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Travel Photography: Habana, Cuba – The City


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Travel Photography: Habana, Cuba – The City

I can only imagine what Havana must have been like in the 30’s-40’s. It must have been one of the most exciting cities on earth. People walking around in the sunshine, smoking a cigar, drinking rum and all that to the sound of amazing music. Now the city’s reality is quite different. There’s not much money to maintain the facilities, and unfortunately, it shows. One very cool thing though is that you can access pretty much all the roof tops… try that in NewYork City. And here’s one. They use it to store their stuff, grow some plants and …. install their TV antenna to get access to satellite TV.

Here are a few of the shots I took in Hanava of the buildings and environment:

DHA48961 Travel Photography: Habana, Cuba - The City Guest Bloggers Photography Tips

ISO 200 | f/8.0 | 1/180 | 35mm

Action used: Ellie’s Field of Dreams, Fusion Photoshop Action set

Here’s another roof top, taken at 5am when the sun is rising. You can see the nice orange color of the sun rising in the back. We had to go through a spiral staircase to access the roof top. The stair was welded at the ground floor but…. the rest was held in place using phone cables wrapped around the handrail and attach to the building. Pretty scary when you’re 225 lbs. and carrying your camera gear 🙂

DHA54901 Travel Photography: Habana, Cuba - The City Guest Bloggers Photography Tips

ISO 800 | f/5.6 | 1/120 | 30mm

Action: Urban Revival, Fusion Photoshop Action set

Would you send your kids to this swimming pool? Actually it was empty. In the winter the Cubans won’t swim, the water being too cold. That didn’t prevent me from climbing up the ladder to get a great view of the city.

DHA50051 Travel Photography: Habana, Cuba - The City Guest Bloggers Photography Tips

ISO 200 | f/2.8 | 1/6000 | 32mm

Action: Slumber Party, Fusion Photoshop Action set

This last one is more of a sentimental one for me. It’s the main lobby of what use to be the Bank of Montreal. It’s an absolutely gorgeous building that no longer serves any purpose. The view from above simply extraordinary, just be careful on your way up the stairs, they are slowly crumbling away.

DHA61881 Travel Photography: Habana, Cuba - The City Guest Bloggers Photography Tips

(9 Exposures) ISO 400 | f/11 | 1/10@20 | 16mm

Action: Sentimental (+ HDR), Fusion Photoshop Action set

I appreciate the spectacle of nature and revel in the creativity of technology. Being a photographer, in many ways, combines these two fascinations. See me at or email me at


No Comments

  1. Adita on April 5, 2011 at 10:17 am

    Wow I do not remember much as I was only 5 when I left, it is a shame it has become so run downOnce a gorgeous city as my mother has told me time and time again. I can only like most Cuban visualize a day of hope.

  2. Tammy on April 5, 2011 at 10:27 am

    thanks for sharing. Love to see your travels!

  3. Destination Wedding Photography on April 5, 2011 at 11:48 am

    Beautiful work! When traveling for our destination wedding photography, I love to roam the area and enjoy the scenery that is scarce here in the states. These countries with a very low economy really make for some beautiful photography. Could you imagine renovating some of these building and using them as a studio? I feel like we should be charging even more when doing destination weddings, but many time our clients are stretching their budget to pay our travel expenses plus our normal rates. I can’t wait till my son gets old enough to where we can all travel to these beautiful destinations around the world and capture the beauty around us. Again – very impressive work!

  4. Salt Lake City Photographer on April 5, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Wow, that’s pretty incredible to see. How I would love to have seen Cuba in its hayday. Thanks for sharing these.

  5. K. SOLEO on April 5, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    I have always wanted to go to Cuba!! How did you get in? Travel is difficult, isn’t it? Any suggestions? (please forward)

  6. Daniel Hurtubise on April 5, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    Thanks everyone for the nice comments :)Im definitely going back next summer but i will be lining up a few models before. I saw some amazing places for portrait photography you’re so right.Travelling was very easy for me since im from Canada. But i met someone from Denver who did travel to Toronto then Habana. He goes several times a year so i guess it’s not even a problem for him.

  7. donna shelby on April 7, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    I’m so excited ! I just bought your fusion set! Crazy what makes us photographers happy! Thanks Jodi!

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