there are two kind of persons, the ones that take photographs of the travels they enjoy and the other a person that travels to get photographs in a portfolio to show/sell. Rarely you can be both at the same time.

You can use any camera, just try to turn off any flash in your camera so you are not going to take photos of its reflection against the window. The problems you are going to find and their solutions are the following:

  • Reflections in the window: Reduce them with a polarizer filter
rocky castle

Rocky castle

If you see the photograph in the blue sky and the top of the rock you can see reflections of the opposite windows of the bus. They could have been even worse but the polarizer helped to reduce to the maximum any reflection.

little cloud

Little cloud

In this photograph instead the polarizer got rid of any reflection.

  • Color casts from the window: use software to correct it
Towers hill

Towers Hill

The colors across the windows are going to be a bit twisted and sometimes funny. To correct them you can use editing software with white balance correction, there are both free and paid programs. Usually you can pick an object known to be white (a painted wall, a sign, a cloud) and it automatically correct it. Nevertheless still the colors can end different because windows aren’t made to be optical elements but protection and source of light. A raw file is easier to correct than the common jpeg file.

One thing you can do is accept that fact and take advantage of the differences in colors.

  • Poles and obstacles: take quickly a second photograph
a scream in the sky

A scream in the sky

When you are traveling the car can be on the road at high speeds. So there is no way to carefully design a composition. Some like to use bracketing, I don’t like to do that, I prefer to preview in my mind how is going to change the perspective, wait until it and shot like a Jabusame (a Japanese archer on a running horse) but it’s possible that the mind reacts by instinct when there is something in the landscape. I take a photograph to discover a pole or a sign, so quickly I shot it again.

  • Blown highlights: use a graduated filter
summoning clouds

Summoning clouds

You can take a photograph and suddenly you see that this happened: the land is according to your eyes but the sky is almost white and without detail. In these cases a graduated filter is mandatory, of course you can recover in software (specially with the last cameras) but the less time you live in front of a computer the better.

  • Discover stories: observe the highway
Waiting for the driver

Waiting with loyalty

Along the highway there are evidences of stories. The most of them have not an obvious explanation because people in the countryside is always different. What happened to that car? Is the dog a watcher or is just resting? the scars of sun and rain in the textiles give a sense of time too. A story for a detective.

  • Dirty windows give flares: take advantage of them!
Beyond the ground a luminous place

Beyond the ground a luminous place

I love flares! If you don’t like them then a lens hood could help you. In my case I like how the dirty windows (they’re always dirty) transform the light and get a diffuse and low contrast image.

  • Difficulty in taking photographs at twilight and night: get the most of those hours
glazing eye

Glazing eye

It doesn’t matter if you have a cell phone or a giant camera: in broad day they can get nice pictures. The problem is with low light, the most basic the camera the blinder it is to low light scenaries. In those circunstances a tripod and a long exposure would be the option but in a car in movement that is just impossible. In this moment technology matters and the best camera is going to give you more useable photographs. To this first photograph I used a Fujifilm X-E1 camera and a fast 1.4 fujinon lens.

If you can get a camera with a big sensor then the night is going to be open to you. Quality films have usually low sensivity to light so they aren’t suitable for these dark hours.

Somebody else in the highway

Somebody else in the highway

In this photograph I used my Sony R1, it has a big sensor but it’s quite old so it’s a bit blind to the night. So I used a long exposure to get the lights of the passing cars. I knew I couldn’t get a sharp photograph but I could get photographs with movement.

Four neighborrs

Four neighbors

End of the travel
Follow the line

Follow the line

So the travel ends, usually when the night is closer. Time to rest and be ready for the next trip…

last bus to the city

Last bus to the city

The thirsty pastures waiting for the time of rains

The thirsty pastures waiting for the time of rains

Usually I hear music while working, but sometimes I get tired so I turn on the TV to have background noise. Days ago I was hearing a movie (eyes in the work) and after it there was a Colombian series of erotic stories, as I was concentrated in my drawings I let it be. The story was about an actress that one day decides to accept an offer to pose naked for a magazine. Then her family and her boyfriend decide to ban her from their lives; she suffers and nobody wants to hire her because the immorality to pose in the magazine. In the end she writes a book of four thousand pages to explain to the country that she feels regret for have posed. Then the boyfriend and family goes to say her that they forgive her…

