Categories
Photography

Mexico’s nation-wide protest against presidential elections

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The presidential elections in Mexico had lots of dubious activities mostly from the Revolutionary Party (PRI) and everyone went on the streets to protest against the results that favor that party’s candidate.

Protests like the one photographed in these images took place all over the country in big and medium cities (where the cartels and army counldn’t stop people from going to the streets). These images are only from the one in Guadalajara city, but the same feeling is all around the country.

The media manipulations over the elections and the false statistics have become more and more evident, specially after the advantage numbers resulted in far less difference than what the major statistics publications reported all along.

The march in Guadalajara took several hours and was several kilometers long. I couldn’t reach the end of it, it was really massive.

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Photography wise, I’m happier with the results. I prepared (at least mentally planned) for the images I wanted to capture. I’m still not completely satisfied, I think I can capture more emotions and try different angles of things I see. On the good side, I feel I missed less shots. I still struggle a bit playing with the camera settings on the fly to get the right exposure but I’m getting a hang of it. The article on F8 and be there was a good advice to follow. Also switching lenses while walking in the middle of a protest is very challenging. But in general it is very interesting and fun.

Most photos were shot in RAW this time, which gave me more freedom to play on the editing part. The downside of it is that I took more than 600 pictures and selecting the best shots, then edit the RAW files was a very time consuming and exhausting task. Next time I’ll plan ahead some specific shots I want to get and shoot less “let’s get whatever happens here” pictures. Sometimes I shot because people were expecting me to take their picture when there was really nothing special happening at the scene. I’m sure having the constraint of taking less pictures will make me think better my shots instead of going click-crazy with the shutter button.

As always you can find more photos published on my Flickr set Marcha Anti-Imposicion Guadalajara

Categories
Events Photography

#YoSoy132 protest and Mexico’s 2nd presidential debate events

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Last weekend was Mexico’s 2nd presidential debate in Guadalajara. Lucky for me, I’m now living in this city so I had the opportunity to witness several of the events and protests around this event. On Sunday there was the protest against the PRI candidate Enrique Peña Nieto, the so called anti-EPN protest. Later in the day the second #YoSoy132 protest in Guadalajara took place without regard for the intense sun and heat (well…coming from my hometown and Monterrey city, this was not that bad for me). As always I didn’t miss the opportunity to take my camera and try to get some cool pictures.

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Dogs also joining the cause.

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As in the previous protest, there were lots of signs telling people to get informed and not to vote according to the charismatic television propaganda.

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This sign is asking for an apology from Mexico’s major TV network to the mexican people for publishing information with a bias to a candidate, as The Guardian has published Televisa’s dirty tricks.

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There has been a lot of criticism about the YoSoy132 movement being a left wing supporting movement, but here’s an image that proves that there are also signs against the left wing’s candidate.

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Lastly me and some friends watched the debate in a public space where large screens and speakers were set up by one of the left wing political parties where by the end of the day, that political party’s candidate, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) went on the stage to say a few words on how he felt he won the debate and to encourage his followers to continue supporting him on his campaign.

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It was the first time I attend a political party event and the experience was surprising. I saw it as an opportunity to experience those events, how people get convinced and how euphoric people are about a political view while gathered in masses. One of the things that impressed me the most was that there were two people cheering for the candidate on stage while waiting for him to get to the location. One of them was a young man that cheered the event like any other event host, nothing spectacular. But the other one was a middle aged woman, and she cheered like she was an evangelical priest. The words she shouted and the euphoria with which she shouted reminded me of the chants and shouting prayers of some religions. They were singing the party’s song (where do they learn the song from?!) and they were all very hyped about the fact that they were going to see “their favourite leader”.

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These are a small sample of the pictures I took that day. For more images please visit the photosets Second protest #YoSoy132 and AMLO after debate on my Flickr account.

It always amazes and interests me a lot all these events where people get encouraged to behave in some manner that they normally won’t behave, being a religious event, a musical concert or, as I now learned, a political party event.

It was very difficult for me to get good photographs because it was overcrowded, lots of people getting in my shots and they had lots of signs and flags that also got in my way. I’ll keep trying to get good shots at these events, hopefully someday I’ll master the technique of photography in those circumstances.

Categories
Events Photography

Protest against the media #YoSoy132 in Guadalajara

I haven’t been up to date to what is being published about Mexico in the rest of the world, but at least all mexicans know about this protest gathering. It all started when presidential candidate Enrique Peña Nieto went to the Ibero university to give a speech to the students. There, the students protested against him, calling him a murderer and questioning him about the killings in the Atenco incident.

Afterwards, national media covered the story and published everywhere that the meeting at the university was a success. The political party published a video (now pulled down) with fake students giving their approval to the candidate. Then the political party leader said that those students were a minority and that they were not students but paid agitators by a rival political party. This was the last drop, after having to stand up for false voters statistics, and other statistics where the totals added over 100%, many covered news and lots of praisals for this candidate from all major news publications in the country.

All this made everyone very pissed off about the matter, and started protests first on video and then the people on the streets. The protests happened on the same day at the same time on all the big cities of Mexico with most of the participants being students. The claim was to expose the media as lyers and that students won’t swallow anymore all their bullshit.

The movement was called 132, because the media said that only 131 students were the ones who protested against the presidential candidate. That being a big fat lie, everyone started protesting stating that we are 132 (actually thousands more) in the same spirit of the occupy movement’s 99%.

Also being fed up with media bullshit since 5 years ago, I joined the protest. Plus it was a perfect opportunity to give my new camera gear a try in the field. The protest started in Chapultepec Ave. and they walked to the Televisa building. There, everyone placed protest banners and signs on the walls. Afterwards, we walked to the Milenio headquarters where one university student was invited to a radio show to talk about the protest going on outside the studios. We listened through a megaphone and people started leaving messages with white chalk on the street. Finally everyone walked back to the starting point.

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It was a very calm protest. There were no agitators or any violence acts.

The funny thing was that that same night, on the daily news, the media minimized the impact and size of the protests. Will they ever get the message?