"To devote oneself to or undertake an activity earnestly or wholeheartedly"

"Begin with vigor"

"A leap or dive as into water"

...are among the many very interesting explanations I came across when I chose to define what I am stating with this blog entry.

I will be honest, the title of this blog opened up many thoughts once I pinned down the title and started to research the deeper meaning of "plunge". It became extremely relevant, inspiring, symbolic, appropriate (and even prophetic if I may).

I first chose the title with water in mind, and the liberating privilege we have in modern days, for almost anybody being able to take a camera into the water. With action camera technology, such as Go Pro, we can bring to the rest of the world an environment that few get to experience and engage in.

Then I realized the deeper meaning of the word plunge. I always knew it is used in many other contexts, but when I saw it being written, I related with so much more of its meaning.

I have "plunged" into photography with far more than just a waterproof camera. I began with vigor to devote myself earnestly and wholeheartedly, undertaking the activity of photography. Specifically in the realm where athletes, people of ever day life, also devote themselves to what they are passionate about.

I appreciate the symbiotic relationship there exist, almost spontaneously, when you enter into an unconventional "arena" to photograph. The ocean, a dusty, dry dirt bike track or hanging of the edge of a cliff (yet to do a proper photo shoot for mountaineering but it is in the portfolio)

There is an appreciation and understanding between athlete and photographer when you are out there with them, fighting the same currents, inhaling the same dust so to speak. I believe it is the level of engagement that influence the outcome of the photo. It layers the image with authenticity. If for example the rip current is so strong that you simply can not get closer to the surf zone, the subject becomes remote in the image and the body mass of water dominates the seascape.

The elements often determine the outcome

For the most part, I have plunged into a whole new learning curve and that is exciting. With that comes growth. Growth equips you. Being equipped, enables us to invest in other people to reach for their dreams.

Father and son


NIKON D7000 with 18-200mm f3.5-f5.6 lens at 1/100sec f9.0 ISO 800

We all search. Different things perhaps, but my pursuit for perfect light is no secret. Light remains the crux of my exploration in photography. I find it in surprising places, and when you do, a industrious metal workshop turns into a studio that can not be replicated for all the money in the world.

NIKON D7000 with 18-200mm f3.5-f5.6 lens at 1/100sec f9.0 ISO 800

These images are taken with natural overcast light, flooding in from a distant giant sliding door to camera left, washing the space and turning it into magical world of textures. I am absorbed into story telling world and start imagining what a contrasting bright red dress would look like if you can do a fashion shoot inside this space. The world of photography teach me to stay humble and remain observant, pay attention to my environment and appreciate my surroundings for more than just face value.

NIKON D7000 with 18-200mm f3.5-f5.6 lens at 1/800sec f4.8 ISO 800

This harsh, industrial, dirty workshop, transformed into a magical space that is rich in character. This also helped me realize how often we aim for more equipment to justify our struggle to get great images, yet, with absolutely no other equipment than my camera itself and what can be considered a standard kit lens (NIKON D7000 with 18-200mm f3.5-f5.6 lens), yet by studying my location and composition I was able to reproduce images that with expensive studio lights and soft boxes etc, I would have most likely have failed to create.


When you have a prime lens, you yourself become the "zoom" of your lens. It has a rather important effect on how you approach each photo. For one, you pay more attention to composition and that is not a bad thing. The Troupe Grupo de Teatro put up a magnificent performance with their presentation "Cinderella".

As a photographer, I love being associated with a cause where the client is also passionate and dedicated to what they do. There is detail in all things that makes great photos. The expressions, costumes, lighting, all the factors that is out of your control in theater.

Back to the prime lens scenario. The show was performed in the university hall where the students also do their English studies. (Did I mention that the whole performance was done in their second language which made it even more spectacular to see them redefine their own boundaries and aim for the sky?) This allowed me to move around the auditorium fairly free to use my NIKON 105mm f2.8 (I know, it is actually for macro photography but as I mentioned in my previous post, it is what I have at the moment and saving up for more). I will find myself right in front of the stage for close up frames like the intro photo, and run all the way to the back for photos like the one above.

