Ojo de Piedra, the real story, la historia real.

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Bien dicen que de lo mas difícil en la vida es poderse definir a uno mismo, conocerse a fondo, ¿o me equivoco?

Entre los que nos dedicamos al arte en cualquiera de sus disciplinas se estila el usar seudónimos o nombres que reflejen como queremos presentarnos al mundo o mejor aún, lo que guía y motiva nuestro trabajo y parte de nuestra personalidad, manera de ser y filosofía acerca de la vida.

El nombre “Ojo de Piedra”, título de este blog, ademas de ser mi alias en Instagram, Twitter y otras de mis identidades en la web, es el resultado de buscar definir mi identidad corporativa como fotógrafo. En el proceso, buscando dar mas sustancia a esa identidad, surgió en mí la necesidad de proyectar mas de mi esencia personal, de mis experiencias de vida y cómo se reflejaba eso en mi actuar, en mis paradigmas y en mi trabajo. Aún sin ser un experto, siempre me he fascinado con mi cultura mexicana, sobretodo con la mitología prehispánica Azteca y Maya.

Lo que me llevó en esta dirección implica el que a lo largo de mi vida la introspección me ha acompañado en mayor o menor grado, un compromiso hecho conmigo mismo de mejorar mi ser al pasar del tiempo, mi carácter muy contradictorio durante una época, y mi afición por estar en la Naturaleza y meterme a las cuevas, entre otras cosas; así que conociendo un poco sobre el mito de Quetzalcóatl y Tezcatlipoca, deidades de la cosmogonía Náhuatl, Azteca principalmente , encontré en las descripciones que se hacen sobre este último varios elementos con los que me he identificado.

A Tezcatlipoca se le identificó con la oscuridad y la noche, en donde se agudizan los sentidos y se maximiza la intuición; con las fuerzas naturales y primigenias, con los contrastes y los dualismos. Se le consideraba un ser invisible y omnipresente, le nombraban el Corazón del monte, Señor de las cuevas, donde uno puede adentrarse en la esencia de la Naturaleza y llegar a la humildad y la honestidad a través del dominio del ego. A Tezcatlipoca se le conoció también personalizado en el Jaguar, el señor del bosque oscuro, lleno de sabiduría ancestral, y como el Guerrero del Espejo de Obsidiana, ahí en el reflejo disperso donde tiene que observarse a uno mismo hasta llegar al fondo del alma.

Mi manera de conectar con el mundo es a través de la lente de mi cámara, estando de preferencia en el bosque, en las cuevas, en la montaña, donde puedo conectarme conmigo, buscando reinventarme a través de una constante evolución. Para mí el Ojo de Piedra es al mismo tiempo espejo y lente de obsidiana por los que viajan luz y oscuridad, catalizadores de la alquimia entre las caras de mi dualidad, con lo que me tengo que confrontar dentro de mi ser; mi visión de la vida y lo que busco captar y expresar a través de la lente cuando llevo al máximo mi quehacer fotográfico; es también la pupila del ojo del jaguar, la negra entrada de la cueva, el reflejo y la trasparencia del agua en los ríos y cuerpos de agua subterráneos o superficiales, los profundos espacios bajo el follaje del bosque y la selva…

La imagen con que acompaño este texto, realizada me parece que en 2008 o 2009 es la primera encarnación ya pulida de mi representación del Ojo de Piedra, un acercamiento al ojo de un jaguar, estilizado y sintetizado con el frente de una lente fotográfica, un símbolo que en mi mente le daba coherencia a las diferentes facetas de mi persona y mi trabajo. Desde entonces estuve usándolo como logotipo en mis fotos y  sufrió un par de transformaciones, hasta que llegué al punto de solo usar el seudónimo o mi nombre real. Ahora, en pleno proceso de transformación, la imagen tomará forma desde adentro, aunque no sé si alguna vez la comparta.

 Note: If you would rather read this post in English or your own language please visit the web version on http://www.ojodepiedra.wordpress.com and click on the language drop down selector on the left column, thanks!!

