An image from my project on violence in Guatemala was featured in a poster and application for the Open Society Justice Initiative summer school session on human rights litigation. If you are interested in applying for this program, please click here: OSF
I am so thankful to Newsweek picture editor Leah Latella (who is also a rockin' folk singer and musician) for publishing my project, La Vida No Vale Nada, on the effects of violence in post-war Guatemala.
"Last year, there were 34.5 murders for every 100,000 people in the country. That’s a decreased rate from previous years, although the first half of 2013 actually showed an increasing number of murders. Violence still touches far too many lives in Guatemala, where nearly 100 people were murdered each week last year."
Please click on the link above to read the story and to the see the project.
I feel very fortunate that this photo essay continues to be published around the world! Please check out the work: Wrecking Homes for the Olympics
"Largo do Tanque is one of many neighborhoods being torn down to build the Transcarioca highway, which will facilitate traffic flowing to Olympic sites for the 2016 Summer Games."
My work from Guatemala's food insecurity project called, Green Hunger, was recently published in the Christina Science Monitor as part of a featured issue on rising food prices. It was an intense few days of working on this project last August and I'm thrilled its been published. Click on the picture to view it bigger. The spread is not online, so I've added my text below.
Jalapa, Guatemala - Throughout this fertile land is a hidden problem; chronic malnutrition among children. The rate here is the highest in Latin America and the sixth highest in the world, says the US Agency for International Development (USAID).
Chronic malnutrition is not simple the lack of food but a lack of nutrients in the kinds of food consumed - mostly beans and corn tortillas. Researchers say half of the children under age 5 here are chronically malnourished , leading to poor development, both physically and mentally. The government, aware that the nation's future is at stake, has launched Hambre Cero (Zero Hunger), a program that includes food supplements for pregnant women and infants.
That's not enough, according to José Luis Vivero Pol, director of Action Against Hunger in Central America (ACH), a nongovernmental organization. He reports that the crux of the problem is the "hungry season" when crop reserves from the previous year run low. To address this in a sustainable way, he and others say, the government must see to the needs of small farmers for land, credit, and expertise in order to boost crop yields. National policies that encourage food exports at the expense of production for national consumption also need to be modified.
Guatemala, with a population of 14 million, is one of the world's top exporters of sugage, coffee, bananas, and corn. Ironically, those most affected by chronic hunger here are farming families.
Humanitarian organizations like ACH aim to educate villagers about nurtrition and urge them to grow vergetables native to their climates. They support beekeeping and building greenhouses to protect seedlings from severe weather. Also, fair-trade coffee growing amkes that crop more profitable for farmers to grow.
I'm happy to share that an image from my project, La Vida No Vale Nada, about violence in Guatemala, was recently chosen by American Illustration American Photography Latin America 2012 list.
Here in Guatemala on Dia de los Muertos, or otherwise known as Todos Santos - All Saints Day - families get together and fly kites, have picnics, drink, and be merry at the cemetaries of their deceased. On Monday I went with a friend to check out the kites at Santiago Sacatepequez....to the cemetary where it overlooks a lush green valley.
Recently Geoffery Hiller of Verve Photo blog featured a photograph from a personal project I began working on it in 2009 about morality and addiction in Cambodia. I'm stoked to be a part of a very long list of talented photographers, colleagues, and friends in the photojournalism community.
The project is largely self-funded. And i've been back to Cambodia several times to work on a variety of stories, including this one. (The project not yet on my website).
Please click on the link above to read about the photograph and project. And feel free to leave comments here!
Many people don't know this but I would love a 1961 2-door convertible Ford Falcon. Thats right. Specifically. One that runs well, and not a pimped out hot rod. The color would be blue. or white, but definitely not red. My first car was almost a mid-1970s bmw. it was orange. we saw it on Mission Blvd in Fremont, but my mother thought that the diesel gas it took was too impractical and worried that this cute little car would leave me stranded, out of gas, somewhere. So she bought me a 1983 mint green Honda Civic. For $100. It was the closest thing to a vintage automobile that i could get. and that was in 1993. damn. It didn't last long, after I blew the head gasket. ah well. I also have a thing for vintage motorcycles, but thats a story for another time.
Here's a portrait of a short, surreal moment. As I looked down into the viewfinder (hasselblad), I felt like I was taken back in time. It reminded me of my family pictures - my mother's side. The stoic, for the record, kind of portraiture. This is a quinceneara I photographed in Napa. Originally I was suppose to photograph a family that I had met prior but I couldn't find them. So this family let me photograph them.
and from the sidelines, they watched:
Toxic Tour is an environmental investigative journalism project supported by the California Endowment. I'm excited to be collaborating with audio producer and reporter Jasmin Lopez, and several other outstanding journalists and community activist -- photo/multimedia Suzy Salazar, photographer Zackary Canepari, videographer/photographer Sandra Garcia, and non-profit director Lucia Torres
"Dissected by five major freeways and neighbor to several industries, the residents of Boyle Heights face significant amounts of noise, air, industrial and traffic pollutants every day. As part of the award-winning “Toxic Tour” reporting project sponsored by Newsdesk.org and Spot.Us, this project will bring you coverage from this underreported community highlighting the detrimental effects caused by pollution and other harmful environmental health factors."
Please click on the link to read more about All Roads Lead to Boyle Heights and help support independent journalists bring these stories to light. Their issues and stories need to be shared so that it can stimulate change in policies. Please share this post or the Boyle Heights link.