The Orange Seller – Belen Market in the Amazon

I traveled to Peru for the second time in my life during the spring of 2011. Being there for work and to volunteer for Plan Peru I allowed myself an extra week to visit the Amazon in the north. During a year long trip in South America years earlier I had missed the opportunity to visit this amazing part of the world and always vowed to come back and swim with the Piranhas. Flying into Iquitos I did expect life to be very different then the rest of Peru knowing that most of the villagers live along water only this was like an island within a country. It seemed very odd at first traveling in a motorbike taxi passing mostly bikes and the area actually felt like a coastal village in Africa or Asia, it was truly an amazing place.

Iquitos, the largest city and the hub, once thrived during the rubber days and has since fallen into disrepair. Buildings falling apart, roads crumbling beneath your feet and boats that made the trips up and down the amazon and it’s thousands of arms all look like time has taken their toll. With all that said it’s those exact things that made it so special and laden with character and texture.

“The Orange Seller” is a shot that truly reminds me of the Amazon. I know most people would think of the characteristics to remind them of a trip or their travels, like the river in this case but this man and his life truly make me think of life along the Amazon. This shot was taken while wandering through the Belen market where everyone from all around buys, trades and sells their goods. The famous Belen market and markets like it are the lifeline of these remote locales and without them people would not survive. I can still see this man tossing his oranges into separate piles. He spends most of his days within a small 8×8 wooden area sorting oranges for sale only to take home a little money and to do it all over again. The texture in his skin is a reminder of how hard he works. I really love this piece and I’m so pleased to share it with everyone.

You can see this image and many others this Friday at the F2 Grand Opening Party of “The Viewing Room”. Along with many other peices from my travel I invite you to stop by and share in my experiences and adventures.