David's Blog

FINGER

The moment you point the finger at someone criticizing or judging them:

Look how many fingers point at you!
Humans have problems with communication. You, me and everyone else.
Unfortunately we don't learn that in school. And some people never learn to communicate.
It is a life long journey. We have to switch from "me" to "you".
A conflict is not about being right. It is trying to really understand the other one.
And please try to understand and be understood.
We all are not perfect. We see and experience things differently.
If we fight, criticize each other and trying to be right and make the other one feel wrong, we will not find a solution. This is one reason why relationships fall apart.
LACK OF GOOD COMMUNICATION.
LISTEN, DON'T POINT YOUR FINGER, TRY TO UNDERSTAND AND BE UNDERSTOOD.
It's not about who is right or wrong. It's about how can we fix this as a team.

HOW can I be a better communicator?
Education! There is a lot of good imformation online.

But for starters, what worked best for me:
Let the other one finish their thoughts, without interruption. Let the person speak so long until they have nothing to say.
Then take a pause, think about what has been said.
Now it's your turn. Ask the other person to return the favor, to talk without being interrupted.

That's the first step. Being a good communicator and problem solver takes a life time of learning.

So let's start NOW!

PERSISTANCE

A party at the countryside is refreshing for the soul.
BUT.
It's nature! So many flies wanting to get some free food and drinks.
Impressive, how persistent they are!
You can move your hand as much you want, they come back to the exact same spot.
Probably laughing at you!
They have their goal in mind and nothing can stop them (except a newspaper).
At some point I just gave up and shared my drink with the fly.
Inspirational!
A little thing with a small brain has more willpower than a human.
Imagine, what would be possible if we would be persistent like the little fly!

:)

Do you see a face?
It's a very common phenomenon to see faces in ordinary objects.
Our brain is on overdrive interpreting things around us.
Babies process faces long before they recognize other objects.
Incredible moving images of unborn infants before their birth,
show that they turn their heads towards shapes which resemble faces. But when they see a random shape, they ignore it.

We all have this ability built in to see faces where there are none.

Fortunately, all the faces looking at me are friendly ones.

HOT

It was a hot day. So hot that my camera almost melted.

But it didn't hold me back from taking pictures.
The one thing (of many) I like about photography is:
No matter what the circumstances are or the challenges in life I face, photography lets me be in the present and for a few hours I forget "reality".
Why not take a break of reality? It will be there later to return to.
Meanwhile I can take a pause of analyzing yesterday and a pause of planning tomorrow.

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our Light, not our Darkness, that most frightens us."

"Breathe - Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.”

SURREAL MOMENT

Sergio and I met for a surreal portrait session.

While walking around downtown in search of great locations, I came across the bar with the red lights.
Perfect! But..... there was a man sitting on the only seat available.
I asked him if we could have the space one minute to take some pictures.
He agreed, took his stuff AND instead of standing up he moved over.
"OK, whatever" I thought and Sergio sat down.
Once I started taking pictures, the Mexican Santa Claus put his arm around Sergio.

What a surreal moment!

WHAT KIND OF PHOTOS..

.. do you take? - People have been asking me in my journey as a photographer.

Even though I know that it is a popular question, I don't have an answer.
"A photo says more than 1000 words" - And I show them my photos.
Really, what can I say? What do you see? Surreal? Abstract? Mysterious?

How would you describe it?

YES!

Eduardo and I had an appointment to take surreal portraits with the full moon.
There were some challenges!
On the way to him a thunderstorm started.
I realized that I left my memory card for the camera in my computer.
There was no moon. All the time, no moon! It was covered by clouds.
Then it started raining.
Many times I had thoughts of just stopping.
But NO! I said YES to the challenges.
I bought a memory card, used a sun sheet to cover my camera from the rain.
We went to different locations.

We struggle with thoughts of giving up or make comprosmises like "tomorrow".
I had this thoughts many times during the shooting. But I said to myself: YES!

F... YOU - THANK YOU

Shop windows, mannequins, sexy underwear & someone doing something next to the mannequins: I love that setup!

I was taking pictures of the mannequins when a young girl (working there) showed me the middle finger with an angry face.

I was laughing so hard, that the following pictures were all blurry.
While laughing I checked, if a got that beautiful moment.
Yes, I got it!
I showed the girl the finger as well, but the thumb: (y) and said: THANK YOU!

Afterwards I got inspired:
In future, if people want to provoke me, criticize me, play games, try to make me jealous or start to fight with me:
I will smile and inside myself I will say: Thank you, I don't want your negative energy in my system.

And I'll keep on walking.

SURREAL PORTRAITS.

Surrealism. What is that? And why do people call something surreal?

Liz and I were talking about it at an surreal art exhibition.
"That's strange" people say about things which are not ordinary.

But in fact they are not strange. Imagine if there would be more of those strange things, then the ordinary objects would become strange.
All over the world, we have more or less the same style of things.
But imagine a country which almost has nothing from "our world".
People from that country visiting our "ordinary" country, would be totally perplexed about the amount of surrealism.

