Memories of Primal Earth

Memories of Primal Earth

At least! Tomorrow I’m on my way to Ilo city, the place in the photo is in the heart of the city, Can you believe that a city has a sea in his center? So I’m traveling after an attack coordinated of virus to my system (a flu) and to my laptop (informatic) for work… meh!

I hope not more than two days. As usual I’ll schedule posts in advance ;-)

Good morning, and in case I don’t see ya, good afternoon, good evening, and good night!” ;-)

Stellar jewels – And a review about photographic sites

Stellar jewels

There was a marvelous view of the coast at sunrise in Ilo city, I hadn’t my camera so I grabbed my old cell phone with two megapixels, I edited the picture in the app for tablets Snapseed and got the quality of the soft light reaching the shores while they were touched by the music of Pacific Ocean waves.

I can’t avoid to think that it’s a marvel to have tools in our pockets that can help us to document a feeling or save a memory. The rest is vanity.

***

Photographic sites I see for information

I had an Olympus camera, but I was reached the limit of its capabilities so I investigated which camera could satisfy me without mean a hole in my skinny pocket. After reviewing several models I ended knowing several review sites. Perhaps you already know them, and if not they could be useful for you. The most I see are:

He’s a smart man, he knows he’s driving a spectacle so knows how to get his audience interested. He uses to write in a clever way that people fall in his traps and thinks he is saying contradictory or false statements, meanwhile he laughs and have a great time seeing the buzz of the passionate crowd. As a US citizen he explains clear and directly.

From him I learned to use my equipment as tools, not ornaments; I learned everything I know about filters, tripods, cameras, accessories, terminology, etcetera. Actually I know a lot of English words related to photography but I unknown their equivalent in Spanish.

About his side as a photographer I like his naturalness to compose and the bright colors, but to say the truth I’m more attracted to his opinions.

He is a professional photographer. From him I learned to be careful with my equipment to extract the most of them; the importance to have a language in our images, doesn’t matter if you’re shooting a cell phone or medium format; and his most important lesson to me is to choose always a title for my pictures, sometimes I got good titles, sometimes not.

About his side as a photographer actually he is the perfect reason I don’t want to be ever a photographer, so my link to my pictures is called “my pictures” and not “portfolio” for that motive. It’s not that his photographs have an imperfection, far from that, actually they are perfect, doesn’t matter if he uses his iPhone or his Pentax 645Z. But when I see his photographs I feel that he’s not interested in the subject or object portrayed beyond a medium to get a photograph to show. In my case a camera just matters to save memories and to express feelings of the moment. so: No, I don’t want to be a professional photographer.

His passion for photography don’t translates in a photography with soul.

  • Trey Ratcliff from http://www.stuckincustoms.com/

He is an adventurer. He travels the world and get amazing views. From him I learned to don’t be afraid of software as a tool to get the photograph in the way I see with my eyes and not in the way the camera, an object, see it. He is amazing because he didn’t study photography so in a certain way he’s a Texan that has built his name with a very personal way to be not related to other photographers in the past. If you search online for “HDR” you’re going to find him for sure.

As a photographer I like very much his photographs of landscapes, but I’m not much attracted when his HDR technique is overdone (what was more in the past and sometimes in urban landscapes) because I feel like I’m having an overdose of candy. But the man is cool.

The legendary photographer. Actually is perhaps the only professional photographer I really, but really, I’m fan. From him I learned to be humble and natural, the important is what you see, not what your camera see.

Besides I purchased my Sony R1 because I saw a TV spot in youtube with him grabbing the camera in India. Of course I know that he uses a Nikon but to me was enough to see what a master like him could make with a camera accessible to me.

***

And that’s all. To take the photograph I had in my mind from Ken Rockwell the confidence to use my cell phone as the important tool it is; from Ming Thein a careful way to shoot with a composition; from Trey Ratcliff the liberty to edit the photograph until it matched what my eyes saw; and from Steve McCurry to capture a meaningful moment for me.

Stone Circle of Dragons

Advancing to the sea before the long night

Advancing to the sea before the long night

old dragons breath ancient fire

their black skin blends with twilight silhouette

an ancient sea relieves hurt hot wings

.

