Without no doubt my favorite place to shoot portraits is Oaxaca, Mexico. There are many opportunities to shot, especially I like to go to the markets; Etla Market, Ocotlan Market or the Benito Juarez market in Oaxaca City.
Here some shots from a trip that I did in 2019, all were shoot with a Nikon D7100 50mm lent.
Let me know whcih one is your favorite in the comments section and go to this link if you want a printed copied:
Recently I got a Ricoh GR III camera, if you google it you will see it is the #1 recommendation for street photographers, and the main reason is that it has a great sensor, so it delivers great image quality and is very small compared with any other camera in the market that can deliver this image quality.
I really like it as you can put it in your pocket, and is always ready to capture candid moments. The price is about 900usd, but if you do not have that amount I would recommend to buy the previous verison (II) as you can get it with about 400usd and is also a super tool.
Here some images that I took recently while in the quarenteen in my home, just playing with good light and the smal Ricoh GRIII
You can get a print of one of these images in the following page:
This post is dedicate to my two canine friends: Ruperta and Pancho
And here some tips on how you can improve your shoots:
Be patient. Dogs and animals in general are very curious and trend to move very fast, so its not so easy to shoot as when you are shooting landscapes or objects without movement.
Use fast shutter speed. By setting your camera in Manual mode or Speed priority you will control the speed. Try to shoot in very fast speed this will allow you to capture the pet in movement focusing just in the action.
Use continuous shoot mode. Shoot many images per second, and the select the best, you can always delete all others.
Use tricks or food to get the dog attention. Very useful to accommodate the dog to the place where the best background is…
Shoot in a low aperture mode. This will allow you to focus in the pet and make the background blur.
Select the best time of the day / Light is key in good photos. Try to shoot in the sunset or sunrise. This will give you some great color tones to your photos.
Edit some photos in black and white. Edit trying to increase the blacks and the contrast, you can achieve very dramatic pictures.
Now you can buy some of my photos in the following link, if you can’t find the one that you like please let me know in the comments section or in my instagram (torobravophotography) and I will upload it, here the link;
Here some examples of the photos that are available now, if you would like to get a different one please comment directly in my Instagram account or here in the comments section and I will make the photo available for sale.
Here my instagram accound where you can find mor pictures, just tell me which one you like and I will incliude in the gallery so you can get it.
Sunrise and Sunsets are the best time of the day to shoot, the reason is that the light is soft and it help to create beutiful images with different colors.
Over the last year I have been shooting in the same place (the balcony of my apartment in Panama) in different hours and in different days.
The result combined with after editing in lightroom is a random set of pictures, everyone different form the other.
As you already know I am passionate about street photography and the fact that is “impossible” to shoot the same image, as everything is moving so fast and all the different variable (ISO, shutter speed, aperture, edition, camara, lense, post-edition) affects the result. This time I wanted to demonstrate this not in the streets but shooting the Panama landscape.
Here more images, all the images were taken either with my Nikon D7100, or with the Leica Q.
Tell me in the comments which one is your favorite, and what else would you like to see in this blog.
The Day of the Dead (“Dia de Muertos” is celebrated in Mexico between October 30th and November 2nd. On this day, we as Mexicans honor our deceased loved ones. For me is my favorite time of the year in my country and is the perfect time to make memorable photos, as people is a in celebrating mood, and if you go to the streets you can see all the rich culture, colors and traditions of Mexico. It’s a very colorful holiday and is like “party” in which we celebrate those who passed away.
Also cemeteries are decorated and people use to go there to be with their loved ones; people make altars in their homes, one day before the “The Day of Dead” putting food and/or things like cigarettes, alcohol or any other thing that the passed one enjoyed while living.
One of the many traditions in these days are the “Catrinas”; those are skeleton lady’s that wears lots of makeup to make her skin look whiter.
In this post I want to share some photos that I made with my wife, and also I want to thank my loved Gabriela for being the model and for always supporting me to do what I like the most (“being a photographer”).
When you think that you live in a place where there are not to many opportunities to shoot, you need to explore new places.
