I mainly cover the Venezuelan crisis, both breaking news and stories about the economic and social impact on people’s lives.
I had no interest whatsoever in photography growing up; I studied geophysics and I used to own a couple of call centres in Caracas. I wasn’t interested in photography until my former wife convinced me to join her in a photography course. The very first class I fell in love with it and I have never looked back.
My first assignment as a photojournalist was for Reuters. Jorge Silva who was Venezuela’s chief photographer at the time, hired me to cover a protest after the government shut down a TV station. He only used one of my pictures for the Reuters’ service but it felt like heaven, I had never been more proud. I sold the call centres and little by little I became a full-time photographer.
Since then I’ve photographed a wide range of assignments, the on-going Venezuelan crisis, natural disasters, major political and sports events, violence, destruction, compassion, joy, sadness, the entire spectrum of human behaviour and feelings.
The 2010 earthquake in Haiti, without any doubt, was the most painful assignment I’ve covered. At first I felt powerless when confronted with the agony of the people. There were heart-breaking images everywhere and I felt that my camera was the only tool I had to help, showing the world what was happening.
I have dedicated most of my career with Reuters to photographing events that have a great impact on society. For me, having the opportunity to live and share for a brief moment the lives of others, to get involved, to understand realities that I would have never known otherwise, can be an emotional roller coaster but it’s a never-ending learning process. It’s enriching, it’s sobering, it’s exciting and I wouldn’t want to do anything else.