Where do I start with this story?
If you search on the internet you'll find many photos of 1 paticular old woman in Havana with a HUGE Cigar sticking out of her mouth. She has strange eye glasses, strange clothes, and pink/red lipstick that looks like it was put on while blind folded!
Needless to say, that woman is a Character!
She poses for people to have her photograph taken, and yes, you do have to pay her a tiny sum of money...but its all in good fun.
So we found out where she 'hangs' out in Havana and searched for her. We searched and searched...but couldn't locate her.
We talked to a few locals, asked some questions.
Turns out the Old lady died only a couple months ago, she was in her 90's.
Well, wouldn't you know it...by pure luck or genious
(i prefer to think it was genious haha)
as we were walking away in disappointment of the news, i walked right passed this local.
I turned to my girlfriend Tosca and said...should I go up to that man and just ask for a photo? He was proud to do so. I asked him to stand in front of the Cathedral in the bg, not only because its a great bg subject, but also to block out the bright sunlight.
Guess you never know how things will turn out!
Thanks for looking
Critiques | Translate
snunney (79973) 2014-01-26 1:59
I have never seen one that size before! Superb capture of this man with a very expressive face and an enormous cigar. The cathedral makes a great backdrop and nicely complements his attire. Perfectly exposed and with excellent colours and sharpness. Thanks for sharing. Have a great Sunday.
rigoletto (34225) 2014-01-26 2:25
hi craig. i opened up the TE gallery today and bang! even didn't know from whom it came from, just rushed in. this is sooo good, my favourite in your gallery so far. i know many pay photos which turn out to be full crap, but this, my friend, with its pose, its worshipping low POV, its well selected BG and beautiful light, and not the least, its charismatic character, is shining out of many many pay-photos. a timeless classico. congratulations for this achievement.
siudzi (32645) 2014-01-26 2:27
An impressive portrait pic this! Absolutely unique and original shot taken so perfectly at the right place and in the right moment. Bravo! Like it a lot!
Have a nice Sunday!
Gigidusud (13649) 2014-01-26 2:30
It's a typical Cuban shot! Impressive cigar and excellent portrait, very nice shades of brown also. Well done!
Have a nice Sunday my friend!
krzychu30 (15344) 2014-01-26 2:52
so,I think size does matter in this case:)right?:)
Great portrait!I like the way you composed the scene.A little bit lower perspective looking up works here really excellently.
Have a nice sunday
nagual2 (1446) 2014-01-26 2:56
Great picture.,thanks for sharing.
emka (73761) 2014-01-26 3:45
Are you sure you are Craig avoiding people in shots?? haha. Isn't it fun to do something unusual? At once I googled Havana woman with cigar and I found a lot of photos of her. And even if you found her, would you post such a standard photo? This is much better, original, so you were very lucky. The cigar is huge and he is posing with nice background. There are sometimes such persons, in Istanbul walks Hodja Nasreddin, somewhere in Vietnam is an old man without teeth but with big cigarette. I do not like paying photos so I avoid them.
i also think it was genius :).
have a great Sunday
Romano46 (16580) 2014-01-26 3:52
una cattura straordinaria alla quale si addice anche la particolarità del colore tutto basato sui toni bruni: una cosa casuale ma che ha inserito perfettamente il bizzarro soggetto nello sfondo di una Cuba dal ricco passato coloniale.
Ciao e buona domenica
pajaran (48931) 2014-01-26 3:53
Interesantan i dobar tekst ...
Lep pogled na gospodina sa velikom cigarom ...
Dobar snimak i kontrast, lepo pokazano mesto i trenutak, lepe boje.
Imajte lep dan za odmor, sve nabolje.
An interesting and good text ...
Nice view of the gentleman with the big cigar ...
Good footage and contrast nicely shown the place and moment, beautiful colors.
Have a nice day to relax, all the better.
PaulVDV (20711) 2014-01-26 3:58
Wow, what a cigar! This one is surely for a whole week.
Very well taken with the cathedral on the background.
Maybe this guy will become the new star on internet ...
Best regards, Paul
Fis2 (82382) 2014-01-26 4:20
Good frame and colors.
Very impressive cigaro!
Sergiom (55279) 2014-01-26 5:17
J'ai eu le plaisir de photographier la vieille dame à quelques occasions.Ses affaires étaient florissantes et elle avait plusieurs jeunes gens autour pour faire sur qu'elle reçoive son du.Cet homme pourrait surement la remplacer. Je crois que son cigare est encore plus long et cette barbe blanche est très avantageuse.La cathédrale est un superbe arrière plan.
