Monday, December 20, 2010

Winner of The El Barrio Today Photo Contest: Cuchifrito!

Winner of The El Barrio Today Photo Contest: Cuchifrito!
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

December 20, 2010, New York City:

Saturday night I had the wonderful experience of attending El Super Sabado at El Museo del Barrio with my family and our friends, a few walking blocks from where we live at the top of Museum Mile in Manhattan. It proved to be a very special evening, because, to my great surprise, my photograph was awarded third prize for the El Barrio Today photo contest.

The honor was quite ironic, because at first we almost did not get into the celebration, as they were filled to capacity and were not allowing anyone else in to the museum.

In addition to the photo contest, El Museo del Barrio was co-hosting the 9th Annual Best Coquito contest with The International Coquito Federation. Coquito is a Puerto Rican holiday tradition, a yummy and creamy tropical coconut eggnog made with spices and white rum. The public was invited to taste the recipes of the ten winners of the month-long Coquito Master Qualifier Series 2010, and asked to vote for the best Coquito. The winners would be announced on stage along with the photography winners. All the attendees who made it into the museum, were treated to entertainment by comedian Victor Cruz and music by El Trío New York.

I knew of the celebration because I had been informed that I was one of the 25 semi-finalists out of 500 entrees, and thus I had been invited to attend. We were also promised reserved seating during the show and award announcements.

Thus, when we arrived, I told them I was one of the “photographers.” Big mistake, because the lady at the door adamantly told us, “Sorry, no more people will be allowed in.” I was both confused and surprised. “But I’m on the list,” I told her, “I’m one of the ‘photographers.’” Alas, she did not budge.

I then began citing the names of the people that invited me and I even pulled the press card on her. Nothing worked.

Eventually, Ines, who was better informed, came to our rescue and they let us in. Apparently, they thought that I was only la prensa, the press, not realizing I was also a semi-finalist.

Ultimately, we got our preferred seating.

And although I thoroughly enjoyed the comedy and the music, by the time the music began, the five kids we had amongst us, were getting restless, bored and hungry. Thus, I suggested that we leave after “the next song,” fully believing that my photo had no chance of winning.

However, while we were looking at the photos on display right before our departure, Ines came running up to me and said with a distraught look on her face, “¿A donde vas? Where are you going?” “Home,” I answered, explaining, “Tienen aburido, the kids are bored.”

She then responded, practically pleading, “But you won third place!” “Really?” I responded in utter amazement. “Yes,” she said, adding, “So, you have to stay.”

Everyone was happy for me and we agreed to stay for the winners’ ceremony.

Here is the original photo: Cuchifrito!

Cuchifritos (koo-chee-free-tohs) refers to various fried foods prepared principally of pork, in Puerto Rican cuisine. They include a variety of dishes including but not limited to morcilla (blood sausage), papas rellenas (fried potato balls stuffed with meat), chicharron (fried pork skin), and various other parts of the pig prepared in different ways. The term originally referred to small, fried parts of a pig. It derives its name from the word "cuchí" short for "cochino" or pig and "frito" which describes something that is fried. "Cuchifritos" may also be used to refer to restaurants that serve this type of food.

In New York City, vendors advertising cuchifritos are particularly notable because they tend to make use of colorful external lighting and big flashy signs that quickly catch the eyes of passersby. These establishments have dotted the Puerto Rican and Dominican areas of New York City for the past fifty years, particularly Hamilton Heights, Washington Heights, South Bronx, Brooklyn, and other primarily Puerto Rican and Dominican neighborhoods. (Source: Wikipedia: Cuchifritos)

About El Museo:
El Museo del Barrio is New York’s premier Latino cultural institution, representing the diversity of art and culture of the Caribbean and Latin America. As one of the leading Latino museums in the nation, El Museo is a major stop on Manhattan’s Museum Mile as well as a cornerstone of El Barrio, the Spanish-speaking neighborhood of East Harlem.



The #1 Bestselling Photo Essay & Artist Biography in 2010 on Amazon, 25 Lessons I’ve Learned about Photography...Life!, is now available with 25 Spectacular New York City street photos. It is the perfect holiday gift for your favorite photographer, aspiring artist, job seeker, soul searcher or anyone who just needs a little inspiration.


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"I don't think I've ever read as moving a piece on the craft of photography in my life. Most pieces on photography are more tech manual in approach, this one really touches my's going to really impact my life." Phyllis Johnson, photojournalist and author of Being Frank with Anne

"We received our copies of 25 Lessons today and began reading it as a class - it is truly amazing." Paul Scott, Head of Photography, St. Boniface's Catholic College in Plymouth, UK

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Thursday, December 2, 2010


Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

December 1, 2010, New York City:

Last night we came across on advertisement on the bank site. Lo and behold, to my great surprise, it had a photo of my oldest son Enzo, which I sell via Getty Images.

This is a screenshot of the ad. Click here to see the original photo, taken almost exactly 7 years ago on November 29, 2003.

I thought it was cool and very funny, and so I wanted to share it with my friends and readers.

Happy Holidays,

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Matter of Perspective: A Review of 25 Lessons

A Matter of Perspective: A Review of 25 Lessons
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

A Matter of Perspective
November 14, 2010, Sydney, Australia:

Phillip Kay, author of "The Far-Famed Blue Mountains of Harry Phillips" (Second Back Row Press, Leura 1985), which revived the reputation of a famous but forgotten photographer, recently gave a favorable review of my book, 25 Lessons I’ve Learned about Photography Life! on BestQuest. An excerpt follows.

“Because his photography was part of his healing process, Lorenzo learnt to see photography as a metaphor. If what you see causes you pain, you can move, adopt another viewpoint, another perspective. Happiness is mobility, flexibility. There is a perspective for everyone where what they see brings contentment and fulfillment. They just have to keep moving until they find it. There is a point of view we can all seek out. From it we can view the beauty inherent in all things.”
Read the full review


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Friday, October 29, 2010

Microsoft Launches Foursquare Photography App!

Microsoft Launches Foursquare Photography App!
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

October 29, 2010, New York City, Seattle & San Francisco:

Microsoft released its new photography app on 4square today, for which I served as their NYC photography adviser.

From their site: "To bring you the best photos, we toured the country and got to spend time with some amazingly gifted photographers...We teamed up with great, local photography experts who really know their way around these cities and their best spots."

Click on the this link to read more!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Conversation with Graciela Iturbide and Martín Weber

A Conversation with Graciela Iturbide and Martín Weber
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

Photo: 1979 Nuestra Señora de las Iguanas Juchitán, México, © Graciela Iturbide

A Conversation with 2011 Lucie Award Winner Graciela Iturbide and Martín Weber
by Lorenzo Domínguez

(Originally published by En Foco, October 27, 2010)

On Sunday, October 24th, Graciela Iturbide and Martín Weber spoke before an attentive audience at the annual Nueva Luz Artist Talk co-sponsored by En Foco and Lucie Foundation, as part of the week long festivities leading up to the Lucie Awards.

