If you've never been to Havana, its almost impossible to know for sure just how poor the people are, and how the infrastructure is in shambles in many places.
I think most of us know this, as its not a major secret around the world. However, when you get to see Havana in person and you see the buildings, its astonishing and unforgettable.
It made me think about what is the country and its government doing to help re-build? Sure, some buildings were under construction, but most were left to sit and decay in the hot sun and the salty ocean air. Just like this building.
As I was walking by across the street taking in all the architecture, i noticed this little tiny boy. He's so tiny compared to the building he almost goes un-noticed in the photo.
Now i know he's only playing, but the way he was moving the fallen pieces of the building, it made me think that maybe he'll tackle the rebuilding process of Havana all by himself! If you want a job done right, you gotta do it yourself - and why not start at an early age!
Hope you like it
Critiques | Translate
emka (79926) 2013-12-13 23:19
Hi Craig, You are very fast, only yesterday you returned and it is the second photo on TE! Fantastic document from havana. Not only just attractive photo of abandoned house for photographer, but real life, specially with the small boy. My son was in Cuba a few years ago, they travelled around a lot, so I know how it is there. It seemed to me that the situation has changed since then, but probably not so much. And shortage of everything - well I know this also from my own experience.
How beautiful these building were!
have a beautiful weekend MAlgo
SnapRJW (31469) 2013-12-13 23:26
The boy may be small but with his bright yellow shirt he shines out beautifully in this shot Craig. I hope his energy continues into adulthood and he does indeed make a positive difference to his country! We see the obvious charm of the dilapidated building but living in them is not something most of us would wish to do. A wonderful shot with a superb note. Warm regards Rosemary
tatadalou (6341) 2013-12-13 23:41
So, he will have some much work ! I only know Havana from TV documents or TE pictures and it seems to be full of old and abandoned jewels. Nice framing that shows the reality of this city and hard life of its inhabitants. This little young boy is ideally placed in your composition.
PaulVDV (22737) 2013-12-13 23:58
Indeed the boy looks very small in comparison with the huge doors and the very large arches of these stately buildings but in his yellow blue clothes he is noted very well.
Won't the political system change in the near future? I heard recently that the two currencies system will disappear.
On the other hand, the country appears to have very good and for all its inhabitants affordable healthcare facilities.
Best regards, Paul
CLODO (30597) 2013-12-14 2:57
The boy is so little, but so important in your picture, he changes the way we can interpret it. We notice him by his clothes colors. He seems to wear a sketch of the future house to be built, and shows it to the red butterfly on the pillar! hard work!
have a nice WE
timecapturer (49286) 2013-12-14 3:02
this is just wonderful. An opportunist image but one that is just irresistible and beautifully evocative. Sheer genius seeing this image and being able to interpret it so sensitively. As always you have come up with something creatively original and sublime. Top marks mate.
Enjoy the weekend - B.
snunney (84931) 2013-12-14 4:03
These façades and no doubt the buildings behind are in evident need of repair, nevertheless they still have much charm about them. The presence of the little boy quietly playing on his own in his yellow top is a definite bonus bringing the scene to life and adding to the storyline. Very good rendering of the textural detail.
ktanska (24926) 2013-12-14 4:51
Well, at least he does not run out of tasks! The note and the view describe the state well. There is huge work and every man is little in front of it. Appropriately the two buildings have pretty similar style, but different condition.
siudzi (33973) 2013-12-14 5:01
What a great observation here! It was taken with a really great sense of the moment. The working boy looks so cute here with the unique and eye-catching architecture around. Bravo! Excellent work!
Have a nice weekend!
Sergiom (61172) 2013-12-14 5:46
Une pierre à la fois. Et quand ce sera terminé, il devra surement recommencer. J'aime qu'il soit si petit dans l'image ce qui accentue l'envergure du travail à faire.
chawax (19476) 2013-12-14 6:34
I imagine Cuba street scenes are a great subject for photography ! I love this one, the contrast between the decayed building and the little boy. Interesting note as usual !
Noel_Byrne (24852) 2013-12-14 8:37
Touching picture, for both your note and the image of this tiny little man rebuilding a nation. These buildings are beautiful, and they tie into the romantic notions I have of Cuba (like the cars!!) well. Fine design, classical columns, traditional arches. The decay you mention though is evident, especially the building on the right.
I really like how the little builder considers safety first too and has donned a hi viz jacket before embarking on this mammoth task :)
All the best
saxo042 (37578) 2013-12-14 9:32
The little boy seems to have made progress here, trying to repair the building. His building is definitely in a much better shape the the other one, to the right. An interesting picture and note, a perfect TE contribution!
worldcitizen (7071) 2013-12-14 11:14
Nice view! I think this little boy has definitely been rebuilding; his place seems to be in a bit better shape than the one next to him!! I always enjoy the arches and covered walkways that are prominent in Havana architecture. It's just a shame that these buildings are crumbling to the ground. I've heard that collapses are a frequent occurrence.
rychem (24022) 2013-12-14 22:44
This here is a very interesting architecture, but clearly in need of refurbishment, nice shot with perfect composition, the little boy is very well placed
delpeoples (53167) 2013-12-14 23:07
You're definitely off to a great start with all your people shots and this little fella is adorability in action. let's hope that the hope your title holds, holds true for this little man and his country. I don't know much about Cubá - except of course the obvious clichés, so I'll be following your photos with interest. The architecture is so shabby yet attractive. A great subject for us photographers, but a probably nightmare for those that have to dwell in and around it. Great work, and your note rivals those of Noel.
annjackman (19937) 2013-12-14 23:08
I love this for the small boy in yellow and blue carrying something almost too large for him. I also enjoy that you kept him small in the frame so that we can appreciate his surroundings. I am wondering whether this was taken on the Malecon by the seafront as it reminded me of a picture that I took.
