Passion for Abstraction

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Passion for Abstraction. © Carlos Ocando.

Nature and abstraction are not words that you hear together often, most of the artists and photographers try to express nature in realistic terms, beautiful landscapes, lakes, trees, rivers, bayous, and wildlife. I also enjoy doing this kind of approach with my artwork, but sometimes I also enjoy to experiment and try to see a different way trying to explore the abstract forms in nature.

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Abstract Branches Texture. © Carlos Ocando.

By exploring the abstract form in nature you can focus on small details, points of light of simple the different forms interacting on a tree bark or in a monumental landscape, the most important aspect of abstraction is light, texture, shape and color. This is a interesting approach for me, because sometimes I find more interesting the small parts of the whole scene instead of the complete vista. So you could create several views from the same place, and instead of having one image you can go home with a complete portfolio of the same place.

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Light, Texture and Shape. © Carlos Ocando.

I encourage you to go out, or in the studio and explore the abstraction in nature or in other subjects that you may also like, many artists and photographers also explore the abstraction with the human body, cars and wildlife animals. So the sky is the limit. Remember to be bold, playful and a explorer of light.

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Leaves in the Shadows. © Carlos Ocando.

If you have any question or comment please feel free to write in the comment section.

Thank you

Carlos Ocando

Courage

The most courageous thing I have ever done in my life happened a few years ago. I was 24 years old, and I wanted to be an Electrical Engineer, I was in the 10th semesters and finishing my thesis. My whole family had great expectations for my future as a professional. They always said that i was very smart and that I would have a bright future as an engineer. As a matter of fact, I come from a family of engineers. My father is a Mechanical Engineer, my mother is a Mechanical Engineer and my brother is a Mechanical Engineer, so they expected that I would become an engineer too.

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The Way. © Carlos Ocando.

At that moment I felt empty and lost. I didn’t like my work during my internship, and I felt that I would have to work on something that I didn’t enjoy or like. During that time I started to read several inspirational books, one quote from a Wayne Dyer’s book really moved me. It said: “Don’t die with your music still in you”, I also felt very inspired by the Conversations with God series written by Neale Donald Walsh.

Inifinte bw bInfinite. @ Carlos Ocando.

I became inspired to focus my energy, thoughts, and efforts on becoming what I really wanted to be and do. Recently my heart felt moved by nature, art and photography. So I decided to take the most scary and risky thing I have ever done in my life. I decided to become a Professional Fine Art Photographer. Every body was against me at the beginning, I felt a lot of pressure and stress, but with the support of my now wife I kept going.

_DSC2262Gift. @ Carlos Ocando.

I started to buy books, tutorials and got my hand in every photography book I could find. I started to work as a photographer for a magazine covering small events,  and participated in some photography contests with photos of nature. Eventually I won the respect of a few master photographers, and one of them offered me the opportunity to work with him and to teach me how to accomplish my goal. Since then I have a number of awards, and I’m represented by some galleries including in NYC. Everyday I thank God for the gift of my life and that I have had the courage to make that decision and be who I am today. If you have an idea, a dream or something that you want to do, and feel that is important for you don’t abandon it. Follow your heart and your bliss and don’t the naysayers to make you give up. You can do it my friend, YOU CAN DO IT…

Carlos

Just Be…

Most photographers worry too much about what people may think about their work, sometimes they try so hard to please everyone that they stop having fun and deviate from the pleasures of photography. This of course happened to me too, asking everyone what they think about my work, uploading to 500px, flickr, more likes please!, more likes!.

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Walking around Houston Museum District. ” © Carlos Ocando.

The biggest step you can make as a creative person is being yourself, enjoy what you do, everything you do and explore should be centered in your vision, your message, your passion. I prefer to make horrible, boring technically wrong photos but have fun doing it, and with a purpose in my hearth and mind. Even go beyond that and let your awareness become an arrow traveling trough an space of bliss and joy directly to your goals.

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Keep your eyes open, there is always something to be seen. © Carlos Ocando.

There will always be someone who will criticize your creations, don’t take it personal, their opinions talk more about them than about you. Be free, fly, act as there was no one looking what you are doing, then realize that you are dancing like a stupid hunting butterflies with your lens and other crazy stuff and having a great time, do it, if being you means doing “inappropriate things” DO IT (as long you don’t hurt anyone or yourself).

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Sometimes in the city you can find some interesting ways to explore nature. © Carlos Ocando. 

As always be free, happy, funny, “stupid” and unique.