Graciela Iturbide

Many of her fans had come out to listen to this iconic photographer speak about her work, both present and past. Included amongst her admirers was Amber Terranova, photo editor at Photo District News (PDN) who enthusiastically relayed, “(Graciela) is one of my favorite photographers. Her images resonate with me because of the way she captures the spirit of a place and a culture. Also, she’s visually provocative and quite prolific.” To show the extent of her admiration she had brought along two of Iturbide’s books with her, hoping Ms. Iturbide would sign them.

Born in 1942 in Mexico, Graciela was the oldest of 13 children. She turned to photography to grapple with the death of her six-year-old daughter in 1960 and under the mentorship of teacher, cinematographer and photographer Manuel Álvarez Bravo, she eventually learned the craft that would bring her much acclaim as an artist.

Dismissing the notion that she must keep up with the times, Iturbide only photographs with film, most of her work is in black and white, and she is best known for her focus on the marvels of everyday life. In addition to more than 60 exhibitions of her work around the world, she has also been the recipient of prestigious awards including the Eugene Smith Grant in Humanistic Photography in 1987, a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship in 1988, the Hasselblad Award in 2008, and on Wednesday she will receive an award for Achievement in Fine Arts from Lucie Foundation.

Her photos of everyday life often showcase fascinating images such as her photo Mujer Ángel (Angel Woman) featuring a rural peasant climbing a mountainside with a boombox in her hand, or perhaps her best known picture— Nuestra Señora de Las Iguanas (Our Lady of the Iguanas)—which shows a woman with bushel of hair made entirely of a dozen dead iguanas to be sold as meat in the market.*

To her dismay, the significance of this particular photograph is wholly usurped by the bizarre image itself, for the photo was part of an important series about the Zapotec women of Juchitán, Oaxaca, a city where women dominate village life, as well as rule over the marketplace. Moreover, taken during several trips to the area between 1979 and 1988, this series established her stature as a strong supporter of feminism.

Nonetheless, it is this photo that helped Iturbide make her mark, to the point where the locals in Juchitán adopted it as their own, many of them putting up posters of the photo in their homes and eventually renaming the image “The Juchitán Medusa.” In 2008, the stature of this photo prompted the Smithsonian Magazine to publish a story about it and how it became so well-known—Day of the Iguanas.

Iturbide explains, “The camera is an excuse to share the life of the people, the rhythm and simplicity of festivities, to discover my country. While using my camera I am, above all, an actress participating in the scene taking place at the moment, and the other actors know what role I play. I never think of my images as a project, I simply live the situations and photograph them; it is afterwards that I discover the images.”

Martín Weber

Despite Graciela’s stature as an artist, it was her co-presenter, Martín Weber, and his work, A Map of Latin American Dreams, that truly stole the show for the evening.

Made over a period of 15 years, his series of black-and-white photographs show primarily impoverished people from countries throughout Latin America including Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua, and Peru, with an individual—sometimes alone, sometimes in the middle of a group—holding a small black chalkboard upon which he or she has written a dream.

Martin explains, “Sharing their stories, these dreamers restore our awareness of individual and collective experience. In a globalized world, dreams are often reduced to commodity status. Countries and continents are frequently exploited as mere sources of trade. The histories of our communities can be made visible…Our destiny will change when we allow ourselves to imagine differently from what we were given.”

Some of the more moving dreams and photographs include:
- Mi hermano sueña con estudiar música (My brother dreams of studying music)
- Mi sueño es morirme (My dream is to die)
- Ser abogada (To be a lawyer)

Every one of the subjects is markedly somber; almost none reveal a smile, apart from a naïve child here and there. One almost immediately gets the impression that folks throughout Latin American are depressed. That said, Weber’s pictures do have a purpose. His photos, tell how unemployment in Latin America is driving the middle class into poverty, and that the disparity between the rich and the poor is continually expanding, creating a pattern of cycles that abet further social fragmentation, political violence and economic instability.

The Talk

The talk began with an introduction of Elizabeth Ferrer, a curator and writer who is also an authority on Mexican and Latin American photography, by Miriam Romais, Executive Director of En Foco.

Elizabeth began by introducing Martín who read and translated the wishes conveyed by each individual in his photographs.

Since it was suggested that questions from the audience be deferred to the end, Martín deferred any further comments about his work to allow the headliner to take the stage.

Instead of simply showing her photographs though, Graciela began by speaking about how and why she started taking photographs. Through an interpreter she conveyed to the audience that she felt photography allowed her to know her country, Mexico, in a way that she would not otherwise. She also mentioned that she loved taking photos of objects throughout the world and that “in all landscapes and objects, one can feel a human presence.”

She also mentioned that her most recent work is focusing on “el mundo fantasia,” the world of fantasy as inspired by her nietos. To do so, she had to retreat to her archives to find images that would appeal to the imaginations of her grandchildren.

Since Graciela seemingly preferred to discuss her work, rather than merely show it, the audience was allowed to ask her questions before the official Q&A had begun for both speakers.

Asked what prompted her to go to India to take photographs, Iturbide immediately and repeatedly gave Mary Ellen Mark, who was in the audience, credit for her inspiration to travel there. “Mary Ellen said ‘I had to go.’”

When asked what is the significance of birds in her imagery, she answered with a sincere smile, “I don’t know,” arousing a bit of laughter from everyone. She went on to explain, “I never know why I take photos. I suppose it is simply intuition. For example, in my photo Ojos para volar (Eyes to Fly With), I have one live bird and one dead bird over my eyes. It was simply something that I intuitively and spontaneously decided to do. I suppose that I simply have an obsession with the flight of birds.”

Cat Jimenez, Executive Director of the Lucie Foundation, asked Graciela about her Asor series, to which she went on to describe a little about each photo shown—a floating body during a Mexican ritual, a construction site which she referred to as “iron gardens,” and a carnival in the distance over an arid landscape somewhere in Texas. Ultimately, she said that, once again, it was about “intuition” and it was difficult to explain.

Graciela went on to speak about her photo series of Frida Kahlo’s bathroom, which she was invited to photograph 15 years after it had been closed by Frida’s husband, the muralist and painter Diego Rivera. She elaborated, “We had discovered that it had been closed for fifty years, not fifteen, as Diego had claimed. Ultimately, I ended up taking photos of objects that revealed Frida Kahlo’s pain”—a prosthetic leg, a poster of Stalin, crutches, back braces, and corsets.

She ended her talk by declaring, “I don’t want to be the photographer known only for her ‘The Lady of Iguanas’ photo anymore. In fact, they are now making a sculpture of that iconic picture. I think it will be horrible.”

Audience Q&A

The official Q&A from the audience began with a question for both photographers:

What is your dream?

Graciela answered, “Quiero Soñar,” I want to dream.

And Martín, almost sadly, said, “To be with my family.”

Weber was then asked, “In group photos how did you choose the individual?”

He immediately responded, almost shyly, “Mostly it was my intuition.”

Also posed to Weber, “How do you approach your subjects, to garner their honesty?”

