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Author Topic: My Big Hope  (Read 5523 times)
Andres Bonilla
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« on: July 02, 2007, 12:06:09 PM »
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Dear friends, I went to Guadalajara to do a story on the organization " Mi Gran Esperanza" My big hope. They provide financial, psychological and moral support to children with cancer and their families.The stories were heart wrenching because of the economical struggles these people endure. Most fathers can not cope with the pain and they split leaving the mothers with all the burden of the ill baby plus the care of the other children.The group of doctors and volunteers that took this wing 8 years ago found themselves with the dismal rate of  8 kids dying out of 10. Today 7 kids survive out of 10.
 Below is a few of the photos I took between breaks of my special series.
 
First photo: Moana "Mona" has been in coma twice, her prognosis is much better now
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2007, 12:10:20 PM »
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Amelia is responding very slowly to quimotherapy, her mother quit her job to be with her 24/7, she sleeps on the floor, her dad comes on weekends since he took a third job. This morning Guadalupe was at the verge of collapse, both physically and emotionally.
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2007, 12:23:39 PM »
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The brothers of Carmen who has leukemia, their father in an act of despair accepted a job carrying tires across Sinaloa, his worries were true and he was arrested with a cargo of drugs hidden in the shipment. He will be in jail for more than 15 years. His family found this abandoned house and they are living with the meager salary of their mother who cleans houses.
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2007, 12:29:37 PM »
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Catita lost her left eye, her parents struggle but they are together, now they live with her Grandmother in a room they converted in a apartment.
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2007, 12:52:07 PM »
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Princess and Chato have learned to fend for themselves, their mom travels 5 hours by bus to take their ill brother to the hospital; Princess cooks and tends for the other 4 children. Most of the time her mom has to stay overnight.
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #5 on: July 04, 2007, 03:52:42 PM »
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I am little curious about the lack of responses, is it the subject matter? Or as someone pointed out in another thread and to another photographer, the photos did not do anything for him. I know this is a landscape site but I hava gotten lots of feedback out of people's photos.

Thanks,

Andres
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jani
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« Reply #6 on: July 04, 2007, 04:16:36 PM »
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To me, the problem is all the text; it's very hard to ignore the text and concentrate on the images only.

Also, the sheer number of images means that spending time to analyze each and every one is infeasible.

And having read part of the text, it seemed as if you don't want a critique, but that you rather wanted to spread a humanitarian message.
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Jan
Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #7 on: July 04, 2007, 06:36:31 PM »
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Thanks Jani for your input! From your perspective it clears a lot of things! I thought the text would be informative and insightful but obviously it was obstructive. I was asked in another forum to show the photos as a series, here it did not work
I also wrongly assumed that just by showing the photographs would be sufficient or the pictures would merit enough to spark some type or response.
I also published a single photo of Sebastian with the same result. Nada.

Thanks for your time


Andres
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offissa
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« Reply #8 on: July 04, 2007, 10:03:31 PM »
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Wonderful moving photos, thanks for sharing them. It's sort of hard to criticise them as photographs since your emotional response tends to overwhelm any consideration of focus, composition etc, but I don't think that matters so much because the subject matter is so powerful. I think the last one is excellent.
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2007, 12:17:52 PM »
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Thank you offissa, yes it is a difficult subject matter, I am glad that the series are being edited and shown in July instead of August; they need all the help they can get.

Thanks,

Andres
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #10 on: July 06, 2007, 12:52:54 AM »
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I think I have a troll in my thread.
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jani
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« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2007, 04:31:37 AM »
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Quote
Thanks Jani for your input! From your perspective it clears a lot of things! I thought the text would be informative and insightful but obviously it was obstructive. I was asked in another forum to show the photos as a series, here it did not work
I also wrongly assumed that just by showing the photographs would be sufficient or the pictures would merit enough to spark some type or response.
I also published a single photo of Sebastian with the same result. Nada.

Thanks for your time
The photographs are sufficient in themselves, which is why I probably would have felt that the text got in the way regardless of the message.

There isn't much for me to say about them, except that in most cases, I love your rendition, the tonalities and subtle manipulations of soft glowing light and presentation is really moving.
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Jan
matthew1
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« Reply #12 on: August 17, 2007, 12:33:42 AM »
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To me these are strong images, but difficult subjects.

I presume that pity is the response you are hoping to get ? That's how I feel.

I also feel guilty when I see them like when I watch the television shows on sunday asking to sponsor a child in poverty. I never make the call and have to change the channel due to guilt.

The photograph of the child with a missing eye is very strong to me. You have a good eye and can capture emotion.

I suppose we all communicate a given "tone" with our images due to our own outlook on life. Your "tone" seems tragic and very bleak. It's just difficult to deal with.
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #13 on: August 17, 2007, 09:48:20 PM »
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Hi Matthews, thanks for the comment! As a videographer I have had to cover many stories and I have learned to show them as they were presented to me. In another forum a photographer asked me if a different expression on the kids faces would have made better photos. I asked him what type of expressions and he replied " happier survivor looks " or something to that end, well I am not trying to only elicit pity or sadness from these photos but this was the reality I found, tragic but hopefully not helpless. I don't  have a bleak outlook on life, the matter in fact I live a fulfilling life in beautiful southern California, but since I get to see in a daily basis the lives of the less fortunate, I do not edit my photos to make them more palatable. Well, I did not post the photos of the 2 kids that are no longer with us after the series.
I really appreciate your comments since it gives me and insight into how people react to what I see and photograph.
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X-Re
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« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2007, 10:04:46 AM »
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Here's a thought - as I read this thread, and your comments, Andres, it struck me that it wasn't terribly obvious what kind of critique you were looking for (this is the User Critiques forum after all...  What would have helped me was a statement at the top setting your expectations - ie, How do these images strike you? or something like that.

Otherwise, its left to the user as to figure out what you're asking for, and given the nature of the forum, we'd assume you are looking for a critique of your images. The images are great - so I wouldn't expect a lot of comment, as improvements to the images are perhaps hard to imagine.

My reaction was that your images are powerful and evocative, and you tell the story well. Not being very strong in photojournalism, at this point, I can't really add much in terms of how I think you can improve. The last couple images are perhaps a bit heavy and flat in terms of tonality, but that may very well be intentional.
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Andres Bonilla
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« Reply #15 on: August 21, 2007, 12:18:28 PM »
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Thanks X-RE it makes a lot of sense what you say,yes the tonality was done on purpose but I did not want to bring to much attention to it since I thought the images by themselves would stirr some discussion. Later I found out that the explanation of the escenario was a bit much for some. So next time I will post them with more of a critique request and less of the reasoning behind the series.
BTW  the las t one is one of my favorites
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