I recently discover a great place to shot in Panama, its just 20min driving form the city; it’s the closest beach from the city. Is for sure not a “beauty” beach like the ones in the caribbean ocean, but I discovered that is a great place to shot in the sunset¡
I have been shooting for the past 4 years street photography in black and white. Recently I discovered that shooting in color using -2 exposure composition and increasing the blacks while editing it’s great to create great street images in color. Below you will find some images that I took in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
If you want to learn more on how to do this, just send me a message to my instagram account and I can give you more tips.
I have been living 9yrs in Panama, during this time I have visit some places, but without doubt my favorite place is Kuna Yala or also known as San Blas. For me this place is like heaven or like arriving to the paradise….
I want to share some photos of this place so you can get a flavor of it and put it in your bucket list…
Kuna Yala is composed by aprox 300 virgin islands dominated by the native people named “Kunas”….
Five months ago I decided to upgrade my gear, I was tempted to choose a Nikon DSLR Full frame, as my previous was not full frame (Nikon D7100) but I decided that this was not the right choice as my primary shooting style is street photography and a DSLR is a very big for my purpose.
The other alternative was to buy a Mirrorless system, I like some of these cameras; especially because of its size, however the one that I have (Olympus OMD Mark II) is very good for street photography but its image quality is not as good as the photos that I can take with my Nikon D7100 camera. I decided that was not a good choice as I wanted to start printing my photos…
So what? I research and I found a camera that have both worlds, small enough for street photography with super image quality. My choice was the Leica Q…. You will ask why not to wait for the Leica Q2 as it was just announced… The price difference was 2X, while the Leica Q2 is at aprox, $5500usd, a used Leica Q in very good conditions was at $2,300usd. So to save that money I decided that the Leica Q was the perfect choice for me…
And guess what? The Leica Q has overpassed all my expectations.
Here some images that I have took with the Leica Q.
If you have any specific question just send me message in the comments or through my Instagram and I will let you know my experience…
About 4 years ago I discovered a way to express myself, a way to create a way to show others the way I see the streets. Here some ideas of Why I do photography, please write in the comments Why you do photography.
Diversity / Interact with new people.
I like to create portraits of random people that I consider unique, everytime that I walk in a new street I’m curious of the people, I think that 98% of the people is very common (non-unique), but the other 2% is people with something special that make them shine among the others, this is especially seen in old people. Here some examples:
Create – Photography as a way to do art
I like photography as it allows you to imagine, dream and create. FOr me create is a way to do something extraordinary out of the ordinary, here some examples:
Discover Beauty in the world.
Is a great way to pay attention to our environment, is the perfect way to see beauty out of mundane moments. FOr me photography has helped me to see beauty where before I didn’t see anything…
When you are into photography, you will be always thinking where is the next great spot to shot, and you will dream to be in places that you have never imagine (how about Tokio, London, Chicago, NY, Vietnam, etc), but also I have discovered that to make great shots you don’t need to travel so far, I’m currently living in Panama CIty, a place that before making photos I considered “small” with few options to shot, but this has forced me to see it in a different way and I discover to many places to shot…
Comment why do you like about photography, what is your purpose or inspiration to go out and shot
I am convinced that we can make great photos with simple tools, you don’t need to spend a lot of money to have a state of the art cameras that can cost you more than $5,000usd; instead I recommend you to use the camera that you have in hand. Try to make a lot of photos, the more you shot the best results you will get.
Today I want to share the work of one of my favorite photographers on Instagram that only shoot with Iphone, in her work you can find really good composition, stunning colors and a defined style.
You can find her as so.asa on Instagram, hero some of her photos that I like the most:
And now, here some photos that I have took with my Iphone, I normally shot with other cameras but as the Iphone is the only that I have always with me, sometimes I use it to create some images like this:
Tell me in the comments which are your favorites Instagram photographers, especially if they shoot with Iphone only…
Photowalks is the perfect exercise to go and shoot street photography; being with a group of people that is shooting randomly will make you feel more comfortable when approaching strangers, and you will be able to get closer to the subjects.
The other interesting thing is that you will meet new photographers and you will learn from them, try to interact with them, pay attention to what they do, what setting they use in their cameras, what they do to approach random people in the street, you will learn tons of new things.
