Fotoeins Fotopress

One photo at a time – one journey to last a lifetime

Posts from the ‘South America’ category

Chile’s Elqui River: World Tourism Day 2013

Embalse Puclaro, Region de Coquimbo, Chile

27 September 2013 has been earmarked by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) as “World Tourism Day 2013″. Various tweets throughout the day have highlighted responsible water usage around the world.

The Elqui River in north-central Chile begins in the mountains of the lower Andes, and flows west to the Pacific along the southern edge of the Atacama desert through the towns of Vicuña and La Serena. The average annual total rainfall in La Serena is 10 to 13 cm (4 to 5 inches), less than one-tenth of the total for Vancouver, Canada.

The Elqui was dammed by 1999 to control water usage by farms in the lower valley and by pisco vinyards in the upper valley; however, construction of the dam displaced people in small low-lying towns on both sides of the river. Behind the dam in the Embalse or reservoir Puclaro (photo above), the water level has declined with lower annual snowfall in the mountains above and higher usage by farms and the increasing population below. The price for water continues to rise due to competition from mines, farms, and the growing population. Numerous research visits and five years living in La Serena emphasized the contrast of the importance of water to people’s lives in the region with the dominant presence of the neighbouring Atacama.

I made the photo above on 9 August 2008; the photo is also available here. This post appears on Fotoeins Fotopress at

7 SuperShots: fotoeins’ super-7

Thanks to Christina Hegele’s kind nomination in her post, I’m participating in “7 Supershots”, organized by the folks at HostelBookers.

I’ve had a lot of fun with this exercise, as I’ve had to peruse and think, select and ruminate through a truckload of photos. I hope you enjoy my “super seven”!

1. “A photo that … takes my breath away”

Prague at night, Prag, Praha, Czech Republic

Míšeňská, Malá Strana, Prague, Czech Republic – 9 October 2009

This has always been one of my favourites, because the photo always evokes memories of the “open city that is the museum itself”. At night, the place calms down, and visitors and residents head back inside. In my view, the late hour is the best time to explore the beautifully illuminated parts of Prague.

2. “A photo that … makes me laugh or smile”

Sandtorhafen at sunset, Hamburg, Germany

Speicherstadt, Hamburg, Germany – 2 October 2011

As the sun set over Hamburg harbour, I caught sight of this young family in silhouette on one of the bridges in the Sandtorhafen district. I like the juxtaposition of living people big and small with the mechanical cranes of the working port in the background.

3. “A photo that … makes me dream”

Vaxholm, Stockholm archipelago, Sweden

Vaxholm, Sweden – 26 June 2008

It’s summertime in Stockholm’s archipelago – long hours in the warm sun, beautiful blue skies, smooth calm waters, cozy cottages on little islands, with boats darting here and there. I dream of spending summers in Scandinavia – how about you?

4. “A photo that … makes me think”

Opera House, Sydney, Australia

Tiles on the Opera House, Sydney, Australia – 8 October 2010

When you hear the words “Sydney Opera House”, the curved shells which make up the roof come to mind. But you don’t often think about the details. The symmetry and geometry shown here come from the individual glazed ceramic tiles which make up the shell-roof surface.

5. “A photo that … makes my mouth water”

Hon's Wun-tun House, Vancouver, Canada

Hon’s Wun-tun House, Vancouver, Canada – 4 May 2010

It seems all too simple: pork and shrimp dumplings, soft thin egg noodles, chopped green onions, all in a light savory broth. Once a favourite meal as a boy, I’ll now devour bowls of wun-tun noodle soup. That is, if I’m not distracted by the BBQ-pork rice-plate …

6. “A photo that … tells a story”

Grouse Mountain, North Vancouver, BC, Canada

Grouse Mountain, North Vancouver, Canada – 7 February 2012

The “blind” skiier is at the top of the downhill run called “The Cut” (easy-level); their seeing-guide is in front and off to the left. Did blindness come early or later in life? Has this person always skiied? If not, how did they learn? What other senses are accentuated while skiing?

7. “A photo about which I am most proud (a.k.a. shot worthy of National Geographic)”

lights, Coquimbo, La Serena, Chile

The lights of Coquimbo from La Serena, Chile – 7 May 2011

By experimenting with “focus-pull” on a zoom-lens and a steady tripod, I wanted to see how the lights in neighbouring Coquimbo would appear on photographs with minute-long exposure times. As you can see here, I was satisfied with the result.

