iae aa eia
Lives in Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Works as a English school coordinator and EFL teacher
Joined on Jan 13, 2011
I was born in Brazil, in a city called João Pessoa. I lived in a few other cities in three neighboring states before moving to where I currently live, about 1,300 miles away down south, Belo Horizonte. Back then, photography was not offered at colleges and universities, I didn't want any other courses, and I never got a higher education. I tried to get in the AirForce—they offered the career of aerial photographer (don't know if they still do)—but I could not get in because they detected a health problem. I started working with social photography. I shot a couple of birthday parties and some portraits, but I wasn't successful. I liked the experience, but I had never been a very social person and the few clients I had I got with the help of my mother.
During this time, I was living by myself and in a different city, and I was not able to prospect any clients by myself or get any references from the few folks I had done work for. I was just to shy to ask for references. I had some issues related to lack of perseverance. I was constantly feeling down since my later teenager years. I ended up giving up and working with motorcycle sales, an area in which I was also unsuccessful because I had to be socially more engaged as well, but I thought that it was going to work just because I liked motorcycles. After a while, I got an opportunity to work at those 1-hour photo labs/shops as a minilab operator. Now I was able to do a better job, probably because I didn't have to have high social skills. I worked isolated most of the time. As a minilab operator, I was considered one of the best at all the places I worked at, thanks to the fact that I loved photography, read a lot of technical literature, and learned with two very good folks how to operate and maintain those machines. One of them had worked at a Kodak laboratory for more than a decade and had opened a photo lab along with two other business partners, the first photo lab I worked at. The other guy was a Noritsu consultant/technitian.
I started getting socially more engaged after I got involved with the church of Christ. If I was as socially engaged as I was after 2 or 3 years attending church and doing volunteering work when I started shooting, the story would have been different. Since I got involved with church, I have been often in contact with Americans and my English improved considerably. It was because of that that I had my first opportunity to teach English, helping some classmates at a course I was attending in which to have English was a very important requirement. My classmates noticed that I liked teaching and that I taught well, and they encouraged me to be an English teacher.
After about six years working at at least four English schools, I got the opportunity to have my own business, which is as a master franchisee for an English school specialized in private classes. This opportunity was offered to me by the same company I had been working for two and a half years as an EFL teacher, but only if I moved to a pretty far away city, which is where I live now. I had terrible headaches when I lived in my previous hometown, but my current hometown is cooler and drier, and it's also better for business, a little more developed, the fried and cooked food is amazing (except baked stuff, nothing special), and the accent is among the nicest in Brazil.
INITIAL INTEREST IN PHOTOGRAPHY
In 1993, I was living in a city called Natal. I was riding a bicycle when I decided to stop at a newsstand located at a supermarket for a quick look at the magazines, as I used to do. I wasn't looking for anything in particular and didn't intend to buy anything, but while I was browsing, I saw that beautiful red glossy cover magazine with lots of SLRs on it, standing on the top shelf. It was the December's 1993 edition of Petersen's PHOTOgraphic magazine. I was in awe, thinking, "Wow, look at that!" (in Portuguese, of course). I had never seen such an appealing cover (uncommon to Brazilian magazines at that time) and that rich content in terms of equipment. I decided to buy a compact Collins Gem Eng-Port Port-Eng dictionary and a calculator in the same week I bought that magazine, and spent the whole month trying to translate most of the magazine's content and converting feet to meters, inches to mili/centimeters, and pounds and ounces to (kilo)grams, and even dollars to royals (our currency, or 'real/reais' in Portuguese)—well, I started doing currency conversion from 1996 onward, as there was no 'real' in 1993, but only a temporary, transitional currency in 1994, and I was still not interested in currency conversions by 1995). I continued to buy issues of that magazine for the next 6 months. At first, equipment ads, gear guides and articles, and shopping catalogs where the sections I read the most.
FIRST JOB IN PHOTOGRAPHY
While I was working there, I had the chance to handle and use some very nice cameras like the Nikon F3 and FM2, the Minolta Maxxum 9xi and X-370, and quite a large variety of Pentaxes, like the K2000, ME, and P30t; There were other cameras from same said brands and other brands, like Vivitar and Yashica. Canons were rare and I don't know why. I can't remember ever seeing one, except compacts. But, two brands I wanted so much to have an opportunity to see live were Contax, Ricoh, and Zeiss. I just drooled over seeing pictures of Contax bodies and Zeiss lenses. Even one or two of Contax compacts. I also wish I had seen more Olympus SLR's. I also drooled over its µ-II.
I'M GONNA ADD MORE LATER.
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