Here some photos of a Photo walk in Panama City. Fist in black and white and then Color, tell me which ones you like more:
Street Photography is more than creating images, is about slow down and appreciate the things around us. I work in a multinational company where slow down is simple impossible; my day start with something urgent and end with something more urgent. What I like the most when I shoot in the streets is that I don’t have pressure, I take my time to interact with people, I disconnect from social media and last but not least I use mi imagination to create photos that would never be possible, sometimes is about seeing the right place and wait until something interesting happen. Here an example a kid playing Cricket in Panama? I only saw this one time in 8 years living in this country….
Shooting street photography is challenging, you have to be aware of the environment and form the people . In some locations you have to take more risk than in others, but what I have learn is that you need to tackle your fears, go and shoot, the worst thing that have happened to me is angry people that asked me to erase the photo. I learned that to take better photos you need to be closer to the subject and that exact moment is when you put yourself at risk.
The hardest part of shooting in the streets is to be brave, its that exact moment in which you know that you need to shoot but you feel that you are crossing a barrier that put you at risk. For example the next photo is form a native person in Panama (a Kuna). It is not easy to be in front and shot, its not easy to do that with a prime lent (no zoom) in this case a 17mm lent form my Olympus camera. But guess what? She don’t even saw me…
One thing that I always have in my mind, is that a shoot that is missed is a shot that will never return, this happens in street photography as your task is to find the right moment or as Henri Cartier Bresson explains is to find “the decisive moment”.
Hope you have enjoyed this, leave your comments with your own thoughts.
“Don’t shoot what it looks like. Shoot what it feels like.”.
Photograph your own backyard. Many people think that they need to go some place far away to make interesting photos. Do something about it, go and look inspiration across the street where you live. In my case I born in big city (Mexico City), there it was easier to find good spots to shoot, and there after I moved to live in Panama, which is very small compared to the place where I live, but I have found that just crossing the street there are many opportunities to take interesting photos.
Be sophisticated, don’t be easily satisfied. Ask yourself how good you want to be and based on that, learn form the best photographers. It will be always better to learn form Magnum Photographers than to spend time seeing single images on Instagram. Now a day with digital cameras you can spend a lot of time in a single scene and shoot many photos, don’t get satisfied with the first, is better to take many and choose the best.
Find your voice. Ask yourself what is your life about?, where are you coming from? What is your aspiration?, what makes you unique? Who is the persons that you want to become? And form there you can start building your own photography style.
Capture soul and emotion. In street photography you are always taking pictures of random human beings, try to make eye contact to know more about the person that is in front of you, get closer to see his/her emotions.
Get inspiration form outside. To make better photos its not only about learn photography technique, its also about learning form other arts, other disciplines; for example learn about painting, there you can learn how to do layers and then apply that to your own photos. When you find an interesting scene move around the angle of your camera, move yourself, until you get the right image.
Composition is about to make it right. All the elements needs to be build into what you are trying to communicate, find that exact moment in which everything is perfectly connected.
Keep it simple. This applies not only into photography, also apply to business, and daily life. I used to have a boss at Procter & Gamble that used to say that we need to do simply things that even his son of eight years can understand. In photography you need to focus in the subject, or in what got your attention and then eliminate all the distractive elements.
You won’t make good pictures every time. Photography is like playing the piano; you can try it or you can play it six hours per day. If you want to be a master you need to shoot everyday.
El baile que realizan los llamados “Diablicos Sucios”, representa solamente una de las nueve danzas del Corpus Christi. El nombre proviene del hecho que antiguamente su indumentaria era confeccionada con tela manta sucia, que luego era pintada con rayas negras y rojas, calcadas con achiote y carbón, pero que después de un tiempo los colores se corrían al mezclarse con el sudor dando el aspecto de estar sucios.
La Máscara es una parte principal de un Diablico y es sí misma representa la figura de animales o diablos
Tuve la oportunidad de ver a varios de estos diablicos durante la celebración del carnaval en la Ciudad de Panama.
Aquí algunas fotos tomadas con mi cámara Nikon D7100 y mi lente de 50mm.
One of the most expected days in Panama are the Carnivals which are celebrated in Marche every year.
Everything starts with the parity of the “Momo King”, and then you can find celebrations all over the country for four days. On of the uniques traditions in Panama are the “culecos” which is a tradition in which the people joint together to get water discharged from a water pipe, from there you will see people dancing reggaeton under the water.