Noel_Byrne (21434) 2014-01-26 7:08
Whoa, now that's a cigar! I don't think I have ever seen one like this before, its ginormous! Its sad to hear the famous old woman died, but I think you may have given rebirth to the idea, and I can imagine plenty of people may seek out this man now instead. He creates a fascinating image, and I love that he was so happy to pose in front of the cathedral, as it makes such a beautiful image.
All the brown tones look beautiful together and the cathedral itself looks wonderful too. Brilliant post, and congrats on approaching the man, something I am not very good at.
All the best
ourania (27138) 2014-01-26 7:38
wonderful arrangement of perspectives in this portrait, there's great depth and interaction among all the elements and details included in this composition. I love all the details and textures, the chromatic harmony, the integration of the gentleman in the environment you chose to place him in. I also enjoy his smiling eye and intense gaze. Very fine and effective work, congratulations and thank you!
All the best, have a lovely day,
cornejo (28517) 2014-01-26 11:32
Hi Craig, excellent portrait of the great cigar sir, very well composed and captured in this interesting image with good sharpness, light and color. Excellent and interesting job well done, congratulations my friend. Thanks for sharing this beautiful work.
Good evening and happy start to the week.
Best wishes from southern Spain.
worldcitizen (6519) 2014-01-26 12:10
Cool photo! This man looks happy to pose, and you managed to create a great scene, with all of the brown colors on both him and the cathedral. That really is some cigar!! I like the chosen angle and POV, too. It's too bad about the old lady - I certainly have seen lots of photos of her - but she lived a long and colorful life.
npecanhuk (61562) 2014-01-26 13:05
What a story!
What a portrait!
Wow! A giant cigar I had never seen before!
Your talent for portraits is getting giant too!
I really enjoyed it without any exception!
I have never been to Cuba! Could you answer me a question? Brazil is happily traveling towards its destiny similar to Cuba! I always wanted it to travel towards Norway, Switzerland or Canada! Do you think we're in a good way?
Enjoy your week,
boa (5797) 2014-01-26 13:18
it is sad news to hear about the lovely world famous lady. Maybe this cool gentleman will be famous also:) Neat composition with pleasant brown color tones. But his enormous cigarr and impressive beard steals the show, tfs!
Have a nice evening/
carlo62 (28369) 2014-01-26 14:40
mi dispiace per l'anziana signora, ma l'hai sostituita con un soggetto altrettanto interessante, ripreso da un pov originale e con uno sfondo molto bello.
Diciamo che la fortuna ha accompagnato il tuo genio.
Complimenti per il nome della tua ragazza :)
Saluti dalla Tosca..na
adramad (35625) 2014-01-26 14:47
Wow ... yes sir, that if it is a pure Havano, enough to last an entire evening, and the character is quite an attraction with that huge white beard, as background the facade of the cathedral, complete a masterful portrait of great originality.
Very good management of both the brightness and the sharpness.
The color is great, very well balanced.
Very well done. I love
I wish you a happy start to the week.
Corry (4508) 2014-01-26 20:36
Excellent portrait de ce vieil homme et de son énorme cigare. L'angle de vue a été bien pensé. Bien fait. Salutations.
jjcordier (73704) 2014-01-26 21:49
Le fumeur de havane que tu as trouvé vaut bien la célèbre vieille femme. Cadrage original en contre-plongée pour ce bon portrait dans les tons....tabac!
mesutilgim (80576) 2014-01-27 0:44
Hello dear Craig,
I wonder how does his lungs look like !!
It's a nice capture with many interesting notes. For me a good start into the new week.
TFS and best regards
adidas5nb (4498) 2014-01-27 5:13
now thats some smoke.great pov and angle.really like the architecture in the bg.great flavors of cuba in the frame.
trevormoffiet (2596) 2014-01-28 1:02
Good story and great result. Love the colours. The man is positioned perfectly. Great angle to lift the cigar above the railing and contrast the beard against the door.
ikeharel (53025) 2014-01-28 8:35
First noticed how many tones of brown can be in one shot, Craig.
Wonderful moment taken, the bearded guy with his big cigar, Common-Cuban scene on the streets of Havana, I suppose.
The background with the church's facade is a great complamentary to the main subject.
Nice small advanture with the man told on your note, made me smile now.
My best regards,
InasiaJones (31442) 2014-01-28 18:02
I guess he became the new official figure of Havana, after the old lady died. His name is Ermenejildo Arencibia Griñan and I have him in my gallery as well. Lonely Planet have bought this photo when I came back from Cuba, so he might have appeared in one of their guides since then.
