“Photography became an intrinsic part of my philosophy of life, defining the way I understand and approach the world.” – Eduardo Ortiz
Eduardo Ortiz is a Chilean-born photographer whose vibrant imagery encapsulates the essence of streets across the globe.
His passion for photography was ignited during a period of loneliness. Battling with melancholy, he discovered solace in this medium, which provided him with a compelling reason to, as he eloquently states, “step out of his comfort zone and explore the world around him.”
From the outset, he was drawn to street photography, finding inspiration in the ‘eye-opening’ work of masters such as Ernst Haas, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Fan Ho, and quickly became enamored with the sense of freedom it afforded him.
His passion for travel forms the cornerstone of his artistic practice. Living a nomadic lifestyle, he traverses the globe, his trusty Fujifilm X-Pro2 camera in tow (which even survived a dip into the Ganga River!) capturing moments of everyday life on the streets.
“I’ve always been someone who can’t be in one place for too long; I get bored easily. My nomadic lifestyle suits that part of my personality perfectly, and I’m not particularly attached to any one place or family, which makes it easier for me to be on the move.”
Ortiz is perpetually drawn to cities, whether it’s the markets of Cochabamba, the alleyways of Istanbul, or the kaleidoscopic streets of Kolkata – a city which in particular, holds a special place in his heart – where the vibrancy of life provides endless inspiration for his creative vision.
“Kolkata is a street photography paradise. The streets are teeming with life, and every glance reveals a story waiting to be told. The vibrant colors, bustling markets, and warm-hearted people have made an indelible mark on my work.”
Ortiz’s images capture this dynamism perfectly. His impeccable timing, framing, and keen eye for color, resulting in captivating compositions that beautifully convey the essence of each scene.
He possesses the rare gift of being able to ‘discern’ frames everywhere, an innate perceptivity that perhaps Henri Cartier-Bresson was alluding to when he coined the term ‘the decisive moment.’
His images are multi-layered, undeniably captivating at first glance, but revealing even more upon closer examination: subtle details and narratives unfold in the shadows, often escaping notice at first glance.
Upon discovering Ortiz’s work, I was struck by his inclusion of the profound quote by the great Ernst Haas on his website: “I am not interested in shooting new things – I am interested to see things new .”
In an era characterized by short attention spans, where anyone can snap a photo, and vacuous viral content reigns supreme, the challenge for photographers is undeniably greater than ever.
For Ortiz, Haas’ words serve as a constant reminder to transcend the obvious and present the world in a fresh and captivating manner. “It is astonishing how, despite being coined by someone who passed away over thirty years ago, the phrase still resonates profoundly in our contemporary world.”
All images © Eduardo Ortiz