Meet Erlinda Bernales, a cigarette vendor in downtown Iloilo, my home city here in the Philippines. When I saw her 3 days ago, I had the urge to get off the jeepney and photograph her. Problem was, I didn't have my camera. So the next day (yesterday) with my camera in hand, I set off to my little expedition. What followed was over 70 pictures of her. Such a character. So much stories that went along with every line in her face.
I am so grateful she allowed me to take pictures of her very "rich" and "beautiful" face.
Critiques | Translate
alford (3989) 2006-04-06 23:08
Aside from being a good photographer and writer, you're also very good in interacting with your subjects! Over 70 shots with her? I'm very impressed, and awaiting the rest of the photos. Right now, I'm wondering about the "whats" and "hows" of your photoshoot with her. The sharpness and quality are excellent! And her look has many stories to tell!
herbnallison (1109) 2006-04-06 23:42
Manny, what an incredible portrait. Such detail. Her wrinkles speak volumes. I really think it's a great photo. Thanks, Herb
weiphoto (353) 2006-04-07 0:05
Manny, a beautiful portrait. How did you create the darkness of her skin, yet have detail in her rings?
ckuan (270) 2006-04-07 0:08
Her expression is timeless.The wrinkles and gaze (from both eyes) trigger deep thoughts and feelings. The smooth shine of the variety of rings contrast against her textured toned hands. Qudos,Qudos!
kinginexile (2598) 2006-04-07 2:36
heyhey, Manny, I guess you took your camera after all ;-).
Not that I ever believed you would not. And what a loss it would be, with this extraordinary, masterful additon to your portraits gallery.
nygus (8178) 2006-04-07 2:58
Those rings ! she has so much style and beautiful face
cobraphil8 (84) 2006-04-07 3:02
Marvellous portrait, but more than the aesthetic side, in fact the wrinkles of this woman impress. One could read his life in his wrinkles, so much they are deep and numerous.
Good idea to have also taken its hands.
pilpel-adom (3018) 2006-04-07 3:27
Manny, one of your best photos I have seen thus far!
First of all, the composition is just PERFECT, framing her from her forhead down to her chin and clapped hands, all showing the lines of time acompaning her. The combination of her jewelery and gems on her hands connect well with her own gimmering gem in her eyes! You gave her great respect by posting this human post, a moving one!
Thank you for sharing this woman with us all,
luisafonso (862) 2006-04-07 3:53
I am overwhelmed. First of all I am saving this in my favorites to remember me that I am not dreaming. This is the best B&W portrait I’ve seen anywhere in the last months. The detail is amazing and the sharpness just right. The face has a soft/sharp duality that amazes me. The composition is awesome, directing my attention to two areas filled with interest: the complicit eyes and the hands full of rings. The light is also very well recorded and great detail coming from the shadows. I agree that f/8 was an excellent choice since it reveals detail both in the body as well in the costume. And finally your subject… that expression in the face… that posture. What stories should hide beneath those eyes, those tiny lips and all the wrinkles. Time has indeed been omnipresent here. Thank you very much for sharing this gem.
markoci (3933) 2006-04-07 4:51
simply gorgeous. amazing work on your b&w conversion. envy you and others who can (better) communicate with locals during their travels, imo essential for great portraits.
Burnham (2428) 2006-04-07 4:57
I believe she is the kind of woman any portrait photographer would like to work with, but I'm glad you're the one that got the job! Both you and she did an exellent job. I kneel in the dust ;o)
rushfan2112 (2965) 2006-04-07 5:14
Manny, fantastic portrait. It's almost 3-D. Best wishes, Paul.
ebruardil (461) 2006-04-07 5:33
This is realy a fantastic portrait. Oh my God, how old is she? Impressive shot.I wish to see the other shots you have taken with her. TFS, congratulations.
vagabondtravels (6511) 2006-04-07 6:11
Beautiful portrait. Very sharp. Excellent work.
ALSOM (6616) 2006-04-07 7:43
I can only admire this beautiful portrait, i'm voiceless, so many feelings from this woman: her face, eyes, hands, etc. Maybe the most beautiful portrait I've ever seen so far on TE.
Thanks, Alain -
veronika (6058) 2006-04-07 7:45
Manuel, this picture is scarying me little bit.. wow,, GREAT!!
Luko (14000) 2006-04-07 8:44
This one is a real winner, a delightful composition and something that comes both from the character and photog's soul without involving external artefacts.
To be frank with you, I think you were perma-looping, otherwise called an acute case of psittacism ,in some of your previous uploads(ie. Manny doing Manny shots). Life is not only made of giggles, and processing eyes like they were starballs have never made an image better if you see what I mean ;) ...
Hence, I'm glad you're going back to THE BEST of photography, just the subject, the photog and the mood he wants to fill into.
The tight strict compo and the way you've processed her in low key is simply GREAT, I have no other words for that.
If I had to be a little picky I would ask you to lower the contrasty shiny effect on her rings, which competes a bit too much with the upper part and makes her rather look like the emperor in Star Wars... Apart from that certaibly one of your best in your portfolio.
Furachan (0) 2006-04-07 10:21
Extraordinary portrait - this is no glamor shot, Manuel, but something deep and resonant. All your technique at the service of a beautiful truth.
A big BRAVO!
eleparc (24063) 2006-04-07 11:17
a magnificent portrait of Erlinda! Every inch of her face tells a story as well as her blind eye... However, the harsh contrasts makes her look very hard while a softer one may have made her look more gentle... have you given it a try?
nerve (10231) 2006-04-07 12:24
this is a great portrait, beautiful framing.
i love her expression and her rings..
a big bravo!