Martín answered, “My work is based on trust; there is something very powerful with photography. I sought to create spaces where they were willing to share something. Surprisingly to me, 99% of them said ‘Yes.’”

Asked to Iturbide, “What is most similar between Mexican and Indian culture?”

“Their rituals about death. The yellow flowers, the marigolds, that they both place over the dead.” After further thought, she further added, “Actually, they are not similar. They are different cultures,” and deferred further explanation to Mary Ellen Mark, who has also worked in both places.

Both photographers were asked “What kind of richness would you like your work to reveal to viewers, especially to those ‘outside’ of Latin American culture?”

Iturbide responded, “I think that the fact that we were all colonized by either the Spanish or the Portuguese gives us a common history. We all have beautiful pueblos (communities). Yet, so many have to migrate to the United States, because the one thing a lot of us do not have are—jobs. This is why we suffer so much adversity, there is no work in Latin America. I’ve worked with immigrants before and it vexes my soul.”

“Moreover, despite this problem and others like drug trafficking, the people, our villages, are marvelous. This is why I like to photograph the dignity of these pueblos.”

The talk officially ended when Cat Jimenez asked the final question of Graciela, “Why don’t you use digital photography?”

“I don’t like it,” she candidly answered, explaining, “As per the title of a short film I did with Alejandro Gómez de Tuddo, Hay tiempo, hay tiempo (There is time, there is time). I want to have time to take and develop my photos. Film allows, and even forces, you to take time with your work.”

Graciela Iturbide will be presented with the Achievement in Fine Art award at the Eighth Annual Lucie Awards to be held on Wednesday, October 25 at Lincoln Center in New York.
An exhibit of Martín Weber’s work, along with that of photographer Joseph Rodriguez, titled Cultural Memory Matters, is now showing at 601Artspace in Chelsea. The show runs through March 12, 2011.

* This image is featured in a poster for En Foco’s 1991 Intercambio program, in Puerto Rico. Graciela’s work was also featured in En Foco’s 1988 exhibition, Latina.

For More Information
Martín Weber on En Foco
Print Collectors Program: Martín Weber

Graciela Iturbide on En Foco


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Friday, October 22, 2010

Another painting by Claudio Filippini

Another painting by Claudio Filippini
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

Italian Painter Claudio Filippini Inspired by Another Photo by NYC Street Photographer Lorenzo Dominguez

October 22, 2010, New York City:

A special thanks to Italian painter Claudio Filippini, who just informed me that he has finished two more paintings inspired by my photos, both come from my series, The March of the Shadows: 1. Marching in NY 002, and 2. Marching in NY 159.

They are now one of the featured works on his website.

The first painting he created was inspired by my photo, This Is New York!, which he finished in October of 2008.

And the second, recently finished in May of this year, was inspired by my photo, the most beautiful day of the year.

You Lookin' at Me? was finished in September and is one of the featured works on his website. See painting here on flickr.

Please check out Claudio's work at

Mille Grazie,

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Saturday, October 16, 2010

No beginning, middle, or end: a journey through the art world with Savannah

No beginning, middle, or end: a journey through the art world with Savannah
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

© 2010, Paintings of Home, Bo Bartlett

No beginning, middle, or end: a journey through the art world with Savannah
(Originally published by The Examiner, October 15, 2010)

Popular Culture, Comics & Cartoons

“I’m telling a story with no beginning, middle, or end, one that is hard to tell in words,” pseudo-excitedly explained Jason Limon to three fans that were surrounding him, three middle-aged men who seemingly had closely been following his evolution as an artist.

“Are you still doing your electrical-battery work?” anxiously intoned one of them to the boyish-looking Limon.

Limon replied with a surprised look in his eye, “I still do them, but not as much. People were into the robots and electrical pieces, but I’ve moved on because I want to tell a story that takes shape over time, filing in the gaps with every new painting that is completed.”

This ambiguous, open-to-wide-interpretation explanation is abetted by the artist statement he has posted to his website, one which reminds me of some of the lighter, high-flying moments I’ve had with my friends:

"I am an observer of our world, silently scanning its elements and the beings who move among them. My mind absorbs and overflows with thoughts and emotions with no way to be revealed but through marks on a blank surface. There is a curious young soul within me that begs to show its existence. My mind drifts to far of places in hopes of returning with fragments of memories and dreams to share with others. I create so that I may speak. With every image released I step further away from the shadows of my past and into the bright lights of a happier place."

His work consists of a fantastic ensemble of “masks,” as he calls them, hiding giant insect-like-aliens, or at least the heads of them, because almost all his figures all body-less. The paintings are all reminiscent of a surreal genre of work that is headlined by established stars like Todd Schorr, who have been influenced by strange images drawn from popular culture, comics and cartoons.

Collectively, artists like Schorr and Limon, have driven a movement known as lowbrow artor pop surrealism. Limon’s work was recently previewed in Juxtapoz, a magazine which was has been at the helm of the movement since 1994.

It’s Now or Never
This run in with Jason at the opening of his show, Blood Nectar, at the BOLD HYPE Gallery, was just the first stop on my tour through New York City’s premier art gallery district, Chelsea, with my partner in crime for the evening, Savannah Spirit.

Savannah is a photographer, curator, blogger, all-around cool art chick and someone who likes to profess her love for New York City (most of the time). Hanging around her for an evening, one immediately gets the impression that she is a connoisseur of the art world, she knows whats-what and whos-who, and admittedly has made many of her connections first online.

We talked about the "it's who you know" principle, and she said, "Actually, I feel like I've truly just begun my journey through the art world. There is so much to absorb, so much to know about art and the people who make it happen. Often, I feel like the eternal student, always learning. For now, I'm just sponging it all in. Moreover, I also feel as if I'm part of something bigger, contributing to the larger picture. My role keeps slowly revealing itself."

“And it’s amazing how many people you can meet in the art world via Facebook,” she added, unapologetically .

In fact, while we were at Noah Becker’sSix Degrees of Separation show at Claire Oliver last night, a number of people approached us who recognized Savannah from their conversations over the Internet.
One of them was Dawn Hunter, professor of art at the University of South Carolina, who was in town for a long weekend with her husband. After all the handshakes and introductions, we got to talking about Work of Art, a reality-TV show on Bravo that promises to find “the next great artist.” We discussed important questions as to whether or not Jerry Saltz, art critic for New York Magazine, was “selling out,”(read his defense here) and whether or not we would be willing to be a judge or contestant if they didn’t pay us.

Having actually experienced this dilemma when I was asked to be the lead artist for the HP Be Brilliant campaign a couple of years ago, I weighed in. “Sometimes, you’ve just got to give it up for free. Ultimately, the promotional value you get is worth a lot more than the standard professional compensation everybody cries about. I whined too when they first told me that I would ‘not be paid’ for my work, but then my ex straightened me out—‘Your ego is getting in the way of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.’ She was right, so I groveled back to strike my Faustian bargain.”

