After six months serving in Afghanistan, last Friday 34 Portuguese Soldiers return home safe. In the airport terminal the families were impatiently waiting for them. It was a very touching moment to photograph as the emotions were on top and I almost could feel what the families and soldiers were feeling. Every day we hear bad news on the TV, and for the families it must be hard to think on the beloved ones working on war zones, so seeing them after six months was a very relief and special moment.
Last week I start shooting my first soccer games. The first game was for the Champions League between Benfica and Copenhagen. Benfica won by 2-1 with the player Rui Costa scoring the two goals. The stadium was full and just before the game start the Eagle that is the symbol of Benfica flew inside the stadium delighting all the crowd. The second game was for the Portuguese League between Sporting and Academica. Sporting won by 5-1. For the two games I took with me two cameras a Canon 1D Mark II N with the amazing Canon lens 300mm 2.8L. mounting it in a monopod and a Canon 20D changing it between two lenses the 24-70mm 2.8L and the 70-200mm is 2.8L. I also took my laptop to transmit the photos to the agency. I can see a big difference in my evolution in just two games but of course I need to shoot much more games to became efficient and get the trust of my editors. So far I love the experience.
Well its summer and there is not much things happening in Lisbon and I'm not having that much assignments, normally doing just one service a day and nothing really hot as news, only the temperatures in Lisbon. This gives me time to go back to my archive and organize it and look again to old photos. One of the folders of photos I've been organizing and editing is the one with photos from New York. I went there last December to attend a four days Photography Workshop of Raw Workflow by D65. I stayed for two weeks and during that time I always carried my camera with me doing thousands of photographs. In New York streets there is so much diversity of people and cultures, you can find people from all over the world, and I don't mean tourists but people that live there and consider them selfs "locals". I personally think it it one of the most amazing cities in terms of stories and moods. The streets of New York have a unique atmosphere that I tried to capture and transmit in my photographs. Because I think that these little moments I capture with my camera are history, and of course will never repeat again, I prefer the black and white format. Here are just a few photos from this period in New York.
Last summer I visit Crater Lake in Oregon USA, it was the first day of summer and it was a beautiful sunny day with no wind. Crater Lake is the main feature of Crater Lake National Park and famous for its deep blue color and water clarity. In the photo you can see a couple enjoying this amazing view.
Another photo of the series of my personal collection of "New Ways of see Landscapes". In this one you can see a man fishing on the Atlantic Ocean in the west coast of Portugal, it is near the town Peniche and is a really amazing place to visit.
When we think of landscapes we normally imagine those beautiful photos on the postcards or amazing places that we already visit during our life. In this process we tend to forget that man has stamped his mark upon it and that no matter how virgin is the place in front of our eyes we are or were there and that in that place there is man interaction, whether by direct action like urbanization, deforestation, leisure parks, electrical lines, roads, etc or by consequences of indirect actions like global warming that are gradually changing this landscapes. I personally like to see beautiful photos like those in postcards with amazingly beautiful places but I find them a bit boring. I am now searching on my archives for photos where I capture a landscape or a cityscape with human interaction on that particular moment. I try on this photographs to express this symbioses where I want to put together the landscape or cityscape and the people who are enjoying it or that are part of it. This will by a long term project where I will by publishing old photos and new ones. The first one you can see a man and The Statue of Liberty, one of most touristic places in New York, it was taken in December 2006 in a beautiful but cold day when I went to do the touristic ferry boat trip around Manhattan. Enjoy it.