Imagine this – being completely satisfied with a trip taking nothing home with you but great photographs. At Foto Ruta if we get good pictures out of a vacation, the trip was an automatic success, which is convenient seeing that we aren’t exactly millionaires yet. Maybe we had the stomach flu from drinking some bad water at a hostel, maybe our bag gets stolen from our chair while we eat in Plaza Serrano in Palermo, but if we got good pictures, it was all worth it.
In Western culture, we are conditioned to think we need to buy something — any silly souvenir, really — to appreciate where we have been. But take it from us, we think we have good taste, and a few years down the road you will appreciate a black and white photograph you took of a random antique shop in San Telmo much more than one of those flattened out Quilmes bottles or terrible acrylic paintings of tango dancers they sell in Plaza Dorrego.
If you were born in the 21st century, you probably bring some sort of camera with you when you travel, no matter how serious a photographer you are. Everyone is different, and some people may prefer experiencing a place through their eyes instead of through the lens of a camera. At Foto Ruta, however, we believe you can do both, and that a camera lens brings out parts of a place like Buenos Aires that you may not notice were you to keep your face buried in a map or guidebook.
Switching from tourist to photographer mode makes for a different kind of trip, but often a more special trip, because when you are on the look-out for good material for photographs, you are much more likely to venture out of the typical touristy neighborhoods and see things you wouldn’t see otherwise.
You might come across a neighborhood that has no museums, no nice cafes and restaurants, but plenty of color or hole-in-the-wall parrillas or bars with photogenic waiters. Next thing you know you have seen a different, local barrio, were probably forced to converse in Spanish, and maybe even got some good pictures out if it.
When even just half of your focus is on taking good photographs (the other half on eating red meat, drinking delicious malbec, or cheering for Boca Juniors), you’ll find that you see the world differently, and that turning something nobody would think to take a picture of into a memorable photograph becomes the most exciting event of your afternoon, and we mean that in a good way.
At Foto Ruta, we believe that photographer mode helps you appreciate the simple pleasures and aspects of a city that make it unique because it slows you down to a pace where you are looking around every corner, at every face, and through every window for a hint at what kind of photograph would capture the world you are experiencing at that moment.