We also met the painter CJ Nye, who much like Savannah, has found that Facebook is a great conduit for fomenting relationships in the art community. Moreover, CJ would later reveal that one of the reasons that she picked up art again, ten years after a tragic accident in which she lost the use of her painting hand, was that Jerry Saltz had praised her work while taking an extracurricular painting class while getting her MA in Arts Administration.

As we were exiting the exhibition we ran into the curator of the show, Noah Becker, who seemed both exuberant and somewhat haggard by all the balls he’s been juggling lately as curator, painter, writer, critic and magazine editor of online art zine, Whitehot Magazine. Although the introduction was short and sweet, we agreed to continue to our conversation later (click here to read A Talk with Noah).

In addition to many of Savannah’s Facebook friends, we had conversations with a couple of the artists that Savannah knows through her latest project as a photographer. With the working title of “Shoot Me: The New York Art World in the 21st Century,” Savannah is attempting to capture the zeitgeist of the contemporary art world in two ways. First, by taking portraits of New York based artists, in a way that reveals who they are outside of their creative medium. And secondly, by documenting the art scene, through pictures of events and openings.

Ultimately, both of these perpectivies will be used in the book and exhibition that will showcase this project. She's currently working with Bruce Checefsky, Director of the Reinberger Galleries at the Cleveland Institute of Art, who will serve as the photo editor for the book and curator of the exhibition.
So far, she’s shot seven artists including Augustus Goertz, Gregory de la Haba, Jazz-Minh Moore, Grace Roselli, Michael Anderson, Lowell Boyers, and Will Ryman.

She exuberantly explained to me, “This project will serve to create a historical portrait of where we are in the contemporary art scene today. At the same time it will give the artists I photograph a chance to show us who they really are as individuals apart from what the public can garner from their work.”

“Moreover, the type of ‘camera’ I’ve chosen to use for the project is 'The Hipstamatic,' an app you can buy for your iPhone that allows you to take photos in various cool modes that mimic different kinds of analog film. I’m using this intentionally because it draws attention to the nature of an ‘instant’ age we live in, one where no one wants to wait for anything anymore. Everyone wants it now or never.”

Continuing the Legacy
Our final stop was at the P×P×O×W Gallery, which was hosting the opening of Bo Bartlett’s tenth solo exhibition, Paintings of Home, depicting “scenes from his childhood home in Columbus, Georgia.” To set the mood, the reception featured a trio performing bluegrass music.

Even though the press release claims that as a painter he is “continuing the legacy” of American Realists such as Eakin, Homer and Wyeth, many of the paintings were highly reminiscent of Norman Rockwell.

Moreover, although Bartlet graduated from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, which emphasized the mastery of realist principles, there are quaint references in his work to his training in film at NYU, with images of movie cameras sprinkled throughout the series and many of the paintings, both past and present, resembling scenes from a movie (e.g. Car Crash, Homeland, The Bride, and Return of the Three Graces from Exile).

And as per his artist statement it is clear that Bo renders from a cinematic point of view, “(My) paintings celebrate the underlying epic nature of the commonplace and the personal significance of the extraordinary. Family and friends are the cast of characters that appear in his dreamlike narrative works.”

Overall, PPOW’s show brings together an impressive ensemble of Bartlett’s work, an exemplary example of the mastery of painting that inspires many aspiring artists today.

Blood Nectar will run from October 14 until November 11. The Bold Hype Gallery is located at 547 W. 27th Street, 5th Floor.

Six Degrees of Separation runs from October 14 thru November 13. Claire Oliver is located at 513 W 26th Street.

Paintings of Home runs from October 14 until November 13. P×P×O×W is located at 511 W 25th Street, Room 301.

Read more articles and interviews by Lorenzo like these at the

Fine Art Photography in New York City

National Fine Arts

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Monday, September 27, 2010

Homage to the Empire State

Homage to the Empire State
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

Yesterday, I had the great opportunity to trek all over the city in search for the best places to shoot great street and landscape photography with a representative of a major tech company that is launching a new location-based photo app soon in three cities including NYC, Seattle and San Francisco and they asked me to be the lead photography adviser for our great city.

Thus, all day yesterday, from 7 AM until 8 PM, we traversed as much of this magnificent metropolis as was possible before our soles ached and our memory cards were overflowing with pictures that prove that New York City is the absolute best pace for photography in the world.

If you are interested, I posted map of many of the spots we hit: Lorenzo’s List of the Top 25 Hot Spots for Photography in New York City.

Happy Photo Trekking,

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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

You Lookin' at Me?

You Lookin' at Me? Diptych
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

Italian Painter Claudio Filippini Inspired by Another Photo by NYC Street Photographer Lorenzo Dominguez

September 15, 2010, New York City:

A special thanks to Italian painter Claudio Filippini, who just informed me that he has finished another painting inspired by one of my photos, You Lookin' at Me?. It is now one of the featured works on his website.

Here, in this image, I've created a diptych of his rendition and my original photograph.

The first painting he created was inspired by my photo, This Is New York!, which he finished in October of 2008.

And the second, recently finished in May of this year, was inspired by my photo, the most beautiful day of the year.

Please check out Claudio's work at

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

World Renowned Painter Claudio Filippini Inspired by Another Lorenzodom NYC Street Photo

World Renowned Painter Claudio Filippini Inspired by Another Lorenzodom NYC Street Photo
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

A special thanks to Italian painter Claudio Filippini, who just informed me that he has finished another painting inspired by one of my photos, the most beautiful day of the year. It is now the featured work on the homepage of his website.

The first painting he created was inspired by my photo, This Is New York!, which he finished in October of 2008.

Please check out Claudio's work at

Mille Grazie,

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Understanding Human Nature Through Movement: An Interview with Tango Photographer Adriana Groisman

Understanding Human Nature Through Movement: An Interview with Tango Photographer Adriana Groisman
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

© Adriana Groisman, Osvaldo & Lorena, La Ideal, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Tango, Never Before Midnight series.

(Originally published by En Foco, May 13)

In 2002, Academy award winner Robert Duvall wrote, directed and starred in Assassination Tango, a feature film which follows an assassin who gets caught up in the world of the milongueros–those who frequent the nocturnal dance halls of Argentina. Duvall created this film in honor of a longtime obsession of his – dancing tango with his girlfriend in Buenos Aires.

A year after his film was released, Duvall explained his passion to correspondent Charlie Rose, “It gets in your blood in a quiet way, kind of a sweet thing that sits there. He’s leading, he’s telling her what to do, but she embellishes. But in our politically correct world, up in the United States, they call it the leader and the follower. Down here, they call it the man and the woman. Ha ha.”

Duvall conceded that despite years of dancing it was not easy to make the film, because “You just can’t take a crash course to be a tango dancer in a movie.”
Photographer Adriana Groisman would likely tell you much the same, you can’t just go into a dance hall and start taking pictures, at least not if you wish to capture the subtleties that make this pastime so intriguing to so many who have likewise fallen in love with the dance.

Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Groisman has been a photojournalist since 1985, with work appearing in major publications in the USA and abroad. She has been taking photos of the milongueros for over 15 years, and her sophisticated understanding of the people, the culture and the rich meaning in each turn, every pause and all the subtle gestures exchanged between the dancers is clearly visible in her work.

