Travel Photography

‘Mi Amiga, Mimi’

20160123_TGL_CUBA_DSC2265_edit_10x8_final_web_wtrmrkIt gives me great pleasure to pay tribute my new friend Mimi on International Women’s Day. This incredibly hard working woman, Mother, Grandmother, and soon-to-be friend could speak no english. I could  speak little to no spanish, yet that never seemed a concern. Mimi welcomed our group to her Casa where she and three generations of her family cared for us during our stay in Havana. She and I seemed to understood each other, easy enough. It wasn’t long before we were laughing and hugging each day. When the news of my brothers passing was received, we found ourselves embracing in tears as she gently comforted me in my loss.

The Urban Dictionary describes the word ‘Mimi’ to mean ‘a wonderful friend. Sweet, funny, sarcastic, but GREAT and beautiful.’ How perfect.

More Cuba images here:…/Travel/Travel-Cuba

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#‎InternationalWomensDay #‎Cuba #‎Havana #Casa #‎TGLCuba #‎TheGivingLens #‎TravelPhotography #‎LoveCuba #‎SonyAlpha #‎BorrowLenses #Portrait

‘Fidel, Fidel Tell Us What Else Can We Do’? ‘Study, Study, Study’! Came The Reply. – December 22nd 1961

20160127_TGL_CUBA_DSC3822_edit_final_final_web_wtrmrkUpon stepping into Municipal Library Gustavo Izquierdo of Trinidad at #265 street Marti in the commercial and administrative area of the city center, my senses were assailed with the scent of old (and I mean ‘weary’ old) books. The building itself was stately but in desperate need of repair, as much of Cuba is. It contained rows of shelves, neatly lined with well used, yellow paged books, many with rebuilt bindings and all somewhat faded of color. The black and white tiles on the floors were rather striking and under all that age, the past splendor of the original building could not be denied. I closed my eyes for a moment and easily imagined a huge ballroom full of dancing, beautifully dressed guests. The shutters, if there were any, hung in tatters on crooked window frames, no blinds were present so that natural light and dust were free to drift in. There were no doors on the baño which was tragically outfitted with ‘more than’ seriously challenged plumbing. The center courtyard was home to what must have once been a lovely fountain but it clearly had not seen flowing water in years. And yet … like everywhere in Cuba, there were people making the most of what was available to them and the quest for learning was all around us. Individual rooms around the courtyard were buzzing with office activity and very small class rooms held adults studying with an educator. Two older women were learning English, making me smile.
According to information collected by the *UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) on behalf of UNESCO with 2015 estimates based on people aged fifteen or over, Cuba has an outstanding literacy rate of 99.7%! Education is available to everyone in Cuba and mandatory from 6 to 15 years of age. Students are offered free education through university, medical school, technical schools and other professional programs. Everyone in Cuba is expected to work and everyone is expected to read. There are some 400 public libraries in Cuba and all are overseen by the National Library director. There is a large library in every municipality and a smaller library in each community. There are even branches in remote areas on the island. I was very pleased to learn through that all public libraries in Cuba also provide services for people with disabilities. There are libraries in every school, classes are required to attend the library once a week and often they are open for evening classes, as well. Adding to Cuba’s extraordinary commitment to reading and education, there is a University in every province of Cuba that provides a five year library degree program where graduates receive a BA degree in librarianship and the science of information.
Pat Corlin Photography
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More images of Cuba:
#Biblioteca #Library #Books #YearOfEducation #LiteracyBrigades #CubanLiteracyCampaign #ConradoBenitezBrigade #PopularAlphabetizers #FatherlandBrigade #SchoolTeacherBrigades #KingSejongLiteracyPrize #MunicipalLibraryGustavoIzquierdoOfTrinidad #Cuba #Trinidad #LoveCuba #TGLCuba#TheGivingLens #TravelPhotography #SonyAlpha #BorrowLenses

‘The Scrapper’‘The Scrapper’

This is a very special and rather ‘non-traditional’ image to begin presenting my visual and rather ‘non-traditional’ journey through the compelling streets of Cuba.  As my fellow travelers, family and close friends are aware, the sudden passing of my brother and soulmate occurred about a third of the way through +The Giving Lens’s first workshop to Cuba.  I could not have made it through the journey without the kindness of each and every member of our #TGLCuba team. My gratitude for your support and continued friendship is immense.

