Portrait of a Small Girl from Chiapas, Mexico

Photographing people in this area of the world is difficult. The indigenous people have been photographed so much that they seem to have ‘camera radar’ and can spot you when your standing 80 feet away with a telephoto pointed in there direction! Well it’s not that bad, really, but it can be challenging – especially because we’re encouraging everyone to make contact and get in closer for those wonderful people images.

Our group last week had n arranged portrait session with   5 indigenous people. I didn’t photograph it much, as I was too busy holding diffusers and helping to translate the participants’ wishes for positioning, gestures, etc. But while traveling you find many portrait opportunities in the ‘field’. This little girl was running around in the background at a restaurant all the leaders ate at the first day. I first had noticed the glow from the sunny courtyard that was bouncing light up onto the walls under the portico. When I then saw how cute she was, I knew I had a picture worth making. It’s important to keep your mind and eyes open for opportunities no matter what you’re doing.

When we traveled to Chamula, this man was the ticket-taker at the church, a very sacred place where pagan rituals (including live animal offerings) were being performed to help heal the people. We were not allowed to photograph inside at all, but I had to ask if he would let us photograph him when I saw how wonderful the background was! It’s important to take advantage of any opportunity, and always worth asking for a picture of a face you like.

Mexican Man, Chamula, Mexico