I had a chance to catch up with Adriana at her recent opening to her En Foco Touring Gallery exhibition: Tango, Never Before Midnight (on view through June 21, 2010). Our discussion follows.

Do you remember the first time you used a camera and when you wanted to become a photographer in earnest?

I remember that my father gave me a Kodak Fiesta when I was six years old. However, I did not begin to take photography seriously until I decided to become a photojournalist.

My first real job was as a physical education teacher during the military dictatorships that marred our country from 1976 until 1983. In Argentina it is often known simply as la última junta militar (the last military junta) or la última dictadura (the last dictatorship), because several of them had existed throughout our history.

Initially, I loved being involved in athletics, especially because it endowed one with a great sense of confidence, one that made you believe that no one could repress you.

Alas, reality set in for me and I was disenchanted after having to teach high school students how to march. I did it for three years and then decided that I had enough. At the same time that I was teaching, I was working with abused children and I used to take photos of them while helping out.

Moreover, despite my disheartening experience at work, I loved sports, especially gymnastics. So when Nadia Comăneci , who many consider the greatest gymnast of all time (winner of three Olympic gold medals at the 1976 Summer Olympics, the first gymnast ever to be awarded a perfect score of 10 in an Olympic gymnastic event, and the winner of two gold medals at the 1980 Summer Olympics) came to Buenos Aires in the early eighties, a friend of mine asked me to take pictures of her. It was then that I realized that I loved photography and I particularly loved capturing the grace and grandeur of movement.

A friend of mine who was a photographer in New York at the time knew of my aspirations and encouraged me to make the big move to the Big Apple. He said if I wanted to become a serious photographer, New York City was the place to do it. I arrived in October of 1983, and, based on his advice, I took courses at ICP (the International Center for Photography).

My first job was for an Argentine Magazine, La Semana. I vividly recall my very terrifying first assignment —to interview a criminal. He slammed the door on us.

Things got a lot better though and I quickly fell in love with the myriad interviews of journalists, authors, actors, politicians and others I was assigned to do. An interview, if it is performed well, gives you a level of insight and intimacy that has always fascinated me.

Do you remember the first time you wanted to focus on the life and culture of Tango?

I have long been attracted to documenting sub- or underground cultures. Before I began my Tango project I had spent a substantial amount of time, effort and emotion on a long-term project about the life of transvestites.

I had developed a number of good relationships with my subjects, but then had a falling out after a few heart-breaking experiences. Thus, as devastated as I was, I decided that I couldn’t pursue that project anymore. My saving grace was my next long-term project, the life of the milongueros, the regulars at the Argentinean Tango dance halls, who I would also consider a subculture.

That said, I do not regret my time with the transvestites. Because, much like the Milongueros, I have found that both groups are rather wise about people. It is a bit difficult to express in words and through my photographs even, but the more experienced dancers tell me that they can tell a lot about a person simply by how they embrace you while dancing. Having spent so much time with them, I can fully attest to their deeper understanding of human nature.

Moreover, both of these projects have taught me that it is vital to judge people a lot less, and to be much more accepting of others’ idiosyncrasies, quirks and penchants.

Can you tell us more about your exhibition—Tango, Never Before Midnight.

The show is a work which records the world of the milongas –traditional Argentinean tango balls– and their patrons, the milongueros. Each night at the milonga is a dramatic cycle in itself, an erotically charged arena where issues of power and gender are played out. Fleeting relationships, alliances, rivalries, jealousies and games of seduction occur, leading to the encounters on the dance floor. These negotiations are carried out through furtive glances and minute gestures, parts of a ritual that can go completely unnoticed by outsiders.

Milongueros tend to speak very little; even if they have been dancing with each other for years they never ask each other’s last names, addresses or professions. This is one of the unspoken rules of the “real” milongueros. Another implicit rule is that the invitation to dance is never verbal. Rather, this is done through a complex series of interlocking gazes and body attitudes.

At the milonga, a great social equalizer, class, age and physical appearance recede. The dancing is what counts, the body connection, the feeling for the music.

In many of your Tango photos there is more black than white, more dark than light, seemingly leaving more to be said than to be seen. What are your thoughts on this mode of seeing this world?

Yes, Tango is about the mystery of life. It is a very suggestive art, a rather subtle dance, which to the untrained eye may appear as if nothing is happening, but in reality everything is happening. It is a game of both containment and surrender. An experience that reaches deep, but on the surface remains so subtle.

This is the magic of magic of Tango and what I have tried to capture in my photos for 15 years.


Tango, Never Before Midnight, is an En Foco Touring Gallery exhibition at Pregones Theatre from May 1 – June 21, 2010.

Adriana Groisman will be giving an artist talk at the theater on Saturday, May 15 from 1:00 to 2:00 pm. The event is free and open to the public.

Pregones Theatre
571 – 575 Walton Avenue @ 149th Street
Bronx, NY 10451 718-585-1202

For More Information

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Breaking Bread with Mi Raza: an interview with Mexican photographer Rojelio Reyes Rodriguez

Breaking Bread with Mi Raza: an interview with Mexican photographer Rojelio Reyes Rodriguez
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

(Photo by Rojelio Reyes Rodriguez. During his most recent visit to México, Rojelio came across these two women who were considered important figures in their towns, because both are "healers.")

A little over a year ago, En Foco hosted a solo exhibition of Rojelio Reyes Rodriguez’s work Mi Sangre at the Pregones Theater in the Bronx.

(see Infusing Life Through Art: Mi Sangre, a photography exhibition by Rojelio Reyes Rodriguez)

At the beginning of March, I had chance to revisit with Rojelio and ask him about progress with his work, his life and his love of Mexican culture. Following are excerpts from our interview.

Miriam Romais, Executive Director of En Foco, recently told me that you returned to México to create new work for the series, and En Foco just added you as their new Print Collectors Program artist. Tell us a little about your trip.

Sometime in July, I had a chance to meet with Aperture’s executive director, Juan Garcia De Oteyza, to show him my Mexican body of work. He commented on how strong it was and felt that it was one of most cohesive series he's seen in a while.

Additionally, he's agreed to co-publish this body of work and was adamant that this book would be a huge success, especially since it would coincide with the 200th Anniversary of México's Independence in 2010.

Inspired by the meeting, I went back to México to see if I could find a little bit more "magic" to add to the book project. I did.

That said, I have to mention that I have made many trips to México since I began this project in 2004. It has been more spiritual and educational than I ever thought it would be. Each trip has recharged my mind, my heart, and my appreciation of the sacrifices my parents and their parents have made.

I feel that I grew up a average and ignorant American kid who took his heritage for granted. Thus, as an adult, I’ve felt compelled to dig up my roots in order to begin understanding the magic underlying my cherished childhood memories.

