Documentary Photography

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Hello friends,

After a long absence due to various photographic commitments, and not only, I come back today with a theme that seems interesting because any of us, with more or less photographic experience, can explore.

I am talking about documentary photography, an area where, as its name implies, we will document something through our own experience of the event. It can be a cultural, sporting event, a region, a job, etc.

The interesting thing about this type of photography is that we can and, if possible, we must give our personal inside, our visual interpretation, of we want to document. I’m not saying that we fake the description of the event, it means we can describe it with a different look, highlighting what attracts us the most, highlighting the details that can make the difference in the way we tell the story.

For this I’m going to show some pictures I made last year in Elvas, at the feasts of St Matthew, in honor of St. Jesus of Piety. These parties include, among other activities, a procession and the respective Fair of St. Matthew.

In an unpretentious way, without much preparation, I tried to photograph some aspects of the procession, as well as small fair clippings in its night life.

As I said above, there are certainly many ways to document both the procession, and the fair, however, my choice in the way to tell the story was through the record of details that were bouncing me into sight as it went through them. I think this is a good way to photographically document the event, without the concern of tell the story of the event as is, rather show my personal vision.   

Trying to illustrate what moved me in the way I photographed, I can say that, as far as the procession is concerned, I had the concern to photograph the connection between those who go in the procession and those who watch on the edge of the sidewalk. Details of acts of devotion, such as barefoot lady or the lit candle of a promise that is fulfilled.

If you notice some of the photos, they’re not technically very perfect, even though there’s some blur and ‘grain’ in some, but this even enhances the aspect of improvisation, the chance in which the photo had to be made.  

When it comes to the photos of the fair, there was the curiosity to photograph what I consider most ‘typical’ in this type of fairs, the ‘King of Knives’, the ‘Farturas’ ladies, or the candy stall, but always in a perspective of connection with the people who visit them.

Another aspect that attracted my attention was the colorful of the tents that is customary at these fairs, as well as the ‘sophisticated’ promotional signs, the last ‘fashion’ in terms of marketing. These are aspects always present at popular fairs.

Finally, as we were in election campaign season, there was no shortage of opportunity to make a ‘snapshot’ of a candidate for legislative elections, always usual presences in these popular events.

I don’t want to finish without first inviting them to visit and subscribe to our new project, the Photofinders photo community ( because it will be through of this project that I can best help them have fun learning and developing your photographic skills.

I hope you enjoyed it, and bye until the next post.

Kisses and hugs.

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