Very well taken and TFS.
Kind Regards, Ann
p.s. is this picture a little softer than your usual posts? I just wondered whether a touch more sharpening is needed.
jjcordier (76858) 2013-12-14 23:11
Ce garçon est tout petit mais c'est un élément majeur dans ta composition, comme si il commençait la rénovation de cet immeuble en mauvais état!Très bonne photo.
Graal (97861) 2013-12-15 3:12
fine title, image and composition. Good shot. Interesting reportage about the daily life at Cuba.
Have a nice day.
Cricri (107306) 2013-12-15 6:01
Si petit devant ces grand bâtiments dans un triste état surtout celle de droite, c'est vrai que ce petit bonhomme donne comme une "impression" de vouloir le remettre en état, sympathique présence en plus ces vêtements colorées donne un côté de gaieté a cet endroit
jcpix (13688) 2013-12-15 8:05
Looks like this little guy sure has his work cut out for him, but it would appear that he's already up for the task. Brilliant inclusion, his size gives this a terrific sense of scale and a added little burst of color to go along with the red shutters.
My kind of shot too, the abundance of texture and worn architecture is an instant attraction. That, coupled with the building next door and its more well kept appearance is a contrast of strong proportion.
There's one thing missing however.....a wide angle!?? :) Really cool shot, sharp and detailed as always and carrying with it some emotion of the current state of affairs. You must have gone crazy with all of the weathered and dilapidated buildings to photograph. :)
Can't wait to see what's next.
Gigidusud (16299) 2013-12-15 9:55
Great framing on the typical façades of Cuba. Well seen the inclusion of the little boy. Well done!
Have a nice week my friend,
adramad (38573) 2013-12-15 11:31
A sensational photo reportage, this closed-up on part of the facades of the two buildings, the image shows the decay of these buildings, which in past seasons, were part of this pearl of the Caribbean, of which today only is the shell .....
Sensational sharpness and brightness.
Good start to the week.
Sonata11 (33283) 2013-12-15 19:13
lovely composition beautiful facade with cute a little boy and great POV, super sharpness, fine details, splendid light and wonderful colors, very well done.
All the best, Barbara
holmertz (41753) 2013-12-16 9:30
I have seen similar kinds of disrepair mainly in parts of Africa, where it seems nothing has been maintained for decades. The main difference seems to be that the buildings in Cuba must originally have looked better. I can't say whether that makes the decay easier to bear or actually worse. That little boy really carries the whole composition on his shoulders. I'm glad you saw him.
krzychu30 (15498) 2013-12-16 11:25
excellently noticed and captured daily-life scene from Havana.Accurate observation-looks really like this boy takes the matter into his hands.
On the other hand I´m wondering if the streets would be still so picturesque and charming for us tourists if all the houses would be restored.
Have a good day
tyro (20696) 2013-12-18 3:32
Once again you have given us a fascinating and informative note and a wonderful photograph to illustrate it. And, you know something? - that little fella certainly appears to be doing a grand job - just look how much smarter that building on the left is compared to the one on the right!
A brilliant capture with lovely light and colours, perfect exposure and stunning sharpness. And perfect timing too - just as the little worker is lifting a bit chunk of stuff to repair his home!
adores (37601) 2013-12-22 12:47
Good shot! I like the difference between the two buildings and the older one looks so interesting! Great composition with the little boy, his t-shirt really stands out and he looks so small compared to the buildings!
Mics (687) 2013-12-25 22:32
Interesting shot! The presence of your "little" subject as Clodo puts it can change the way we interpret it. As in this case, the boy playing and holding a tile that may have been a fallen object from the building be seen as a "fitting image" of "rebirth" in contrast to the decrepit building on the right.
Yes, poverty in Cuba is well-known and that's the sad part of how socialism failed to deliver its promise of equity and progress. The country has not totally opened up to trading, hence the absence of products normally present in countries wherein corporations operate to satisfy the many "wants" of people created by a capitalist system.
I've watched from the CNN or BBC news (not really sure of the channel)in the not so recent past (if I am not mistaken) that the Cuban government is allowing the opening/operation of "small businesses" owned and operated by Cubans, on a regulated basis, since all economic-related activities before are under the control of the state. Yes, the government may be doing something to address poverty...but taking care of their heritage as exemplified in the Cuban architecture may not be first on their agenda as they may be more ideologically preoccupied.
Overall, I like the contrasting message and interpretation this image can bring to the viewer.
Very well done Craig!
- Copyright: craig macintosh (macjake) (57074)
- Genre: People
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2013-12-11
- Categories: Daily Life
- Camera: Pentax K7, Pentax 50-130mm F2.8
- Exposure: f/7.1, 1/80 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Map: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2013-12-13 23:01