Thus, with each trip, I have educated myself about my Mexican heritage just a little more. Because as a parent and a professional photographer, I feel that it is my responsibility to go beyond capturing what was and is important to me, and what cumulatively makes me "who I am." Because, now, I have the responsibility to my children, a responsibility to educate them as I educate myself about "where I came from," and thus, where they came from as well.

Tell us more about the “magic.” What was enchanting about your trip?

The "magic" I keep referring to is the element of "mi raza." The smells, the laughter I share with those I meet, the acceptance, the vigor in allowing me to photograph them, so on. It's kind of hard for me to put in words exactly, but it's almost like you’re daring yourself to find those images that will validate the effort in getting there and starting from scratch.

Do you have any stories you can share about “mi raza,” the people, you met on your trip?

I have many. But those that really resonate with me most are the experiences I had with the children and the elders I’ve met. Such innocence, such wonder in their eyes.

I felt duty bound to show the children that there is a whole world out there waiting for them. I relayed my experience as a photographer to them, so that they understood that I was no different from them and that they to could create their own opportunities for success through commitment and persistence.

With the old folks, I marveled at their stories. Most of them were 90 to 106, so you can only imagine what they've been through. I was most surprised to hear that many had had not travelled beyond the borders of their towns. They often told me that they had everything they needed or wanted at home, so why bother going anywhere else? Good point, I thought.

What did you try to capture the most of? Were you looking for more of the same or something different this time?

What I was looking for was the elements that triggered my memories as a child: la tierra (the land), la gente (the people), and food (of course!).

Most importantly, I was looking to capture those elements that conveyed the value that Mexican culture places on la familia, the family.

It was treat to often being welcomed into people's home to enjoy a meal with them. This is what I remember most of my childhood visits to México. Here in the States, you don’t “break bread” with your neighbor unless you’re invited or have a "reason" to come into their home. In Mexico, simply because you are part of la raza is often good enough.

Moreover, on each trip I pushed myself to find something vastly different from the previous trip. I simply didn't want to repeat any experiences or visuals.

What have you learned about Mexican culture that you did not understand before you started taking photographs in México?

Being a son of Mexican immigrants, I was doing my thing growing up with the American standards - comic books, hanging out with friends, etc. What else was there for me to "understand"? But as with of us who grew up with family whose culture came from another country, as adults we begin to question who we are and where we came from.

I’ve been fortunate to be able to make this journey back to the land of my forefathers as a photographer, and made a conscious decision to make the time to understand those values, beliefs, struggles, as well as the strong family bonds that transcend the normal "keeping up with the Joneses" that we strive for here in the States.

In México, it was nice to rediscover the familiarity of being welcomed into stranger's homes and break bread with them. It felt good to be so readily accepted as family.

How has the experience of photographing Mexicans in Mexico built a bridge between the cultural experience of being a assimilated Mexican-American and your cultural heritage and native culture of native Mexicans today?

It was genuine. Again, I was amazed on how easily the people that I photographed let me in to their homes and familiar surroundings.

Although I may fall into the category of "an assimilated Mexican-American" involuntarily, I do recognize that there is a huge cultural gap.

When I began traveling to Mexico to take photos, at first, I did feel "foreign.” And I anticipated that I wasn’t going to get further than a handshake. But then, after having identified myself as a fellow "Méxicano," I found that I was actually welcomed and even looked up to, especially after they got to hear my story, where I've been around the world, and the numerous celebrities I have met along the way. I feel that although they may have marveled at my accomplishments, they were most impressed that I am no different than they are and I represent the potential that their kids all have within them.

In other words, it felt as if I was somehow proof that even a "Méxicano" can be as successful in life as anyone else.

After the conversations you’ve had with curators, dealers, and professionals in the photography industry how has your work changed since we last spoke a year ago in March 2008 at your Pregones show?

My appreciation has grown immensely. I've begun to get emails from aspiring photographers around the globe who tell me they are inspired by my work and are now daring themselves to take that leap of faith into being photographers themselves. It is my duty to encourage them to do so.

As for the curators and dealers, they are a different breed. It is their business to make money, of course, so I'm being careful about how I interact with them.

What is it about your work that they like most?

The dedication to create iconic and classic images about something I know - myself, my heritage, mi raza.

Why would I go to, say Germany or Russia and attempt to shoot their culture and attempt to explain what their culture is like? It would be foolish. It would be wrong.

Has a launch date been set for your book?

As of now, Aperture is looking to publish sometime this year, in congruence with the 200th anniversary of México’s independence.

That said, when I met with the editor of Aperture, he stressed that no one is immune to the recession. Thus, to make sure it happens, Aperture has invited another entity to co-publish with them. This is still in the works.

Since there is a much larger market for your work in the Southwest, have you considered moving back to Texas or anywhere in that area?

Many times. But as with all things, I've already set up shop here and started mi familia here in The Big Apple. So, I’ll just travel there when necessary.

Have your children expressed interest in your photography work? If so, how so? Has your family traveled with you to Mexico while you were shooting?

My son Diego definitely has. The other two are too busy discovering their body parts and drinking their milk.

Diego identifies my career, and because its photography, he sees the end product. He sometimes sits on my lap and watches me do some editing, retouching, cleaning the cameras and sometimes joins me on some of the lighter gigs. I'm very fortunate that I'm able to share this with him (as I will with my daughters, when they're older).

I haven't taken them to México on my trips - mainly because it's too chaotic and on the fly. It was all guerrilla style and spontaneous. I was essentially a vagabond with a camera.

In the end, I know I'll find myself sharing these experiences with my wife and kids and I'm looking forward to having them travel with me in the future.

Since we last spoke, it seems you’ve added a new member to your family, please tell us about your new child?

Yes, Elisa Victoria.

It was a very tough pregnancy for all of us.

In early September, during her 24th week, my wife broke water and was rushed to the hospital.

Elisa was born right after the Yankees won the World Series on November 4. She weighed only 3 lbs, 4 ozs. and spent about a month in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) at the hospital. It was a very scary and emotional time for us. My wife stayed a for a couple of weeks after Elisa was born, but Elisa did not get to come home until right before Christmas.

That said, I am proud to mention that while my wife and our new daughter were in the hospital from September until mid-November, I was able to hold the fort at home with our two kids, Diego, who is four and a half, and Alma, who is 15 months old.

This included getting the kids ready for school and daycare, shooting between the hours of their schooling, picking them up, cooking and cleaning, taking them to the hospital to see their Mommy as much as possible, getting them ready for bed, working on the computer till midnight or later, and starting the routine all over again the next day, everyday.

Ultimately, although I was exhausted by the experience, I felt it was well worth the sacrifices, if only because it was for my family.

And despite the struggle, we're happy to announce that the scary bit is over, and our newest addition is a whopping 9 lbs and change now!

For More Information
Rojelio at En Foco

Saturday, February 20, 2010’s #1 Best Selling Photo Essay, 25 Lessons I’ve Learned (about photography) is now available for the BlackBerry’s #1 Best Selling Photo Essay, 25 Lessons I’ve Learned (about photography) is now available for the BlackBerry
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

With the release of a Kindle application for BlackBerry phones today,’s #1 Best Selling Photo Essay, 25 Lessons I’ve Learned (about photography) is now available for the Kindle, iPhone, iPod touch, PC and now BlackBerry. Amazon has also promised to release applications for the and soon, Mac and iPad soon.

