Foto Ruta Revisited: The Best Camera Is The One You Have With You Posted on 10 Mar 01:00 , 0 comments

Article by Sharon Salt.

This weekend, I had the pleasure of attending a Foto Ruta tour. Foto Ruta offers weekly photography tours in Palermo and San Telmo, as well as tours based on iPhonography and food photography, and even custom tours upon request.

The tour begins with an overview of basic concepts like composition, colors, and creativity. Then you are given a set of eight clues, scavenger-hunt style, and sent on your merry way to find and take as many shots as possible. The tour closes with some wine and a slideshow of everyone’s best shots.

foto ruta street photography tours of buenos aires 1Emma, the guide, stressed that “the best camera is the one you have with you.” iPhonography, or, taking photos with your mobile device, she argued, is as good as any other photography if you’re willing to work with it. On the day of my tour, in fact, two participants had opted for their iPhones, and at the closing slideshow they showed us shining examples of all that an iPhone could do. I was impressed, and inspired.

I already knew my iPhone camera was good, of course, but I often leave it at home or don’t bother to take it out for a shot. But why not? I couldn’t control the aperture or shutter speed like my DSLR, but the resolution was definitely just as good. And judging by what I saw on the Foto Ruta tour, the final images could be as artful as any.

So I pledged to take my iPhone around with me for a week to see what it could do, and what kind of pictures I might get if I just kept it with me and kept it on my mind. I also pledged to keep Emma, photo guru extraordinaire and tour guide, sitting on my shoulder. Here are some of my shots:

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Emma said, “Color is great, but the absence of color can be equally striking!” Point taken.

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foto ruta street photography tours of buenos aires 4Emma said, “Play with lines! Play with reflection!” So I did. (The second photo is wallpaper reflected in my sunglasses on a table.)

And here is some more reflection:

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foto ruta street photography tours of buenos aires 5Emma also said, “Don’t be afraid to get low. Change your perspective!

I knew there was something great to photograph about this line of orange bicycles for rent, but I couldn’t find the right angle. Though this photo isn’t perfect, following Emma’s advice made this shot much, much better than any of my previous attempts.

And lastly, she said, “You’ll be surprised by what attracts you. But follow it.

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Thank you, Foto Ruta! I’d recommend this tour to anyone: those who aren’t into photography will learn how to start thinking like a photographer, and those who are into photography will get out of their ruts.  (Which, as we all know, are terrible things to be a slave to!)

As for me, from now on, I’ll be keeping a little Emma on my shoulder – and my iPhone in my pocket.