Going to Cuba with my photography class during my last semester of university made me question how I can best help people in the world, and where my time should be spent. From Havana to the countryside of Viñales, I saw how simple life can be. Cubans live simple lives. For the past four years, I’ve studied to become a designer, for expensive, cutting-edge technologies. While traveling in Cuba I asked myself: how can I impact a world that in the case of Cuba, has limited to no access to the technologies that I design for? This question is huge, and I look forward to exploring it more now that I have graduated from RIT.
During my time on the island, my project was focused on photographing and getting to know the people of Cuba. Traditionally, my work has primarily been landscape nature and scenery, with little amounts of the human element. I simply wasn’t as comfortable photographing people. I knew I wanted this to change, and so I promised myself I would go outside of my comfort zone. In the end, it was all worth it. I got to continue practicing my Spanish speaking skills while I learned more about the Cubans I was photographing. I learned how to ask a stranger if I could take their photo, and I also learned to accept rejection…Of course, I made lots of friends.