The free "Kindle for Blackberry” app lets customers with BlackBerry devices access Kindle books. Users can browse Amazon's catalog, check out the beginning of an e- book before buying it and read books in color.

"Since the launch of our popular Kindle for iPhone app last year, customers have been asking us to bring a similar experience to the BlackBerry, and we are thrilled to make it available today," said Ian Freed, vice president, Amazon Kindle, in a statement today.

Kindle is the most wished for, most gifted and #1 bestselling product on, and customers can now get the Kindle experience on their BlackBerry by downloading the free app at

25 Lessons I’ve Learned (about photography) is #1 bestselling Photo Essay on and is available HERE.

Get the Kindle for iPhone and iPod touch FREE at Apple’s App Store.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Art Against All Odds: An Interview with NYC Photographer Helena de Vengoechea

Art Against All Odds: An Interview with NYC Photographer Helena de Vengoechea
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

(Originally published February 18, 2010 on The Examiner.)

In February 1993, photographer Helena de Vengoechea was 18 years old and was about to start her last semester of high school.

Like many other seniors, Helena had every intention of finishing high school with a flourish.

She was excited about the prospects of going away for college, especially since it meant that she would be leaving her small town in Connecticut.

To ensure her fateful departure, she applied to several schools, not leaving anything to chance.

However, Helena was naturally rife with exuberance and she couldn’t wait until May to leave. Thus, she spontaneously decided to take a short road trip with her boyfriend.

The trip would change her life forever.

For on the way back, they would end up in a car accident that would put Helena in a coma for ten days and keep her in the hospital for a month.

Although it would take three bouts of clinical depression and a good five years to fully recover, Helena was not only an optimist, but she was as stubborn, as she was naturally driven to succeed.

“So, when the doctor adamantly told me ‘Helena, don’t go to college,’ I had no choice but to go to college,” she explained with a smile, one Saturday morning over coffee and tea.

Helena was born on March 7, 1975, in Caracas, Venezuela and lived there until she was five when her family was transplanted to Connecticut.

She is now 34 years old and lives in New York City, working full-time as a freelance photographer and graphic designer.

17 years ago a life-threatening accident wrenched her out of a life that many of us are not only apt to take for granted, but are apt to follow blindly – college, a stable corporate job, marriage, kids, a house in the suburbs, and years of dissatisfaction, because we never followed our bliss.

That’s why, although she’s been through her share of disappointments, today, Helena is pursuing her dreams.

“I’m giving myself two more years to make it as a full-time photographer in New York City,” she conveyed with the same kind of conviction that many young dreamers have when they first move to New York City.

Yet, Helena is a veteran, with no delusions. “I know this will not be an easy journey, it has already been a rather bumpy road. But despite all my harrowing and weary-for-the-worn experience, the biggest lesson I’ve learned, is always pursue your dream. Because, for a long time now, I’ve felt that I’ve been running away. I’ve felt that because I’ve been afraid, because of a lack of money, because I’ve feared my art would not pay off. So, I’ve avoided doing what I have long wanted to do.”

“But now I know. I don’t want to look back 20 years from now, and know that I didn’t at least try. That’s why I know that if I don’t do this now, I may never actually do it. I’m single, I have no children, no husband, and I want to share my work, my Discreet Messages. I want to have a positive influence on society.”

So far, Helena has had ten exhibitions in New York City and she has had an impressive list of clients including Polo Ralph Lauren, Cosmopolitan, Allure, Vogue, Travel + Leisure, City magazine and more.

Most recently, one of her pieces was displayed at the Jack Shainman Gallery, which hosted an art benefit to raise money for the RHM Foundation.

Despite all the obstacles, Helena has long kept her eye on the prize.

“I distinctly remember when I was first given a camera by my parents in middle school, seventh grade. I remember how my father would be angry with me because I often ran up his pharmacy bill with all the photos I got developed.”

“I took pictures of everything – nature, friends, family – and then I would design collages out of them. It was both the beginning of my career as a photographer and a graphic designer.”

And although, at first, she pursued a relatively “safe” college degree in Spanish, she eventually switched and ended up pursuing her true passion – photography.

“Although I almost went to school in Michigan, I ended up going to the University of Colorado at Boulder. I had mountains, nature, and my older brother, Rafael, had gone to school there. Moreover, the university had 25,000 students, which I thought would be a world of difference from the town I grew up in, which only had 9,000 residents. Alas, I was wrong, because Colorado was just as homogenous as Connecticut was, if not more so.”

Nonetheless, Helena has traveled extensively since then. And having lived in New York City for a number of years now, she’s been exposed to one of the most diverse centers for commerce, art and culture that the world has to offer.

"At first, what initimidated me most about pursuing my passion, was that my Dad had long told me that there was ‘no money in art.’ He had studied architecture at Cornell and had grand aspirations of being a great architect. But then – he got married and had three kids. He soon realized that he could not support his family by being an architect, which is why he ended up working at Xerox for the next 25 years.”

“Furthermore, in 1995, I distinctly remember the moment I found myself developing some film in a darkroom, because I was having an exhibition in Denver, and I had an epiphany that would direct me for many years to come – I didn’t want to end up being a starving artist.”

“Thus, after an internship in New York City at an architecture firm, where I ended up taking a lot of photos of interiors for the company, I went back to school and switched my major to creative advertising. Ultimately, I graduated with a BA in creative advertising, and a minor in art history. After that, I worked for a year in Boulder, at Sterling Rice Group as a production artist.”

Eventually though, Helena would get the creative itch again, knowing she was destined for more. “I went back to school for graphic design, at the Parsons School of Design and completed a two-year degree in a year and a half.”

“I ended up freelancing as a graphic artist for two years at places like Estee Lauder, Scholastic, The Gap, Avon, and Ann Taylor. But all the while, I knew that my passion has always been in photography.”

Yet, much the same as freelancers are experiencing today with the recession, jobs and assignments can be hard to come by when the economy is not doing well, as it was doing as a result of 9.11 and the subsequent crash of the economy.

Thus, Helena decided to take a job with Ralph Lauren in 2002. “I was hired to prep and present the children’s line in NYC. But then I burned out, which is when I began to volunteer my time and services with the company’s charity work. I ended up documenting many of their charity events with my camera, which ignited a fire which I had quelled too long for the sake of prudence.”

And although it would take a few more years for her to leave the safety and comfort of the corporate job, in 2006 she decided that she had to make the leap somehow.

“I saw an advertisement for a photography workshop being held by Mary Virginia Swanson, in Santa Fe, New Mexico titled ‘Target Your Market.’

“‘Swanee’ (as she is affectionately known by many of her students), was a huge inspiration to me. I spent an incredibly motivating week there and learned how to market my work, how to build websites, how to network, as well as the importance of joining photography organizations, participating in portfolio reviews, and entering competitions.”