I like your version, which I found original, but was he posing for someone else? If you took him from this angle, it must have been to put emphasis on the big cigar. I also like the church in the background, creating a monochromatic image.
jcpix (11648) 2014-01-28 18:04
First off, awesome title! :)
Secondly, my word...is that a cigar or a tree branch? Holy crap, that's a monster stogie! So, did you follow the old adage...you know, "When in Cuba, do as the Cubans?" :)
Great story too...had you not mentioned it, I would only assume this was a completely candid shot, doesn't appear staged at all. I love that you not only had the courage to ask him for a photo, but that you were keen enough to understand the best option for lighting. I bet most people would have snapped a quickie and been on their way, but this has so much more appeal by carefully choosing the right circumstances and composition.
Like with most things in life, sometimes you just need some luck on your side to get these beauties. This oozes character and the local scene, sweet shot!
Enjoy the rest of the evening. Take care.
Cheers from Az.,
abmdsudi (40174) 2014-01-29 5:53
A superb, very well exposed with all the detail. I love the way you composed this shot, what an obliging model! I think it would have been great if he had lit the cigar. But it's a super portrait as it is. Fantastic advert for Cuban Cigars, Congrats
delpeoples (52731) 2014-01-30 3:15
As Crocodile Dundee would say: "Now THAT'S a cigar!" I can't stop laughing at this beautiful photo, because the guy seems so regal whilst he's smoking the hugest bunger I've ever seen. I love that look on his face, he's absolutely loving himself sick and enjoying that cigar like it's his last. The definition, skintones and depth of field are stunning. I love the characteristic old architecture in the BG, which I have now read is the cathedral in your next photo. Fantastic shot, one of your best.
Thanks for sharing this one
Cricri (101805) 2014-01-30 9:50
Ah punaise quel cigare :-)) c'est super en plus il est assorti a sa tenue, sa peau brune, en somme beaucoup de variétés de brun dans cette image , seul le blanc de sa barbe contraste, j'aime le cadrage, un excellent portrait, compliment
tyro (18884) 2014-01-30 13:11
Geez, that's what I call a cee-gar! I think I'd need two hands and all my strength to hold that thing in my mouth and I'm sure it could last this guy a week even if he puffed away on it constantly!
Funny, though you've "shied away" from photographing people in the past, I think your trip to Cuba has really given you both the incentive and the confidence to approach people and take their pictures. And I think a lot of that was also because you probably found the Cuban people so friendly and approachable.
This really is a stunning picture and you have captured this man close up with some beautiful (and well preservrd) archiecture in the background. Gee, you must have been up real close too looking at your exif data and seeing that you took this at a focal length of 14mm!
wolf38 (30532) 2014-01-31 6:18
Hi Craig, Yes, that is the typical Cuba as we know it. Especially the huge cigar should not be missed at such a photo. But now, in Cuba everything changes. Let us hope that the people feel better soon.
annjackman (18153) 2014-01-31 9:02
I know the character that you refer to through the many pictures of her. However, I prefer the one that you found here. Excellent low view point makes a lovely 'environmental' portrait. I love the warm brown colour of the shiny cathedral door. Brown tones through out make this a charming shot of a real character.
Superb work - TFS.
Kind Regards, Ann
COSTANTINO (51918) 2014-02-02 6:27
interesting portrait of this old man
I liked your story really but I
liked this shot too
no more comments
one shot is one thousand words
have a nice new week
Didi (55145) 2014-02-02 9:58
Very nice scene, impossible for me to smoke such a big cigar :)
I think it was possible to use a wider apperture to isolate the subject from the background
tatadalou (5641) 2014-02-03 18:54
This man is proud to be the subject of your picture and we can see it in a little rictus he has on his face. The size of the cigar is really amazing ! I particularly like the low POV and the few number of colours in the picture, just grey and maroon. Excellent sharpness on th man. Good job !
icesurfer (530) 2014-02-06 14:52
What an amazing and unusual portrait you did create here! The guy really seems so proud, looking sidewise while enjoying the massive cigar. The POV stresses his pose and look, and the white beard is simply striking between the brown tones of the cathedral, the cigar, the vests and his skin.
Good choice of DOF, with the cathedral in the BG sharp enough to add lots of details but without stealing the scene to our hero.
- Copyright: craig macintosh (macjake) (52920)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2013-12-08
- Categories: Humorous, Decisive Moment
- Camera: Pentax K7, SIGMA 8-16mm
- Exposure: f/6.3, 1/320 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2014-01-26 1:44