One good reason to travel far and wide is to distance yourself from whatever routine or culture you’ve alligned to and experience life anew.
A trip to Cuba will undoubtedly provide this.
During a stay in the instantly charming town of Trinidad – a crumbling, kaleidoscopic old-world town straight out of a Western (cowboys and all) – I noticed that one of the boys continually kicking around a football on my street had a great eye for a frame, as evidenced by his phone photography. I was about to go for a solo sunset walk when the boys hollered me over (“Amigo!”) to see what pics I’d taken so far that day. After doing so, I urged the budding young photographer, Michel, to take my camera for a stroll and see what he could come up with.
I’d taken plenty of images up to that point so was curious to see what he could capture – what he would focus on, how he’d frame his images and how any potential subjects would react to shutter gaze. We brought his friends along for the short adventure round the hood.
Along with some intriguing street photography showing the interaction between a Cuban boy and his everyday environment, Michel created an incredible portrait of a frail but intense-looking man named Edilio, who was an “Amigo de Che” and still had military badges on his cap to prove it. I don’t believe Edilio would’ve reacted the same way to a thousand outsiders in the way he reacted to young Michel’s lens, partly because of their respective ages but also because they knew each other. The shot was as impulsively captured (first time) as it was posed (fierce, Edilio, fierce!)
If you think the net is oversaturated (it is) with the world’s most in vogue travel photography spots (Cuba) – here’s a fresh perspective.
What follows is Michel’s photowalk.