“As a result, I’ve been a member of ,En Foco for three years now, which exhibited my work, Discreet Messages in Latin America, at the Vantage Point Gallery at ICP at The Point CDC
from November 2007-January 2008 in NYC.”

After she returned fired up from the workshop, she made up her mind to leave Ralph Lauren in order to pursue her career as a photographer full time. It would take another year before she had the resources to do so, but eventually she resigned in 2006.

With her savings and the generous support of her parents, she’s been in hot pursuit of her dreams ever since.

And despite the harsh economy, which has hurt everyone, especially freelance artists, Helena has relied on her natural swell of optimism and exuberance to keep going.

“I get up every morning at 5:30 and either go to gym or start working. As a result, every day flies by, because I have this certain passion and vision. Apart from regular exercise and being driven to work, I’ve got a lot of optimism, faith, and love to motivate me. It’s in me, it’s part of my spirit. Especially, since I know I’ve been through hell already, and was fortunate enough to come back. So, its very hard for me to not want to make the most of my life. Because I know it was given back to me for a reason.”

“That’s why I want to share my work with the world. I want others to see what I’ve seen and to hopefully, be motivated to see and think differently because of the messages that I find on the streets and I have long loved to take pictures of. I want others to learn and grow from them, just as I have.”

For more information about Helena V. de Vengoechea’s work:

To keep up to date on what’s up, what’s new and who’s notable in photography and the art world in New York City, subscribe to my column by clicking on Subscribe to Email on!

Monday, February 1, 2010

25 Lessons I've Learned (about photography) is now the #1 bestselling Photo Essay on!

25 Lessons I've Learned (about photography) is now the #1 bestselling Photo Essay on!
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

Click here to purchase the Kindle version of 25 Lessons for $2.50 on Amazon!

25 Lessons I've Learned is now the #1 bestselling kindle Photo Essay on!

New York City, February 1, 2010:

Thank you to all my flickr friends and supporters, my book, 25 Lessons I've Learned (about photography) is now the #1 bestselling Photo Essay on!

Please continue to show your support by telling all your family and friends, especially those with Kindles, iPhone and iTouches. A Kindle ap is available for these devices and more!

25 LESSONS I'VE LEARNED (about photography) SYNOPSIS

In his best-selling book, Lorenzo describes how the deceptively simple rules of photography can also be applied to the art of living. Inspirational and poetic, this book will not only spark readers’ creative energies, but also reawaken your passion for life.

In 2005, as a husband, father, and corporate employee — Lorenzo's life revolved around home, work, and his daily commute from the suburbs to the city.

Then, one day, he found himself staying at the Little Church in midtown Manhattan in the wake of a marital separation. Living in virtual isolation for three months, he had a rare chance to re-examine his life.

Quite unexpectedly, he found himself wandering around the city to take photographs, a passion he had let slide in the years of pursuing a career and starting a family. During his nightly sojourns through the streets of New York City, he was reminded of some important life lessons—lessons too easily forgotten in the blur of everyday existence.


“In many of my conversations on great photographers, I frequently mention Lorenzo’s work. His sequential photographs…are nothing less that a visual urban poem. It has been my pleasure to watch Lorenzo’s rapid growth as a leading photographer of our time.” Jim Van Meter, Rochester, NY, USA

“Lorenzo is a master. His body of work is some of the very best online and may very well be some of the best being done in the medium today. His street work follows in the tradition of Paul Strand, Cartier-Bresson, Garry Winogrand and Larry Friedlander. Lorenzo’s 25 Lessons are…as seminal as Ansel’s dissertation on the zone system. I found them to be reenergizing, perceptive and extremely useful. I have been touched by his story, his writings and by his work. I can’t imagine anyone not being so.” Barry Shapiro, Los Angeles, CA, USA

“Lorenzo…has a passion for life, photography and writing. He is a linguistic genius, a storyteller through words and pictures. He captures with his camera the world as he sees it, its feelings, love, beauty and all it has to offer...” Brenda George, Adelaide, Australia


Lorenzo is an author on street photography, and an award-winning photographer.

As the Photography Examiner for New York for the, Lorenzo chronicles what’s up, what’s new and what’s notable in the world of photography in New York City.

In 2008, he was chosen to be the HP Be Brilliant Featured Artist ( ) and he became the best-selling author of 25 Lessons I’ve Learned (about photography).

Since taking up digital photography in 2005, his photography has been featured in fotoMAGAZIN, Germany's premier photo magazine, and his photos have been cited, posted and published by over 330 other blogs, websites, and print publications.

Today, Lorenzo has over 30,000 photographs published on —one of the world's most popular photography websites—where his photos have been seen over 5.5 million times and where he ranks as one of the site's most popular photographers. He has been called an "Internet photography sensation" by Time Out New York and is considered a "Flickr star" by Rob Walker, Consumed columnist, for New York Times Magazine.

Monday, January 4, 2010

One Case Silent Photography Auction: Supporting the fight against breast cancer one case at a time

One Case Silent Photography Auction: Supporting the fight against breast cancer one case at a time
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom

Originally published on, January 4, 2010

This coming Thursday, January 7 Resource Magazine is offering art lovers, artists, photographers, and humanitarians alike, all a chance to start off the New Year right by helping someone in need.

At 6 PM at the Milk Gallery in Chelsea, NYC, the One Case Silent Photography Auction will be held to benefit a selected freelancer who is in dire need of medical funding, because she is without medical insurance and was recently diagnosed with breast cancer.

According to the Susan G. Komen Foundation, based on current rates, more than 12.7% of women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their lives.

Chances are that's 1 out of every 8 women you know.

Breast cancer is the leading cancer among American women and is second only to lung cancer in cancer deaths. Statistically speaking, about 192,370 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed in American women in 2009 and about 1.3 million new cases of breast cancer were expected to occur among women worldwide in 2007

If caught prior to spreading beyond the breast, the five-year survival rate for breast cancer is now 98%. In 1982, a mere 25 years ago, it was only 74%. Thus, greater awareness leading to more early detection has significantly helped save lives.

There are approximately 2.3 million breast cancer survivors living in the United States today, they make up the largest group of cancer survivors in the country. Thus, there is much to be said for creating awareness.

Moreover, there is much to be said for helping someone get through financial stress and straits of treatment once diagnosed, especially a freelancer without coverage.

According to a 2005 report put out by Freelancers Union, which used data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as well as the NYC self-employment statistics, unstable income and lack of health insurance were the two basic issues freelancers face that other regularly employed Americans do not.

This has become a particularly critical issue in an economy where greater unemployment leads to more competition amongst freelancers, because less revenue means less money to cover the cost of health care. According to the 2005 report, 28% of freelancers simply live without any healthcare insurance at all.

So, please come and help this coming Thursday. Over 30 photographers have already pitched in by donating prints for this important cause.

One Case Silent Photography Auction
6:00PM Thursday, January 7th
Milk Gallery, 450 W 15th, between 9th and 10th, NYC

This event is sponsored by Perrier and Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) Beer.