As was his way, my brother told me to ‘get on that plane, take lots of pictures’ and (of course) bring me back a Cuban cigar’. Chuck was always pushing me to do what was in my heart, encouraging me to get everything out of this life while the getting was good. I took him at his word and got on the plane, not knowing he was leaving this world in a matter of days. When I heard the news from home I was thrown into an emotional roller coaster. Panic nearly set in as I tried everything but was not able to secure an early departure out of Cuba. Faced with the reality that I simply could not return to where my heart ached to be, I fell into a survival mode of my own, compartmentalizing my emotions as I had no choice but to try and honor him by doing what he wanted most for me.  I honestly believe the my brother had some hand in making me complete the trip. I took a deep breath (many in fact), sat down on the sidewalks of Havana and Trinidad to observe the streets before me and I began photographing.  Before I knew it I was drawn to the four legged animals of the streets and the rooftops. It was here I found the world of ‘The Scrapper’.  Captured on my last day on the island and very nearly the last photograph I took, this one dog, this Scrapper stood out amongst the many. Hungry, covered in dirt, ticks and God knows what else, he moved methodically down the streets, sticking his nose in every bag, finding bits and pieces to nibble on before moving on to another pile. Most people might see this as a terrible life of an exhausting, never ending quest to do whatever it takes to survive.  I, on the other hand, saw a friendly and seemingly happy dog who liked to walk with the humans passing by, a bounce in his step and tail wagging furiously … always. His spirit remained strong though his circumstances seemed dire. The irony did not escape me and it made me smile. Over the years, my brother’s many efforts in his own  struggles to survive led me to describe him to others as a ‘Hell of a Scrapper’.  He fought cancer with dignity and a great spirit. We had more years and memories than predicted because of this.  Cancer finally figured him out and took him from us, but not without one Hell of a fight. Those us us left behind remain her to honor him, his life, his love and his strengths.  Whatever images come from my Cuban Journey are dedicated to my brother’s life … the life of ‘The Scrapper.’

Pat Corlin Photography
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#AnimalImagery #FourLeggedPhotography #Dogs #StreetDog #Scrapper#AnimalPortraits #Cuba #Havana  #DogsOfCuba

My Office Today aaaaand Nope, that is NOT my Nikon ;-)

Pat Corlin  Photography
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#NewToys #MOT #Hawaii #Dusk #Sunset #DiamondHeadCrater #Oahu #Sony #a7II #FormatHiTech

Don’t Even THINK About It!

Don't Even THING About It!

Don’t Even THING About It!

Off East Oahu, breathtaking views abound at the “Spitting Caves” but don’t even THINK about jumping in! A stunning location for fishing, whale watching, photographing and meditating but do not be deceived, the danger on these steep cliffs is very real. Swimming/Cliff Jumping here should never be an option. Mother Nature has taken many of the unwary before there time because they thought they could concur the challenge. The pounding surf is treacherous and the cliffs are very high. Use care in your footing and don’t take your hands off your gear. Even finding the short but dangerously, steep trail head can be a bit tricky. It is located in a residential area and in can be slippery when dry, due to tons of dead pine needles on the trail but even worse when wet. Should that be the case I wouldn’t hesitate to be “that lady with the crampons” on this one, my pride be damned. Oooh but what a treat when you get to the bottom! The multi-layered rocks, worn down by the forces of sea and wind, are full of grooves and swirls that make stunning shapes and patterns.  There is no doubt that the sunsets along side of Diamond Head Crater will surely entice this girl into more than one trek down that crazy-steep trail head this time around.
Pat Corlin Photography
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#Sunset #SpittingCaves #Oahu #Hawaii #Oceanscape #Dusk #Landscape #SeaScape #PacificOcean #Ocean #Pacific #HawaiianIslands #Cliffs #Nikon #Formatt-Hitech

“At The End Of The Day, We Get What We Are Given”

“At The End Of The Day, We Get What We Are Given”

“At The End Of The Day, We Get What We Are Given”

Be it by Fate, Kismet, Karma, Mother Nature or the Universe, “At The End Of The Day, We Get What We Are Given.” It is up to we, the individuals, to decide to receive and celebrate them openly or turn from the gifts that are given freely by any of the multitude of “Higher Powers” that are believed in.

Yes, it is true. I had a freak and rather undignified accident that cut short my dream photography workshop on the Big Island with and and small circle of new friends. But the truth of it is, I hurt so bad that I knew, without a doubt, there was no continuing on the original track that I had so carefully planned. Instead, I found my way back to Oahu and was gifted with an additional, and somewhat painful ( I use the term lightly) week living with my daughter, in the Land of Far, Far Away! The tables had turned and it was she, taking care of me for the first time in our thirty years together. Much gratitude is extended to my Meagan who seemed to have a perfect mixture of endless patience and a stern (picture Nurse Ratchet 😉 yet respectful delivery of all doctors orders!

And yet, at the end of my last day with her, my son-in-law and the generous roomies, I felt sad that my “extended” stay was coming to an end. While finishing packing my bags, I looked out the back slider at the “muted” skies of early dusk, starting to feel a bit sorry for myself that I did not get to capture my “imagined spectacular” sunset on the Big Island. Disappointment was spreading in my heart that fate had taken that opportunity from me, and I turned away from the water, admittedly pouting. Not fifteen minutes later, Meagan calls from the back yard … “MOM, OMG, come QUICK!” And there, before our eyes, was THE most spectacular sunset! The one I “almost missed because I had impatiently chosen to turn away. I hobbled back in the house, grabbed the camera, lens be what it may, and limped down my first flight of stairs in a week and a half to throw myself on my belly on the dock. And there I had the honor of capturing “What I Was Given.” Once again filled with joy and grateful; for the many gifts given to me from “The Powers That Be.”

2014 Pat Corlin Photography
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#NeverSayDie #ColbyBrownWorkshop #Sunset #Gratitude #ColbyBrownWorkshop #Hawaii #WeGetWhatWereGiven