Yes, hello world!
Welcome to the beginning of a new journey. Well, in reality, is not a new one but a fresh continuation with a new vision of a journey that began over 50 years ago in the studio of my uncle, ‘Manolo”. In the “pages” of this website, I hope to share my travel, stories, musings, photographs and films of the places, cultures, and people I have and will encounter in my journey.
As a boy, I loved to visit my uncle in the town of Vega Alta, Puerto Rico. It was a magical place for an eight years old kid.
My uncle, Manuel Medina Escalera, or as I knew him, Manolo, was what we call in Puerto Rico “un Hombre de Letras,” a man of the arts. He was a painter, a writer, a poet, a musician, and a politician. He even helped create a political party: “Partido Independentista Puertorriqueño,” ran for mayor and was jailed for his pro-independence ideology in 1950’s during one of the darkest periods in Puerto Rico, “La Ley de la mordaza.”.
Whenever my parents went to visit him, I could not wait to go into his studio and look in awe at his collection of books, paintings, and magazines. It was there where I saw my first copy of Life Magazine and National Geographic. The images and stories on those pages transported me to far away places and cultures.
In the late 60’s my dad started a small newspaper in my house. I remember following my dad whenever he went to cover stories for his paper. Those were turbulent years in Puerto Rico, very much like the were in the US.
A day that seems like any other day to me, I followed my dad on an assignment to cover a student protest that was in progress at the University of Puerto Rico. The students and teachers opposed the presence of the ROTC on the campus and the war in Vietnam. I remember seeing how smoke rose over the area from burning of some buildings and later heard of the tragic death of a student in the hands of a police officer.
My dad taught me the importance of being a witness, of telling the stories, of seeking the truth. I even started school newspapers and attempted to make a film in High School.
So you can say that the passion for seeking the truth, for storytelling and artistic communication was written very early into my DNA and since then has forged my journey in life.
As I learned more about photography in my college years, I was captivated by the works of photographers like Eugene W. Smith, Dorothea Lange, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Jack Delano, among others. For the first time, I understood the power of images and art to move our hearts, communicate ideas, and change lives.
Many things have happened since those days. Many turn and twists in my journey. But one common thread is a passion for communicating ideas and emotions through storytelling and art.
I later was able to complete my college education at the prestigious University of Puerto Rico and study law. I also studied advertising photography and worked as a photojournalist for several years before opening a wedding photography studio in 2005 through we see to tell the stories of our couples.
This new venture, what I call “Travel and Adventures Photography: A Photographer’s Journey,” is finally a fulfillment of my storytelling DNA. I hope to be able to share through this website in my stories, photographs, and films a passion for the world God gave us. I want to share and celebrate the beauty and the hope in our world. I want to go deeper and show the richness and beauty that God has imprinted in each one of us.
Will you join me in this journey?