Those Who Wander: LomoAmigo B.A. Van Sise

In December, travel photographer B.A. Van Sise traveled to Spain on a magazine assignment, where he spent much of the month hiking 311 miles along the famed medieval pilgrimage route, the Camino de Santiago. The Camino attracts a wide variety of travelers: spiritualists, adventurers, and wayward souls, seeking redemption.

He brought along with him a Lomography Daguerreotype Achromat Art Lens, and shot portraits of some of the fellow pilgrims he met over several weeks of walking through the wilderness. A fascinating point he mentioned was that many of the people he met took great interest in the unique Daguerreotype Achromat, which had a considerable effect on the process of taking their portrait. They also several times commended him for deciding to carry such a heavy thing in his bag, as many of the travelers he encountered carried carefully planned packs, their contents including only what was absolutely necessary. Here are some of the images he made, and the stories he heard.

Ionut, from Romania, lost his leg at eight years old in an accident with a mechanical crane. Now, he walks the entire 500 mile long Camino from the French border once a year, as a fundraising effort. He does it to raise money for a charity benefiting children’s prosthetics while putting aside a little of the cash each year for a new leg of his wife’s choosing.
Jason left San Francisco for “so many reasons, too many to count.” In the end, making his way into middle age, the reason became simpler and simpler: to prove he could still do it, to do something difficult in the face of his tiring body.
Florian, from Austria, was on vacation in Iceland and realized he had some spare time before needing to return home for his next university semester, so he decided to walk across Spain on a whim.
Richard, from Austria, kills dogs as a compulsion and has walked the Camino all the way from his home- more than 1,600 miles- three times, to atone for it.
Guillermo ended a nearly decade-long relationship with a prostitute in his native Argentina before almost immediately flying to France to embark on the Camino. Visiting every church he found open, he professed to be walking the route out of devotion to his Catholic faith.
Nicholas came from Leipzig on an adventure but ended up squatting in an abandoned shack with no running water, heat or electricity, in the woods along the Camino. He’s stayed there for almost three months and has been joined by two other squatters, fellow Camino walkers from Italy. They offer free juice and snacks to weary pilgrims passing by. When asked why he started walking, his response is clear-cut: “I came to find myself, and follow my heart. Because I was afraid. I was afraid of traveling alone. I was afraid of not having money. I was afraid of being cold, of being thirsty, of being hungry.”
Javier, from Spain, maintains a way-post for weary pilgrims on the side of a desolate area of the Camino, reminding those who stop by that he’s a member of the Knights Templar. The Knights Templar did, in fact, provide medical services for tired and wounded pilgrims- before being disbanded in the year 1312.
Florian, from Germany, turned thirty and realized that he didn’t have too many people in his corner- little family, no friends. “I think my story is a bit unusual,” he said, “I think I am a bit unusual. I don’t want to be around people, too much, I mostly came here to be alone. I’m a little… different. I don’t have any friends, really. I like to be alone.” He plans to re-enlist in the German Army, after completing the Camino.
Pablo, from Chile, walked several hundred miles to the Cathedral of Saint James in Santiago. Asked why he was making the epic journey, he shrugged and said ’well, it was something to do."
Italians Sara and Antonella came to do ‘something fun’, starting all the way back in Rome. It was their second time making the journey, which took them approximately three months. Asked why they did it again, they stated they’d walked the distance again as a way to ‘relive the fun of their first journey.’
Basel came from Belgium, the entire way on foot, over three months. He said he came for reasons cultural and spiritual, before correcting himself and saying that ‘walking is a form of art.’

Try out our homage to the first photographic lens ever, the Daguerreotype Achromat Art Lens, available in the Lomography Online Shop.

You can see more of BA Van Sise’s work on his website and Instagram.

written by Katherine Phipps on 2017-02-24 #gear #people #art-lens #lomography-art-lenses #daguerreotype-achromat-2-9-64-art-lens

Daguerreotype Achromat 2.9/64 Art Lens

The Daguerreotype Achromat 2.9/64 Art Lens is available for Canon EF, Nikon F, or Pentax K mounts (both analog and digital), and many other camera models using adaptors!

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