It was so funny. I don’t know what is the guilt or sin in the body, and besides I think the most horrible in that story is the family that betrays their own blood, the boyfriend whose “image” is far more important than the love and support. The story is funny because Colombia has a great market of magazines with models, even some of their magazines are here in Peru and that’s great. In the end I couldn’t stop to laugh because the hostess of the program was a lady with a vast cleavage showing generous breasts…

But sadly there is something of reality in that program. I know some friends, male, in the cities that are more closer to the European traditions of middle ages, that consider a woman they want to marry a prostitute if she is not virgin, but they feel the obligation to get laid with several ladies (even when they are already married with the virgin) that they consider not suitable for a relationship because to them are just ladies to “use.” And the girls in those cities tend to choose those boys because they have the image of strength they are looking for, that’s one of the reasons I got disappointment about girls in those places and I prefer to be alone, to me a lady like that, from my native point of view is a weak person that has no dreams to fight for. It’s the way of their society in general of Latinos, in the case of natives those are quite uncomfortable traditions, we have an institution: the servinacuy, it’s a legal institution where a couple lives together, can have children and everything, but it’s considered a trial time before the marriage, because there is nothing more terrible than a man or woman get stuck in a life not meant to be. Sadly with the advance of westerners traditions some of them replace our healthy traditions, it’s true that some of those traditions have to disappear in this modern world, but the westerner world in Peru is one from the middle ages.

our bodies intertwined

our bodies intertwined

I try to photograph based on my emotions. I try to communicate them with my knowledge as an architect from what I know about proportion, shape, scale, texture and symbol.

This photograph is the sea, it was already night and I had just my old tablet with its 3.2 megapixels but I didn’t care, I just wanted to don’t forget the soft sway of sea waves against the beach… the movement. I altered the few colors to express more and more of what I felt. Of course it could be not your cup of tea and that’s fine, if the world had the same preferences then we should just replace ourselves for a society of robots.

To be able to take this photograph as I wanted I needed the lessons learned across thousands and thousands of photographs.

About Art

I was thinking about it because I saw the work of a photographer with his medium format camera (the cheapest with a single lens can cost 9000 dollars, in contrast my humble camera manufactured in 2005 cost me 250 dollars) but there were mistakes between his goals in his mind (paintings) and the photographs he got; the compositions and colors he chose were the kind of errors I made too when I started to take photographs and edit them. I suggested him to use the help of a cell phone to sketch his photographs but he took the suggestion in a very badly way, lol. I didn’t say more, in any case I tried to search in my past if I had the same attitude, if you have a critic to my photographs and they can help me to be a better person (because my goal are emotions expressed in photographs, I’m not interested in being a photographer in the sense to be hired or sell photographs) then I will glad to read with patience. I’m happy with my only camera, I tried one of those sexy Fujifilm with better image quality but it was less funny, I think if I would lose my camera I’d like to buy a Samsung NX500,a Sony A7S II or a Sigma Merrill but in the end I would buy again my compact Sony R1, I think I don’t need equipment more expensive than a whole house to see the world (although money is needed to see the world hehe)

So I didn’t reply the gentleman, but I remembered the reality in my country. When Spaniards came they were tied to their religion and one terrible thing is that fantasy was banned, so instead of theater there was religious plays; instead of painting of what the soul asks only religious themes were allowed, and so on in every art. Until these modern times they hardly produce fantasy but mostly they copy what is fashion in Europe or USA, and if an artist produce something authentic it’s despised as something lack of value except when that artist get recognition in UE or USA. Instead in my culture the fantasy is important so our cinema is about creatures or fantastic ideas. And if you have seen my photographs I rarely see them as a document of the reality but more as a record of what I see with the eyes of my imagination, so in the titles I choose I hope you can see that I don’t see a stone or a chair, but a king or the wings of a giant. Of course that doesn’t mean I consider my culture superior, just different.