Escaping from darkness 

Last year is gone, for good or wrong right?. Now a new chance unveils in front of us. 2016 had some good things about it, and for me some not so good. In fact it also brought to my life some things I definitely want to get rid off, and get a healthier, brighter life.

Now another year has just started, and having photography as my main way of expression the morning of January’s first day I walked for a while looking for some meaningful images. After a while I spotted a small group of little plants shining with a touch of sunlight against a very dark background. To me this image is the one that speaks to me the most, it seemed as if the plants were reaching out into the light, struggling to find their way out from shadow. This 2017 a similar struggle lays in front of me, an hopefully it will take just part of the year.

The End of the year, The End for this blog.

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There’s an unavoidable moment when everything comes to its dusk, completing a cycle just as the Sun follows his path across the sky everyday until it hides far beyond the west. Different times require transformations in Life. So that’s right, with this post this blog reaches its end, at least, the way it has been from its start. In fact, the previous post is the last one in which the main topic is my photography work.

The original name, Ojo de Piedra, “Eye of Stone” was inspired based in my philosophy of life, but also and most importantly, in the way I interact with the world, almost always looking for the light, the textures, the places, the people or the moments I can translate with a camera and a lens in something that is part of my understanding, that has my signature, my vision, or my sense of aesthetics. That said, the main topic of this blog has always been my photography, the places I capture when I travel, documenting my adventures or my ideas, a little talk about photo gear and technique, and the like. In that tune the “eye” fitted really nicely, you know, the act of looking, the camera lens, etc., the full phrase has a lot more meaning behind the three words to it, something much more intimate that is inspired by a fragment of a story from the Aztec philosophy that resonates a lot with my way of thinking about myself.

In the recent months my life has been going through very hard times and that has made me take the tough decision of leading this blog away from what it was and take it into another direction. Thus, from now on my photography will still play a very important role here, but more as a means of expressing the tribulations of my mind, the process of understanding the path my life has followed, my thoughts and feelings as I embark on a journey through my inner self, a personal battle and a struggle that may lead myself through some not so nice places.

For sure there will be more photography oriented content for which I will start a new blog, which means to me the start of a new challenge and a new adventure, one that I’m really looking forward to share with you, so for sure you will be the first to know!!

Looking back at my Nature images from 2016.

Photographing Nature is some of the most rewarding experiences for me. Throughout the year I make a lot of images, some I like, some not so much, some have a special place in my eyes and in my heart. I like to share with you a selection of some of the ones that have that special place.

Untitledemp_20160311_013emp_20161016_012Agave DephtsIgnitedThrough the deepemp_20160702_088A tear among the veins of lifeemp_20161013_060-editemp_20160626_016emp_20161103_035emp_20161125_051emp_20161104_167Trough giantsemp_20160310_011A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

Renewal, time to let the facts dictate the path of life.


The Holiday season is always a time for an introspective review of our lives. Now with the end of this year just at hand and having looked back at many things that happened this 2016 and even from earlier before, it is a must for me to retrace the path of my life in several ways, from work goals and processes to some personal habits and even some paradigms. The actual state of things demands a refreshment, a process of unlearning some things and learning again, as if the pen got broken and the ink was over having to start again, rewriting the book of possibilities. This blog is of course in the master plan.

Renewal | The Daily Post

Among trees

A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

Walking among trees, again in the quest to remember the very basic breath of life, looking for the essential and struggling to find again myself and my way back out of darkness, trying to understand the wisdom that lies in the forest, breathing deep the cool and fresh air, walking slowly step after step, camera in hand, sometimes raised to my eye, some attempts to interprete the experience in an image, in deep listening, watching the sunlight pass trough the branches and revealing bits of life on the ground, inhaling the greens and the touches of golden light. Yes, it’s something that touches my soul.

A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

A forest near Jilotzingo, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

Touches of sunlight and blue sky.

