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Off Duty for 5 Minutes

These guards were at in the street leading up to the entrance of the Taj Mahal at Agra. There had been some disturbances the night before (a curfew was imposed not long after this shot was taken) and these soldiers were relaxing for 5 minutes. It was very much a grab shot as I don’t tend to hang about too long when photographing anybody with weapons especially if there is a chance that their English might not be too good. A little Photoshop work was necessary to remove extraneous parts of other bodies in the shot.

On the Streets in Havana

This gentleman seemed to be eking out a living on the streets in Havana by selling roasted nuts. We couldn’t communicate but the camera and a small tip told him what I wanted.

Citizen of Vinales

There was something about this gentleman sitting at the side of the road in Vinales. I think it was the mix of the white cap, designer sunglasses and the big cigar with that wizened face that prompted me to indicate to him that I wanted to take his photograph. He was quite willing to pose.

Home of the Champion Cock Fighter

Cock Fighting is a popular ’sport’ in Cuba and the people are quite proud of raising champion cocks. I wanted the door in the shot but I didn’t necessarily want it empty. I knew that there was somebody in the house and I knew that I had been been seen. I just waited until the man started to wonder what I was doing with my camera pointed towards his house and came to the front door. I knew what I wanted – I just had to wait for the image to come together. Trinidad, Cuba

Just Married in Havana

As in the UK, many marriages happen at weekends and then all the couples seem to descend on the main squares in Havana to be photographed. This was one such couple.

Havana Shoe Shine

There are a few shoe shines on the streets in Havana. I liked the simplicity of this shot though I worked on it a little in Photoshop to make the colours a little more pastel and to bring out a little more detail – grittiness if you like. It seems to have given the image a pen-and-ink artistic feel which I find quite pleasing.

Behind Bars

This was the front door of a house in a back street behind the hotel in Havana. I was photographing the street scene and saw this lady approaching the security grille (as it’s hot in Havana, doors are normally left open for ventillation but intruders are kept out by these grilles). I turned my camera towards the grille just as she turned to look at me. I don’t think she was too happy to have her image taken! I was very lucky to have got both her eyes in the shot.

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