Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Woman with the Clear Eyes, Awaiting her First Child, La Habana, Cuba, July of 2012

She is now 20 years old and has had her first child. From a little girl swimming just off of the shore in La Habana to a teacher responsible for her own class of children, I have admired and followed her over the past eight years. The portrait above is one of a pregnant, young woman worlds away from that first moment we met.

I remember when she walked into my friend's home with her clear eyes lit by a single bare bulb in the room. Her eyes continue to illuminate the world around her, and have become a source of kindness in my life. Whenever she receives our company we are treated like family. She always serves us with freezing water and the warmest of hearts. I have seen her grow up, make the transition from a curious girl to a less than enthusiastic teenager and back to that same curiosity. She very much appreciates her  portraits and the compliments shared with her from the admirers of her images.

Although being photographed in direct sunlight is anything but easy for her, she has never refused it and like very few with clear eyes maintains her composure throughout. She received her eyes from her mother and has hopefully passed on these eyes, along with her kind demeanor, to her first son. She lives with her mother and stepfather, along with her grandfather and half-sister, in a single room home split in half vertically to allow a sleeping area upstairs. 

Her neighbors have grown accustomed to witnessing my continued desire to document her, yet find it somewhat strange at the same time. To them she is just another girl... but to me she is everything.

I of course look forward to visiting her this summer and to making her portrait once again, along with the portrait of her newborn child.

halim.ina@gmail.com
Halim Ina Photography