The case is that I don’t like to be considered an artist because in the reality of my country, where my civilization is a minority, art is the success in imitate what the artist in your country, dear visitor, is really producing from the mind. I don’t need recognition, I only know that I just simply do what I do, just because something inside burns me to do it.

Fill flash

Ruins after the night

Fill flash at 1/2000 of second

Fill flash is a technique to use the flash in your camera in broad daylight to illuminate the shadows of objects closer to the camera. Because, you know, photography is about the light. It’s quite useful in the beach and other places where the sun is intense and the camera register almost black shadows (never forget: the camera cannot see what your eyes see) For example in the photograph above the shadows of the midday hide the textures and colors of the rocks, the fill flash allowed me to laugh about the problem ;-) you can see the rocks in the distance, how the shadows are just a black void.

But… Is it not easier to use software?

Nop, here an example. The following photograph was shot in midday without fill flash:

No processed

Shot without fill flash, the wall in under the shadow

The photograph has no processing and the colors aren’t the ones of the reality because I programmed my camera to have the less contrast and saturation possible to process in home (but that is post for another day). Let’s try to correct the shadows in software with this file and the best we get is this:

Processed

The same photograph but modified in software

Shadows tend to be blue so I warmed the image and illuminated the sadows, incremented the saturation the closer to the natural tones and tried to give it more life. Better but know let’s see the same scene with fill flash:

Behind the wall

Processed photograph

Can you notice the change? It has more life, the colors are shining, there is more happiness and it’s closer to what our minds see, because the brain compensate when there are strong shadows. As you can see the flash effect is sublte because it hasn’t erase the shadows but just illuminate them enough to show the colors and details.

To say it in a few words I use this technic to give life to the photographs. I use flash at day and never at night. See the apple and the marble:

alone in the Andean plateau

 

I love apples :P Fill flash is great for portraits because it gives light to the eyes… the same with this apple. Let’s see what happens with a bit of flash:

red sun in marble cliff

The flash illuminates marble and apple in a natural way

With software (HDR for example) it couldn’t end in a natural way.

Speaking of eyes, I have not one from somebody else that gave me an authorization so I’m using a selfie. See, the flash gives a spark to my eyes, it helps a lot to give the impression of life, it’s in the beach and also helps to reduce the shadows:

fill flash example

See the eyes *_*

But there is a catch: you cannot use a camera with interchangeable lenses… they have a nature that make them slow with flashes. The first photograph was shot at 1/2000 of second, the most of cameras with interchangeable lenses just can get until 1/250 of second which is far from the needed speeds at midday or sunny day, I think they need special external flashes to accomplish high speeds. If you have a compact camera as I do you are not going to have problem using the flash in any moment of the day.

These are some more photographs with fill flash:

A river of white light

The boat was under the shadow… although the flash was quite strong with the foreground

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

A flower in the Titicaca, otherwhise I could got a black flower or a white sky

flash

I avoided a silhouette, The flash illuminated the foreground

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

here the flash perhaps is a bit hars, you can use a diffuser

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I used the flash to illuminate and at the same time give sparks to the metalic surface

Survivor trcrawling to  the water

Without the flash the camera would just got a black mess…

And that’s all, I hope it helps you.

Tower in the dark

Tower in the dark

I think there are immortal cities, years giving advances to the humanity, legends of heroic origins and their triumphs over the defeats fill them with a spirit beyond the bricks and stones. So in every city there is a bit of Athens surviving in the shape of some columns; a piece of Rome in the discourse of a lawyer; echoes of London in the clothes that still we use after the Victorian age; a New York melody when every building aspires to go the farther into the sky; in Peru that city is Qosqo (Cusco/Cuzco) the center of every road and every thought, it’s not the oldest but it’s the most meaningful. Of course Rome, Qosqo, Athens, those cities aren’t what physically they were but at the same time they are still alive because the spirit in them couldn’t die, finding its way through other cities.

Paris is one of those cities, I have never been there, but at the same time I have been there across the eyes and words of the ones that got caught by their spirit in already several centuries. And  as I know it the sad attacks of yesterday aren’t nothing more that the hate of people with sickness in their souls against a universal symbol of freedom and humanity; they are condemned to failure because Paris is immortal and already there is a bit of Paris in every place on the world where there are desires of justice.