They would love to fly, to raise! The sky is so far…

once lords they now wait red moonlight

a silent incantation of hope to break the spell

confining them to legends and myths

.

Drums of war are their hearts, lava for the last fight.

The worst wound a shame that burns:

be caged in rocks whom before were a proud kin

precisely them, a race of kings!

.

The caste of the Stone Circle of Dragons awaits

advancing before the long night…

to a promised redemption made of red moonlight

silently, slowly… into the old sea

In the heart of the city a wild sea

In the heart of the city a wild sea

I presented before a similar photograph, but this is actually a photograph stitched from two horizontal photographs, I took one for the sea and another for the sky, usually it’s recommended to take vertical photographs to stitch but the moving nature of the waves could have ended in an imperfect stitch.

Malecón Costero – Wild nature in the heart of Ilo city

Millions of years ago a warmer sea and a peaceful land

millions of years ago a warmer sea and a peaceful land

Malecón Costero is a place in the shores of Pacific Ocean in Ilo city, a southern city in the Peruvian coast. Actually this wild place is in the heart of the city and it’s an urban miracle. Usually in Peru every beautiful place is ruined by mayors with beasts of concrete destroying its natural beauty. Ilo’s economy relies in artisanal fishing and the refinery of a billionaire copper mine (Peru is one of the world’s first exporters of minerals, what says that we’re also dumb because after sell the resources we buy them again in the shape of electronic devices). The mine, Southern Peru, financed an urban project and one of my masters at university designed it. Thanks to him, Arch. Edgardo Ramírez Chirinos (RIP), the heart of the city is still a place quite beautiful and at the same time a testament that we can build without destroying.

This happened one month ago in the last days of summer.

Sunset
Victory of the Sun

victory of the sun

I was there barely before the twilight. I used a reverse graduated filter to get the colors of sunset but at the same time get the ground illuminated as seen by my eyes.

Ilo's Magic Sun

Ilo’s magic sun

Gulliver ship catched by Lilliputian ones

Gulliver ship caught by Lilliputian ones

But it happened so fast. The sunset was more like a sun falling. So there was just a soft light and a last ship.

Searching a safe port

in search of a safe port

A primal world
The noise of waves crashing with sharp rocks in a primitive world

the noise of waves crashing with sharp rocks in a primitive world

Did you know that the ocean was much warmer millions of years ago? I had that impression, that the sea was hot like a soup, and the rocks of the shores seemed like expecting in any time the rise of walking primitive fishes. Even more it looks like I imagine our planet billions of years ago, life dancing in waves and in every song its movements becoming more and more complex.

Explorers of the sea

explorers of the sea

Six heads awaiting the return of their gods

six heads awaiting the return of their gods

Conquest

conquest

Conquest

Old rocks between the city and the old sea
giants closing their eyes

giants closing their eyes

In other city the mayor had exploded the rocks and put another statue of one of our military heroes, harming the memory of those heroes with that barbarian act. I think that’s a tradition of the old Spaniards that came and used the rivers as sewers and built giving the back of the houses to lakes and the ocean. Of course they are not related to the modern Spaniards that built marvels in the distant Spain in this age. Fortunately the architect followed our native traditions to build harmonizing with the nature, without destroying it but using it as a friend. What you see in these pictures is a kind of main plaza but with traditional pre-hispanic concepts.

Stone dragos dreaming wooden ships

Stone dragons dreaming wooden ships

I couldn’t avoid to think in Norwegian fjords with Vikings preparing to dominate the sea. Of course I know the reality is quite different, my evocation comes from child fantasies.

A star above the stone circle of edlers

a star above the stone circle of elders

A watcher, employed by the city hall, came in his bicycle and warned me that the place was dangerous at night because the junkies and they could steal my camera. I thanked him and while he was explaining me the danger I stole his wallet, lol. That last is a joke of course. I packed my camera and went to take a bus to Tacna city.

Fortress awaiting

fortress awaiting

When the night came I already was travelling to another place.

Origin of a myth

origin of a myth

Something Spaniards couldn’t understand clearly was the theme about beings of power (and in justice we didn’t understand neither their religion with their God and saints)

In this side of South America where the Incan Empire grew is common that every human group had a sacred hill or rock or lake to protect, similar to a parent, not a god, because it was believed that that being was some kind of ancestor, and that’s true in cities with millions and millions of people like Lima city or little communities at 4000 m. of altitude with one hundred people. But these lords or ladies weren’t unconnected to the world: they could “speak”. In the myths is interesting to know that the people who did extraordinary prowess could end shaping a mystery rock in the sacred hills, coming back to an origin.

