A Cover for Kirkuk Center for Torture Victims
In September 2012 I had the privilege to meet in person some of the workers and directors behind the Kirkuk Center for Torture Victims. Kirkuk-center.org, as they state on their website, “is a human rights organization assisting traumatized victims of torture, persecution and violence in Iraq. We believe in a democratic society where the dignity of the human person is respected, where adults and children enjoy the right to life and liberty, and where citizens are free from torture and terror.”
At our initial meeting, we discussed the development of the “cover” for their upcoming annual report. In 2011 they had paid for a stock image that ...
18 de abril de 2013
Product shooting – Los Búhos
One of the surprises I found this time when I returned to Chile was that one of my dear friends is now crafting and brewing beer. He’s started his own company, established a lab, and has just begun the production of a beer called “Los Búhos” (which means The Owls in Spanish). It’s exquisite, to say the least. More than just a beer with great flavour, this beer has a lot of dedication, passion and craft behind it. I think that was the main reason why I was inspired to create this shoot. My friend has invested a lot of time in developing a method through studying the old traditions of crafting and brewing beer, and not relying on more “modern” ...
09 de abril de 2013
A few days ago, I finally made the time to photograph my best friend and wife, Belen Leon, at 9 months pregnant! Yes, I really cut it close to the time that our fourth son is due. This will probably be the last child we add to our family by birth, so we wanted to mark the occasion with a special shoot. Our intention was to photograph Belen as naturally as possible, and to be faithful to who she is she as a woman, and in that way to avoid some of the over-done looks that you can find easily on the internet.
We scouted the venue just a few minutes before the shoot. Improvisation was key. And the location and time of the day turned out to be ...
09 de abril de 2013
My Work for SALT International
Last week I had one of those assignments that are a blast from the beginning until the very last shot. It started with a 3-hour drive through one of my favorites landscapes to go to the city of Erbil (known as Hawler in the local language), the capital of Kurdistan. Were on the road at 3am and as we drove, waited for the sun to rise and surprise us again with the beautiful early morning light on the slopes that cover Kurdistan (next time we'll photograph more of that too).
I arranged an early start due to the high temperatures that we have in summer in Iraq, so at 7am Erin Wilson and I met up with some of the Agrisoya members in Erbil (Er ...
16 de julio de 2012
It's not that I don’t have fond memories to recall. But I have a haunting memory that I need to get out of me. I’ve been thinking about my childhood; I’ve been trying to reconcile with my past, a past that I try to put together a piece at a time for my children to understand. But my mind returns again and again to these haunting thoughts.
Even now, after so many years since I left the narrow-shaped country of Chile that I call home, I am still reminded of my past. Although, I’ve been on the other side of the world for nine years, it seems that people, situations and especially places scheme to get these memories off my chest. So here I a ...
30 de abril de 2012
The Operating Room
While I was going through the images I have shot during the last 2 years, I found a peculiar set of images that drew my attention. I don't know why I didn't take notice before, but I've decided to publish them under one of the portfolios that I'm currently building up, based on portraiture. I think that this set of photographs is very interesting in the sense that I'm sharing a very intimate and important moment with each person pictured here. These are the kind of profoundly personal moments when you don't want to be interrupted, and you don't want to be distracted, but for some reason that eludes me today, we all agreed to make it happen.
27 de marzo de 2012
Sulaymaniyah International Theatre Festival
Last week, we had the opportunity to enjoy an international theatre festival, where groups from different European countries performed in locations throughout the city of Sulaymaniyah. It was a first for Iraq.
One of the festival sponsors hired me to cover some of the performances, which was a new challenge for me. I haven’t done much work with events, and my only previous experience photographing events was my sister’s wedding (2009) and a Preemptive Love campaign (2010).
The brief from my clients was: to capture as much of the performances as I could during the assigned hours, and to produce pictures to be used for archiving purposes ...
12 de marzo de 2012
Guest Blogging – “Haunted Memories”
Today I'm guest blogging at a friend's Blog. The special thing about this post is that it isn't just another Blog post for me. This is a very intimate, deep and difficult story of my childhood that I had to put into words and photographs. I'm really thankful for this challenge, thanks to Jose Martinez. This is a great idea. The whole project made me a better and a more sensitive artist.
NOTE: The Blog where I posted this work has been deleted for unknown reasons. I will publish this article on my Blog again.
Here are some of the images I used for this self-assignment. I will be probably blogging about these images as most of them were t ...
17 de enero de 2012
Assignment: The Other Iraq (And the other Me)
A couple months ago, I contacted one of the main newspapers in Chile, called La Tercera. It publishes a Sunday magazine that has a very unique approach to storytelling. This magazine, El Semanal, is not based on documentaries, reports, analysis or interviews, which is the norm for a publication like that in Chile. Instead, El Semanal features people telling their own stories, speaking in first person, talking about what they have experienced or what they have witnessed around certain issues, places and life in general.
From the very beginning I really liked their editorial work and approach to storytelling, because it identifies with the way ...
27 de octubre de 2011
Photographing Women in a Muslim country
A couple of weeks ago, one of my good friends, Canadian photographer Erin Wilson, suggested I write about this topic after revising my 2010 portfolio. This was the second time that another photographer mentioned this to me. I guess in all these years I have found my own way, as male photographer, to photograph women in Iraq.
I must say though that after almost eight years in Iraq, photographing local islamic women still represents a big challenge for me and I always need to be cautious and thoughtful in the way I approach women here. This post is not a manual or recipe to be followed exactly. The way I see it, this post shares the insights b ...
10 de octubre de 2011