One of my favorite places to hang out is in the Plaza de Armas — the historical, cultural, and tourist center of Cusco. Just as it has for centuries, the Plaza is constantly changing
Differences in season, time of day, weather conditions, etc., produce drastically different photographs of scenes I’ve shot numerous times in the past. Patience and observation are the keys in finding new perspectives on “the same old” scene.
Note: Be sure to click on the individual thumbnails to see the complete photo!
It drive me crazy to see tourists taking the same postcard photos as every other tourist has done for decades. I guess there’s nothing wrong with getting a selfie in front of the Cathedral, but there’s not a lot of originality involved and their picture basically looks exactly like everyone else’s pic.
I understand I’ve had a lot more time to look for unique perspectives than most, but just a tiny bit of patience results in photographs that go far beyond the norm.
One of the best parts of the Plaza is the gorgeous colors of the flowers. Unfortunately, the flower beds are strictly off limits and you will be asked to move if you step onto the grass. However, a smile and a quick “por favor” (please) goes a long way to get you the few seconds from the police necessary to get a decent photo.
In the above photos, I concentrated on the getting the colors of the flower to accent the blurred church facades in the background.
One of the things I like to look for is detail. There are so many things that I’ll bet most people never notice.
For instance, in the two pics above you can see the relief puma head and Kantu flower (sacred flower of the Incas and national flower of Peru) that is on every lamp post! The puma faces stand out, but it was months before I realized the flowers were also there.
As with the flower/cathedral photos before, a little creative composition and use of a fast lens made for much more interesting pics.
The central water fountain is a great place to shoot and is extremely popular with tourists, but you can see that I don’t care for the usual “selfie in front of a fountain”.
The photo options are limitless, especially with Cusco’s beautiful churches and historic buildings in the background. I always try to make sure there is an interesting background to complement the foreground.
Silhouettes can be fantastic pictures especially with the breathtaking sunsets that commonly fill the evening sky. Unfortunately, for me these are the hardest shots to take. Getting the colors just right is something I will continue to work on, but it is certainly a challenge.
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