As you can see from the photos, my angle of view is different in each and I have a prime lens to thank for that. As I mentioned, it forces you to take greater consideration towards composition. If I had a zoom lens, I would most probably have stayed in one place, and just zoom in and out, making sure every actor fits into the frame. Because I moved around so much, I see the stage from a different angle each time and the story telling through the photos more interesting.

We all, I assume, know the tale of Cinderella so I am not going to post photos all the way to "and they lived happily ever after". I do want to share the great experience gained from having so called "limitations" with our equipment, where in this case, the limitation was the liberation and helped me get less static, less "monotonous" results for my client by approaching each photo from a new, fresh position, purely because the lens forced me to leave my comfort zone.

I could not resist..

"And they lived happily ever after"


You see it all the time and they leave you frustrated with your own work. You do not know where to find the right place, with the right atmosphere, light and good enough character to give your photos that edge to even start practicing how to get the same results.

I stumbled across La Mula in Rafaela - Santa Fe, when I listened to Brian Taylor (great band and music style is unique), which happens to be that kind of place to gain experience in exactly that.

The study of light is taking me on an interesting journey and is really taking my photos in a new direction. It is also leading me into a new revealing sobering reality. "What is the actual behavior of each lens?".

NIKON 35mm f1/8 1/40sec ISO 800

NIKON 105mm f2/8 1/60 sec. ISO 800

We all have seen multiple videos and they all say "shallow depth of field, go small f-stop". What they don't say is longer focal length compresses your image. Meaning? Technically (and feel free to comment and educate me since I am working on a "practice and learn" principle")  in the two above images, if the principle of small f-stop was (in it's simplest form) complete, then why is it that with a 35mm lens at f1/8 so much more is in focus than a 105mm at f2/8? Distance between the objects are relatively the same. Compression?

This is an import characteristic to take into account depending on the photo you are taking and the results you hope to achieve. For portrait I would love to use 105mm (it is what I have at the moment. Saving up for more) but the environment does not always allow to get that far away from my subject if I need a full body frame.

Get out there and practice and play with lenses before the pressure is on you at an event to get the money shot, just to find out afterwards the settings on camera was perfect and the image could have been even better if....

And that is the part I try to avoid, the "If only..."


October has been an eventful month in Rafaela, Argentina and much of the cultural highlights have taken place at DEL MUSEO"DR.URBANO POGGI". A beautifully restored heritage building that has served the city in multiple purposes and now, rightfully so, a magnificent art gallery and in collaboration with Foto Cine Club Rafaela also exibits alteranting photographic work, a library and classes in various art disciplines.

A more recent introduction was an exhibition resulting from a national competition for artists, or painters more specifically. Artistically a great success and inspirational work delivered.
 My attendance was both as photographer and appreciator of art alike. My intention to get photo journalistic photos involved including photographers in the photos to tell the story of the event. There was an advantage to that, a) I was certain to get angle of view that the other photographers might not have at that moment and b) it ads drama to my images as in the photo below.

I did not want to use flash myself but worked around some creative effects when the others did. The above image was taken in sequence to ensure I get that one frame where flashes fire towards me.

Mayor of the city and head of culture and art

It is liberating to become confident and comfortable with your equipment. It reduces the amount of time spent fiddling with dials and buttons and you are more "available" for moments, like this one above, when leading people of the event deliberately offer you an opportunity to capture a moment about them, which from where I was standing and what they are busy presenting, there was no way I could ask this gentleman to "please, can you look at the camera again for me? And hold it till I get the right settings on my camera please".

There is really good art to be seen right now if you are in the area. It is worth your time and the enthusiasm from public enables DEL MUSEO"DR.URBANO POGGI" to bring us some great work in the future.


