“I think the best photos are the ones that get close to the subject, the ones that are the most intimate. Most encounters were brief but we found that most locals lacked resources, but remained proud, cheerful and resilient, so I wanted that to come across in the photos”, says 28-year-old photographer Douglas Segars.
“My partner is part Cuban, and has immediate family that are from Cuba, which is what the essay portion of my story revolved around. It’s appropriately titled, ‘Finding My Mother In Cuba’”.
It’s no surprise that photographing complete strangers in a foreign country can be pretty challenging. “If I see a moment and I can capture it candidly, I will. Although sometimes I think I get a better outcome when there is engagement between me and the subject. It is all circumstantial. I found this to be the case in Cuba, as I didn’t want to make anyone feel exploited.”
“One story that came out of shot from the trip was when we hired a driver to take us to a beach which was about an hour away from Havana. Halfway there, his car breaks down. I end up walking around taking a few more pictures, and that’s when I saw the man pushing the wheelbarrow up the road, he pointed us in the direction of some nice palm trees to photograph. About 20-minutes later we come back to the car and the car was fixed. It just goes to show how resourceful Cubans are. He was a taxi driver and a skilled mechanic, simply because he has to be.”