I'm attraced to surrealism. It is refreshing & stimulating for the mind.

A new project is born: SURREAL PORTRAITS.

AUTHENTIC MOMENT

Today my attention was drawn to this boy and girl. They were hugging for a long time.
Then they talked, while the boy had his hands on the girl all the time. Hugging, talking and again hugging.
I could not figure out if it was a hug of expressing love or support. Maybe something bad happened.
I observed them a long time. I was fascinated by the strong emotion. It was so authentic.
They didn't care and see who was watching or taking photos.
The girl didn't have her hands on him.

What was going on here?​

NUMBER ONE

I have been thinking a lot: what is the number one ingredient which makes a portrait great?

There are many ingredients: light, shadows, location, background, camera settings, the right lens, creativity and a good connection to the model.
All of them are important.

BUT.

Which is the number ONE?

For me the number one ingredient for a great portrait is:
AUTHENTICITY! The moment where the wall is down, being "lost in thought", not thinking about the camera, having a raw emotion.
That's why I don't like portraits where you smile. A smile is like a wall. One exception: if the smile is natural, then it's ok.
Do you know what I mean?

We all walk around with a walls. I hear somebody screaming: "No, not me". Ok, there are exceptions. But I believe we all walk around with walls, some bigger - some smaller.

For my taste, you can sacrifice all other ingredients, as long as you get an authentic, raw moment with the model.
There are so many beautiful portrait photos out there. Everything is perfect, but the one ingredient is missing: authenticity.
And I have been guilty of it, too. Most of my portraits have this missing ingredient. Because I was not aware of it.

This is what I want to focus on more. Catch the authentic moment.

[ih-maj-uh-ney-shuh n]

"..forming mental images or concepts of what is not actually present to the senses."

On my lunch walk around my neighboorhood I started laughing seeing that cone.
While capturing that moment, the security came and asked why I'm taking a picture.
I told him "Take a closer look"
It took him a second but he started cracking up as well and took also a picture.
I took a picture of him taking a picture, for proof that is not only me.
How can you not see that?

Imagine what this cone looked like in the late afternoon!

Mexico, I love you! - Everyday you make me smile. Gracias!

VACATION

Today I got invited to fly. So I packed my suitcase and passport.

Called an Uber and went to the airport.
When I arrived I realized I won't fly anywhere.....

BUT I

- had an excellent BBQ
- great conversations
- got known to a new Amiga in Uber
- got a nice tan (and red nose)
- learned new things about flying

I didn't leave the city but it felt like vacation!

Thank you!

THANK YOU

A long time ago I closed a dark chapter of my life. A chapter full of drama, pain, destruction & no future.

After closing that chapter I withdraw myself. Until my dad gave me a small compact camera.
That moment changed history, my history.
I became curious about life. I went out to see the beauty around me. Through photography I learned to be more attentive,
to leave the past behind and focus on the moment.
Also the camera brought me where the action is. I felt so alive!
Photography connected me to interesting people around the world.
I want to decicated that post the photographers I met along my journey.
Thank you for all those beautiful moments, walking together and looking for motives.
Talking about life and technical stuff, inspiring and challenging each other. You play a part in my journey. You are in my photos and in my heart.

Thank you.

NONCONFORMIST

Dictionary: "a person who refuses to conform, as to established customs, attitudes, or ideas."

The SYSTEM wants people not to stand out. Followers are not a danger and easier to control.
The programming works. People keep a low profile, follow trends, don't give contra and COPY to be part of it.
What happenes to those who go against trends and who think their own thoughts? Exactly!

Look at the pictures! Where did your focus go? To the "followers" or the nonconformist?

There is beauty going against the flow.

Writing this article I just realized, that the one doesn't exist with the other.
So in order for the noconformist to shine, we NEED followers.

But a few more noncoformists wouldn't hurt, no?

PHOTOGRAPHER

"Every photograph someone takes is also a type of self-portrait reflecting them,
because each contains information about the person who made it.
Its visual contents metaphorically represent what was important enough to the photographer's eyes
at that moment that they chose to freeze it permanently.
Even though they may well not be in that picture themselves,
every step of choosing where, when, who, how, and why to take any photograph
says as much about its creator as it does about the subject matter being recorded on film."​

DON'T READ THIS

How do you feel if you see a button and it says: "don't push it"?

Doesn't a "DON'T!" make you feel more like a "DO"?

When I walked by I and saw that sign I felt a strong urge to take a photo!
Without the sign I would not have bothered.
I did nothing wrong. The law says, that you can take pictures in public.
While taking that picture I was on the street, so totally legal.

After I took the picture I thought:
"Maybe they shop who sells the dresses does it on purpose!"
On purpose? Yes! Maybe they know about "Reverse Psychology".
Or maybe not. However, it could be used as a strategy to get people to take photos of the store and to share it with others.
I am sure this technique is used in marketing!