Today the afternoon greeted the eyes and heart with touches of beautiful sunlight and patches of blue in the sky. So many hours and hours of grey tones, rain and inclement weather set me in low power mode, I need light, a light that does not come enough from humans as it would be nicer lately, light that throws away confusion, light that pierces the veils that blur my senses and feelings. Nature is still providing, gifts like these keep me going, reminders that say that hope is still a valid word.

Tiny, connection through the details in Nature.

Tiny

via Photo Challenge: Tiny

Some human beings like myself go through times when we struggle finding the connection with the rest of the people, the rest of the world, the news on the radio, a TV program, reading a magazine, are just confusing echoes of the daily life of the ones free from unveiled chains. The soul burdened with heavy loads looks for the simple closeness to Nature, focusing on the smaller, tiny details help to keep that connection, soothes the spirit, and help to bring some beautiful moments of joy and the feel that life is indeed worth living.

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Oaxaca at the beginning of November.

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Here in Mexico the Day of the Dead celebration is one of the most important throughout the year in all the country. At the city of Oaxaca and its surroundings the “Comparsas” and “Muerteadas”, a sort of parades with people dancing and playing music are full of action, enjoyment and peculiar characters where Catrinas stand out celebrate the duality between life and death, and where homage is paid to the ones that have preceded us in the journey to the other side.

Here I share some images I captured in Oaxaca and the town of Villa Etla the first two days of November hauling around my Fujifilm XT10 and my old and a lot larger Nikon D200 DSLR to evaluate the pros and cons of each camera in the task of documenting the area and the celebrations, kind of street and travel photography style. In following posts I’ll be glad to share more images from these days in Oaxaca.

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Aquí en México la celebración del Día de Muertos es una de las mas importantes del año en todo el país. En la ciudad de Oaxaca y sus alrededores las Comparsas y Muerteadas, suerte de procesiones donde la gente canta y baila están llenas de acción, disfrute y personajes peculiares donde destacan las Catrinas celebran la dualidad entre la vida y la muerte, y donde se rinde homenaje a aquellos que nos precedieron en el viaje al otro lado.

Aquí les comparto algunas de las imágenes que capté en Oaxaca y Villa Etla los primeros d0s días de noviembre trayendo de acá para allá mi Fujifilm XT10 y mi vieja y mucho mas grande DSLR D200 de Nikon para evaluar los pros y contras de cada cámara en la tarea de documentar la zona y sus celebraciones algo mas al estilo de la fotografía de calle y de viajes. En publicaciones subsecuentes tendré el gusto de compartir mas imágenes de éstos días en Oaxaca.

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Early morning light giving life to the architecture of the city of Oaxaca, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

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Day of the dead celebrations in the streets of Oaxaca, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

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Day of the dead celebrations in the streets of Oaxaca, Mexico. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

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Characters at the Muerteadas, Day of the dead celebrations. Villa Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico. November 2016. Eduardo Mendoza.

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Characters at the Muerteadas, Day of the dead celebrations. Villa Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico. November 2016. Eduardo Mendoza.

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Characters at the Muerteadas, Day of the dead celebrations. Villa Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico. November 2016. Eduardo Mendoza.

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Characters at the Muerteadas, Day of the dead celebrations. Villa Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico. November 2016. Eduardo Mendoza.

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Characters at the Muerteadas, Day of the dead celebrations. Villa Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico. November 2016. Eduardo Mendoza.

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Grasshoppers are some of the insects harvested from the fields of Mexico to serve as food, here, sold at the market of Oaxaca. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

Pan de Yema, Oaxaca.

A special kind of bread is made for the Day of the Dead celebrations at the beggining of November in Oaxaca, Mexico, called “pan de yema” or yolk bread, made all year, but decorated with the tiny faces and shaped like people is only made for this ocassion. Market of Oaxaca. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

Pan de Yema, Oaxaca.

A special kind of bread is made for the Day of the Dead celebrations at the beggining of November in Oaxaca, Mexico, called “pan de yema” or yolk bread, made all year, but decorated with the tiny faces and shaped like people is only made for this ocassion. Market of Oaxaca. November 2016. ©Eduardo Mendoza.

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