So in the end in these places there is no difference between lords of power and humans, simply exist bonds of kinship.

Walking the yellow fields of Santa Lucía and meeting a Red God

Taking a bath

crystalline

A week ago I wrote you about Lagunillas lagoon. I just was there an hour and decided to walk following the highway in route to Santa Lucía city, this is in Lampa Province, Puno Region, in the highlands of the Peruvian Southeast at 4025 metres above sea level (13 205 feet) Usually foreigners, in special from Europe, suffer the high altitude, I born there so my case is the opposite, I suffer the heat and dense humidity of the coast XP. This is what I found:

Yellow fields and waterfalls with ice

Last End

last end

If you want to know what feels to be the last woman or man on Earth walk the highway in the highlands.

alphabet of circles

alphabet of circles

The lagoon was already an old memory.

Bonded to the earth

bonded to the earth

Sweet and tough home

sweet and tough home

Stones and ice

stones and ice

In the photograph above you can see the summer in the highlands, it’s not hot, it’s cold, just not so much as in July when is winter. Even more you can see an ice block in the lower left of the waterfall upon a rock.

Take a seat and see

sit

Hidden door to a hidden kingdom

hidden door to a hidden realm

After four hours walking I confess I felt tired. So much that I couldn’t notice the person above the hill seeing me. Can you see him/her? Here is a crop:

I can see you

I can seee youu

But I was far from my goal so I keep moving my legs.

The Forgotten Red God in the Green Pastures

shadow in green frame

shadow in green frame

Then the landscape changed and I was in a wilder world of green pastures where live the wild vicuñas, pumas and tarucas (north Andean deer) I just could see a taruca but it ran so fast behind a hill so I couldn’t shot him with my camera (although my stomach asked me to change from hungry walker/photographer to a happy hunter)

it's cold come here

it’s cold, come here

Cloud in love of rocks

a cloud about to tickle the hill

Usually in Peru the rocks with peculiar shapes on hills are venerated and cared by communities since thousand of years. Fortunately this rock is virgin so there weren’t persons who could see me with distrust (they don’t want to understand that I visit places just because those places inspire me the desire to go) It was the end of the afternoon so I went quickly before the night when I should to walk next to the highway.

fracture

fracture

soft sun in the meadow of long shadows

soft sun in the meadow of long shadows

cloud landing in solitary meadows

cloud landing in solitary meadows

Hidden mushroom

hideaout for a mushroom

blood requiem

blood requiem

Grinders

grinders

If I remember well I think that presence of aluminum give that reddish tone to the rocks.

Son of Atlas

son of Atlas

Red Soldier in eternal watch

red soldier in eternal watch

citadel of mythic ages

citadel of mythic ages

Gelid blue and Silent red

gelid blue and silent red

lines of light

lines of light

And well, this is enough for today. Beyond these rocks I had to continue the highway, but I’ll post that final part in the next week if your patience is still with me ;-)

Kiss (volcanic)

kiss (volcanic)

Last thoughts of a moribund

last thoughts of a moribund

 

I shot this landscape yesterday. I was actually in the ground with numb legs and arms and my head lying on a rock, a bit cold despite the summer at nearly 4000 meters or 13 000 feet of altitude. I was feeling a certain sadness because those are my lands and I’ve a great resistance, we evolved to live here; and I was there, tired and at uncertain distance to Santa Lucía city.

So I felt great relief today when I verified in google maps that actually I walked approximately 24 kilometers or 15 miles, and a part of them climbing hills in irregular ground. After that photo my members felt better and I walked some hours more until I could go in a public transport near the city. Also I get my goal to use besides digital a roll of film Portra 160 and walk the landscapes I love so much.

When kid I used to thought that dying in a place like the photograph would be nice, in silence, lucid, awake, until the stars could say you good bye and your body would be untouched by nothing, because in our culture the dead aren’t finished but just are living another life, and because that the body should be safe, but I walked again, and again, and again.