Home| Portfolio| Trips| Extras| About Us| Site Map
Photograph of a typical thatched roof stone house in the peruvian altiplano around Coasa, Peru
Title: Alpaca farmer's rock house
Location: Coasa
Country: Peru
Subject notes: Many of the people living in the backcountry of Peru are still living as they have for many thousands of years. Young couples find a piece of land that looks suitable for alpacas, llamas and potatoes. Then they build a house out of local materials - rocks, moss, dirt, and grass thatching. Over time, they build night-time and foul weather holding pens for their animals with more stone walls. Some complexes eventually grow to cover entire sections of hillside around the tiny house. The people's daily lives are spent taking their herds to pasture land and watching them throughout the day. While watching the herds, the women spin their wool into thread on bobbins they throw in a spin, and with a snapping motion of their wrists, bring them back up to start the spin again. Meanwhile, other family members tend potatoes in nearby fields, a crop that stays fresh for most of the year in the cold and dry high altitude stone houses.
For more information on this area, read our Coasa longitude/latitude confluence visit.
Photography notes: As we walked by the house,
Camera modelE-10
Exposure time1/400 sec
Metering modeSpot
Focal Length34.0 mm
 I watched carefully to get a feel for the available angles and found that I preferred a view from behind one of the stone walls. The wall frames the bottom and lower sides of the picture, adding a setting to the house that matches the feeling of the place: a very cold, windy and rocky place to live. The high altitude lighting (13,800 feet) was a very bright white, making the picture look too blue and cold. Using color balance, I slightly increased the yellow and red tones throughout the photo, highlighting the difference in color between the rocks of the house and those of the fencing, making the house look a little more hospitable and loved.
Trip: Peru