Redondo en Boca, a wine specialist in Rafaela, Argentina, hosted a photographic competition and the description to the photo translates

3rd PLACE "Always Invited"

My representation on the theme was inspired by the age old presence of wine in society. It has a timeless history and involves a delicate process in the making. Those who have already acquired an appreciation for it's sophisticated flavors, find themselves lured to it's mysterious "secrets" contained in each bottle.

Simultaneously for those who are yet to comprehend the art of wine making and the depiction thereof in flavor, find themselves tempted to, if at least once, taste.

There is a perpetual invitation poised by wine. It's prominence and importance throughout society makes us all curious, connoisseurs and spectators alike. 

So what is behind the making of the photo?

1. A two hour photo session (a bit less than what it takes to make wine).

2. Leg cramps (from tip toeing on wobbly stacked crates to catch the light falling of the arched roof.

3. A very proud third place (ironically the third point on the list) in the competition.

It was taken in a small storage room in the basement of a local restaurant. I played with the white balance setting more than any other variable. The accent light on the bottles is from an existing controllable spot light, which also had a slight conflicting tint to the mood I was trying to capture. The light I loved to hate that day. It emphasized my subject but in the wrong color.

I realize more often than not, professional photography involves problem solving. That is, if you know what you are trying to achieve. With a clear vision comes a greater awareness when things are of target. The problem solving bring things back on track.

A rewarding process. Almost like wine making!!

My respect and appreciation to the wine makers around the world and thank you once again to Redondo en Boca for the opportunity to express our work as photographers. 

A toast to third and may this not become a rule but, next time, a second or first place!!


We have an expression that, when translated comes down to "When the opportunity is there, do not take it for granted".

In the event of festivities, every aspiring photographer has such a unique opportunity to give themselves a go at studio photography at very low if not no cost at all. All they need to provide is dedication, initiative and willingness to attend as many shows as possible.

Rafaela City, Argentina is celebrating their 134th birthday with an array of spectacular shows exhibiting local talent, which I may add could easily compete with international top artists. What was captivating is the passion each artist displays for their particular activity. This make the photos you get, so much more soulful and rich, with the added bonus of vibrant studio lights playing around the artists, altering the mood and quality of light all the time. 

It is also a ripe harvest for very effective promotion of your own work and business. Social media is a busy hive of activity of sharing and curiosity during these events. It also provides you with an open door to contribute to society and give something back. Find the organizers and artists and provide them with photos to show your appreciation of their hard work.

In essence, you get the to add imagery to your portfolio with character, great lighting setups and upgraded photography skills and techniques. The value of contributing to community also count high for my personal values and ethic, whether personal or work related.


Bright, sunny afternoons can be all you want for a relaxing fun day out. Unless... you are a photographer.

Now, I am not quantifying light by "good" or "bad" light. Bright, hard light was just not suitable for what I was trying to represent through my photos this day. Fortunate to enjoy the performance while waiting patiently for clouds to "soft box" my only light source, I would jump straight back into action to capture some frames. The band members directly faced the sun which can be harsh. The clouds helped and I further "softened" the overall amount of light in the photos by composing most of my photos on the shadow side of my subjects.

This allowed me to use very small aperture values for portrait type photos which the band members enjoyed and appreciated (Tip: They serve well as profile photos on social media which people update constantly and can provide good publicity If they select your work for this purpose). I tried to capture something more about the actual event of a music performance than just "a band performing and playing music" and included various elements combined with the "expected" repertoire.

Musicians are often passionate and proud of their equipment and instruments. Part of what I wanted to offer them is to capture that, it does not go by unnoticed. Not only did it provide me with very nice details to photograph, the audience take you more serious as an up and coming band. 

Another "behind the scenes essential" is most probably the team behind all the wonderful entertainment up on stage. Of all the photos taken this day, the sound technician expressed the greatest appreciation for capturing him in action. These people have a business to run as well and more often than not, for all their hard work they hardly receive any publicity. When capturing an event, to represent the whole story, it is not a bad idea to do so with all the characters involved. 

An art form in itself