Here some photos form, all were taken with my Nikon D7100 camera and 50mm lenses.
For more photos visit my Instagram Page: ToroBravoPhotography.
On December 2018, I went to one of my favorites cities in Mexico, its name is Oaxaca. Oaxaca is a city located in the south part of Mexico and is full of culture, traditions and extraordinary food. In this post I will talk about Mezcal and photography.
Let’s start with Mezcal; its a distilled alcoholic beverage made from any type of agave. Agaves or magueys are found in many parts of Mexico, but most mezcal is made in Oaxaca. A saying attributed to Oaxaca regarding the drink is: “Para todo mal, mezcal, y para todo bien, también.” (“For everything bad, mezcal, and for everything good as well.”) It is unclear whether distilled drinks were produced in Mexico before the Spanish Conquest. The Spaniards were introduced to native fermented drinks such as pulque, made from the maguey plant. Soon, the conquistadors began experimenting with the agave plant to find a way to make a distillable fermented mash. The result was mezcal.
Today, mezcal is still made from the heart of the agave plant, called the piña. In Mexico, mezcal is generally consumed straight and has a strong smoky flavor. Though other types of mezcal are not as popular as tequila (made specifically from the blue agave in select regions of the country).
Now lets talk about Photography…
As I have already told in my previous posts, photography is my passion, since 3 year ago I decided to always carry a camera with me, as I am convinced that the perfect photo is the one that you have not taken yet, you need to be prepared always. In this case I was driving to a place named Hierve el Agua, which is amazing by the way, and in the road I found a small “palenque” or a place in which craft mezcal is done, I stopped and entered the place.
There were just to persons in charge of the business, Mr. Odilon (the man in the upper photo) was in charge and the production and the sales. As soon as I saw him I tough that I would need to take some photos to remember this moment, my strategy was to be kind, talk with him. After some minutes talking, he and I felt more comfortable so I start talking about photography and I asked him if I can take some picture and this is the result…
If you have gone to Panama, you have might seen that there are many street barber shops. Yesterday a friend told me that he wanted to have his hair cut in one of this places and have a unique street photography to remember Panama from its roots.
I accepted the challenge and we went to one street barber shop, it was a good experience as this was the first time that I went to shoot with a clear image in my mind of what would be the end results, very different than in any other photowalk.
What I learned yesterday?
Street photography must needs be candid, but sometime you can also plan and create unique images. You just need to envision the end result, choose a good location and jump into action.
You need to always be open to new ideas, and just make it happen. I really liked the end result of the photos.
Street Photography is about having courage, in this case we were in “dangerous” zone of the city, but instead of putting barriers and think why not, we were very optimistic and we just went and shoot.
Here some images taken yesterday with my Olympus EM10 Mark II with the 17mm F1.8 lenses.
Graciela Iturbide is considered the most relevant Mexican photographer. She started studying cinematography and there she met Manuel Alvarez Bravo who is considered the father of Mexican Photography and who had a great influence in Graciela’s work.
Graciela still works with her analog camera as she prefer to keep doing what she called her ritual. Here my learnings:
All start with a passion. This is relevant for all aspects in life, to be a great photographer you need to feel it, you need enjoy, you need to have fun and be obsessed with your passion.
Is not about technique is about composition. Choose the subject of your image and what you want to tell about. Once that is clear select a good background that helps to tell the story, avoid distracting elements.
To be a great photographer you need to increase your culture. At the decisive moment all your pass knowledge and experience will play a vital role to decide what to shoot. Is very important to learn from others photographers, learn painting, poetry, architecture, classic music. Also if you are traveling to a new place is important to read about its history and traditions to decide what is relevante and imagine your photo before pressing the shooter.
For street photography interact with the people of the place. You need to be part of the place in which you will do your work, she used to spend 2 to 3 weeks in the place to interact with people, this will make the people familiar with you and be more relax in the decisive moment.
Here some links that you can use to know her work.
Just an image that I took in São Paulo with my Leica Q. Always try to see good opportilunkties to shoot in this case, lock for good light in the night combined with a reflection… shopping windows are always interesting.