What do you think? If you have any favourite(s), please take a moment and leave your impressions in the comments below.

Although they may already have existing requests, I’m still passing the torch to the following people:

  1. A Dangerous Business – Amanda Williams
  2. Cheryl Howard
  3. Monkeys, Mountains and Maultaschen – Laurel Robbins
  4. Nomadic Samuel – Samuel Jeffery

I made all of the photos shown above with the Canon EOS450D (XSi) camera. This post appears on Fotoeins Fotopress (

A video message from me to you

La Serena, Chile – Tuesday, December 20, 2011 : 1915h CLST (2215h UTC).

This piece of tomfoolery (poor tom) appears originally on Fotoeins Fotopress (

Lunch at Madero Curitiba

This past July (2011), I traveled to Curitiba, Brazil to visit friend and photographer Paula Anddrade. I had a great time there, relaxing some, and encountering something different on the other side of the continent. I realized I merely glossed over a delicious lunch in an earlier post; I’m bringing that lunch to life in this post.

Paula wanted to take me to a really nice place for lunch in town. There was very little disappointment and lots of satisfaction to be found at Madero Prime Steakhouse on Avenida Jaime Reis, just west of Largo da Ordem and the historical district.

Restaurant interior, Madero Jaime ReisRestaurant interior, Madero Jaime Reis

The restaurant interior was cozy yet spacious, with warm red-brown colours and a mixture of brick and wood-paneling. The ceiling was high, and the street-facing windows allowed a lot of natural light to illuminate the space within. There were approximately ten to twelve tables, which aren’t many, but they were all busy. We arrived a little late for the lunch hour; there were a lot of office-workers and other small groups finishing their meals. The service was efficient, knowledgeable, casual yet attentive, but never pushy.

The restaurant’s menu itself is revealing. Even in Brazilian Portuguese and without the immediate benefit of translation, there is little doubt about what’s on offer and the quality that awaits.

My eyes went straight to the picanha or rumpsteak. With my request for medium-rare, edging on the rare side, I ordered the 350 grams (12 ounces) of rumpsteak; the menu states that all of the meat-cuts come from Uruguay. I also ordered two side dishes: steamed white rice and the ubiquitous “farofa“, which is manioc flour fried in butter, mixed with chopped eggs and bacon bits.

We made quick work of the appetizers including olives, cheese, bruschetta, and grilled palm hearts (palmito). Some might find palm hearts on the bland side, but the description “assado na brasa com Flor de Sal de Guerande” (barbequed or grilled with ‘flower salt‘ from France’s Guérande) was apt. Marked with a light char, the palm had a light smoky flavour.

Appetizers, Madero Jaime Reis
Appetizers – palmito, bruschetta, cheese, olives.
Picanha (rumpsteak), Madero Jaime Reis
The main or entrée – picanha.

Picanha (rumpsteak), Madero Jaime Reis
Main – picanha, spicy garnish.
Arroz branco e farofa com ovos, Madero Jaime Reis
Sides – steamed rice, farofa with eggs.

One look at the menu’s final page told me there would be room for dessert. One dessert on the menu in particular was voted “2010′s best dessert in Curitiba” — the Petit Gâteau de doce de leite (the little cake with caramelized milk) — which you can revel in its full glory below.

Petit Gâteau de doce de leite, Madero Jaime Reis
Petit Gâteau de doce de leite.
Petit Gâteau de doce de leite, Madero Jaime Reis
The sweet liquid centre.

The restaurant and the food were just some of the highlights for my visit to Curitiba.

What are your food highlights?

  • Where is the best steak you’ve had, in your city or out on the road?
  • Where is the best dessert you’ve had, in your city or out on the road? Was it because of taste or presentation or both?

No Connection, Unpaid, My Own Opinions Disclosure: No Connection, Unpaid, My Own Opinions. I have not received any compensation for writing this content and I have no material connection to the brands, topics and/or products that are mentioned herein ( We went to Madero — we had lunch, we thoroughly enjoyed lunch, and we paid for lunch ourselves.

I made the photos above on 12 July 2011. This post was published originally on Fotoeins Fotopress (


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