Carlos “The stupid nature lover/hubby/dancer/crazy/metalhead”

Faith

What is faith?, that’s a question a lot of people keep asking to themselves and to religion leaders, they will all tell you that faith is believing every word in their book of preference (Bible, Quran, etc…), this is a concept that is difficult for me to accept, how can I believe something that happened 2000+ years ago? (please don’t take this personal, I respect every religion and belief system). There is also the part that I must believe in something blindly, so for a long time I had no faith, I only believed in what I could touch, smell, hear and of course see. 

_DSC6124-EditLooking beyond the tangible. © Carlos Ocando.

I’m writing about all this because I have had some problems with my faith in the course of my life, right now I can tell you that I have faith, I have shown myself that affirmations, believing before seeing works!, even in the moments where I feel more disconnected from the universe and the peace of the now. A good example is something that happened to me yesterday, I felt a little down and went to the park to take some photos and relax, after a few minutes I came a cross with a wooden bridge going over a bayou, and at the end of the bridge there was a something that looked like a jar.

_DSC6141-Edit-2“Keep seeking, God is there for you NO MATTER WHAT”.© Carlos Ocando.

So when I start to walk the bridge I can see words written in the sides and on the floor, there was one that captured my attention: “Keep seeking, God is there for you NO MATTER WHAT”. In that moment I understood what real faith is, it means that God (or the universe, Buddha, Jesus or any name you want to give it) is with us, is there to cover your back, to be with you in the most difficult times, and the not so difficult, he (she?) is always with us, inside of us, around us, is the energy that moves everything and gives us what we ask (even bad stuff). I felt lighter and very moved even a few tears came out, but they weren’t tears of sadness those were tears of joy, everything looked magnificent and holly, and every message I read really moved me in a good way, I kept walking till I reached the end of the bridge, at the end I saw this…

_DSC6145-Edit“God listens!, prayer is Powerful”. © Carlos Ocando.

It was a jar full of chalk so every stranger passing by could write their own words, it was a very special day for me, and after all this time I understand what faith is, every moment that I needed it I have received a surprising answer from our dear friend, the only difference is that yesterday I was open to this beautiful message. I hope some day I can get to meet the beautiful people who made all this, and they are reading this I thank you from the deepest part of myself. Thank you!

Carlos

  

Creativity

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Self-portrait of a nature lover.

Creativity is the energy that moves the designer, the motivation of the inventor and the muse of the artist, we all are involved in creative endeavors in one way or the other, even most scientist use their creative mind to come out with solutions for our problems and solve the mysteries of the universe. Albert Einstein was the one who said “Imagination is more important than knowledge” I think he was right, imagination is creativity’s fuel.

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Imagination can take you beyond reality into the realm of dreams.

Let yourself go beyond fear of making a mistake or rejection, the more you allow yourself to be in the moment, and connect with your heart the more creative you will be. Creativity happens when there is a holy connection between your mind and your soul, that’s why we feel so good when we are creating, and from that connection we get to meet one of the most important energies in the universe.

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“Only passions, great passions can elevate the soul to great things”. Denis Diderot

Passion is the greatest and most beautiful outcome from being creative, this energy will propel you into create more and more, that’s why creative people is so passionate about what they do. So be creative, enjoy the process of creating, imagining and exploring, and as always have fun!.

Carlos

Hope is…

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Have you ever catch yourself in a problem that seems so big that you feel you won’t be able to get out of it?, in some moments in our life we feel that the floor under our feet is crumbling and that in any time we will fall to never get out again. I have been feeling this way in the last couple of days, but the words from my wife and my family inspired me to rose beyond those feelings of fear and frustration.

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I think hope is just another name for faith, not necessarily a religious faith, but a certainty that everything is going to work out, that you are going to be OK, it is also true that is very difficult to let go of control and just trust. That’s why is so important to have the support of other fellow humans (wife, family, friends, even strangers), they will see all the problem in a different perspective, and will suggest different ways to approach the situation.

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We should also remember to go beyond our ego and accept that sometimes we need help, and sometimes we also must give hope and kind words to other brothers in need and desperation. Here you have an amigo, any person in need for help just write me a message or let me know in the comments section and I will give my best to help you out of your hole (I don’t have money but I do have my will to help you in any other way I can).

Follow your heart, your passion, your bliss!, every second of your existence, you don’t need anything to connect with this powerful feelings inside of you, just give yourself the permission to feel good, loved and lucky of living in this beautiful place called planet earth. Hope is not lost…

Thank you.

Carlos