PeterC (2242) 2006-04-07 12:34
Beautiful contrasts in this stunning potrait. I love all the textures. Beautiful work.
sengir (4956) 2006-04-07 15:04
just one word - RESPECT!!! definitely amongst your best (and best in TE in general).
Jeppe (18654) 2006-04-07 15:29
Long time no see - a very strong portrait you present for us here - too bad to "forget" you camera in first place - but glad you got this great work.
The B&W makes the shot as well.
designsoul (21492) 2006-04-07 16:36
One word: MAGICAL.
Straight into my favourites.
verde (957) 2006-04-07 17:26
this is stunning. I have not really ever attempted any kind of portriats but if and when I do, your stuff will be my education.
Homerhomer (4080) 2006-04-07 20:47
Amazing portait, her life is written all over her. I have a book by Nigel Parry, portraits of famous poeple, the similarity between this and his portaits are in extraordinary details, where you can see every wrinkle. Can you tell me how you achieve it, is it just a matter of contrast and sharpening or you have some other tricks up your sleeve.
hamster (104) 2006-04-08 2:07
Fantastic powerful shot. Fist of all, composition and light - just brilliant. But the most important is the realism in this photo. The face expression - it's hard to figure whether she's smiling or not. The jewellery on her fingers are a very big plus.
isabela_sor (47748) 2006-04-08 3:42
This is a truly stunning portrait with great impact! Sharp and her face that tells a long story.....Great picture, Manuel
Thank you for all your pictures
A nice week end
dvlazar (6662) 2006-04-08 18:00
an amazing and fascinating portrait. I had a feeling of ' 'this is creepily good' when i saw it. Amazing lighting - highlighting just the right parts of her body.
Porteplume (3460) 2006-04-10 8:24
I "know" you for a long time now and I've always been overwhelmed by your talent and the numerous lovely images you've posted on TE. But this one - and the one on TL too - has surpassed everything!
I don't know if I express myself well enough but this picture feels "warm" - even with that B&W. We can "read" and imagine her life through her skin and her eyes and you've translated that perfectly on this picture, there is a lot of talent needed for that... Great, great work!
Amicalement - Viviane
marieaude (1196) 2006-04-10 8:27
Hello, very strong portrait of this woman. Fantastic hands too. This is a really great photo. Thanks for going back the next day.
patriik (1935) 2006-04-10 17:59
I`m really impressed. Your portraits are totally outstanding!!! I love them. Your pictures from Asia are the most interesting. I`m planning to visit Thailand in September. When I`m browsing Your pictures I want it more and more and I can`t wait. You are one of my favorite photographers here. Thank You for sharing. Keep doing good job!
kozerog (1288) 2006-04-17 10:19
This is so great, I can't believe. Hi quality, very strong and professional.
bucari (391) 2006-04-18 3:16
a warm congratulations from ur fellow ilonggo. so this is the "model" u were talking about. :) u did very well on her. lines r sharp & the color complements w/ her age.
coco (30439) 2006-04-18 18:41
Splendid work here. The black and white is superb and the composition, as the sharpness, is fantastic.
Really a wonderful photo.
Thanks for share.
asival (5307) 2006-04-24 17:14
Amazing portrait..just Amazing
nihanneke (57) 2006-05-10 17:58
2 points from me aswell - nice to meet you manuel! :)
artsoul (4) 2006-08-07 9:24
beatiful. it makes you stop for a second and think. i keep looking at her eyes then her tons of rings and then her skin. so nice ! !
pgorod (1019) 2006-10-25 9:49
Amazing "depth of field" (I mean the way that this flat image lets you in to the depths of this woman's soul)...
cuneyt-sb (6576) 2006-12-25 10:43
I must do that before but didnt had time , i was thinking what to write, its such a good portrait and such a madness face , she is incredble and you make her endles with those superb shot,
Very well done and conqrats
Kristo (543) 2007-03-14 13:59
Fantastic Portrait with many details of woman face :-)
I loved this incredible Photo.
pracas (511) 2007-11-06 2:23
One of the most impressive portraits i've seen so far...some kind of a sudden calm sets in as i look into her eyes... they talk a lot..
khsu157 (28) 2008-02-28 22:24
seriously sick shot!! sick as in amazingly fantastic! Definitely one of my new favorites. Did you shoot her in a studio?
NickEyes (2) 2009-05-28 2:01
so far this is my fave one!
gmg (4202) 2009-10-25 6:32
Hednaskald (149) 2009-10-28 19:26
Such a beautiful shot!
Her face does indeed tell many, many stories. She is beautiful in a very, very special way. And that twinkle in her good eye, gods, it's stunning.
sydb (579) 2011-07-21 15:38
je ne peux que,applaudir cette image bravo
jerome92 (6) 2011-08-03 14:49
One of the best portrait I have ever seen ...
janmha (54) 2011-09-06 8:47
A master piece shot. Excellent.
asio (40) 2012-01-15 13:46
Manuel, it's gorgeous! It's not just how perfect is this photo, it's amazing how you 'see' or better 'feel' this woman, i can't forget her eyes..
it's soooo.... marvelous
thank you for finding her and sharing!
onphoto (1253) 2013-01-25 6:46
For the moment it is the best photo I've seen in TE. Also the BW is great? What software did you use?
Noel_Byrne (32532) 2013-09-02 9:07
Your gallery is amazing and this photo captures the senses in a few can. It is intriguing and mysterious and filled with experienced and playful character. Wonderful work.
- Copyright: Manuel Librodo (manny) (21833)
- Genre: People
- Medium: Black & White
- Date Taken: 2006-04-06
- Categories: Daily Life
- Exposure: f/8, 1/80 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Theme(s): when i dream i see people [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2006-04-06 22:56
- Favorites: 46 [view]