Photo Essay: “From dawn till dusk, a fisherman’s tale” in Puerto López, Ecuador

Puerto López is a small fishing village on Ecuador’s Pacific coast that generally serves as a launching pad for trips into the Machalilla National Park. And while this is a very good reason to visit Puerto López and we were able to visit places like Agua Blanca and the Isla de la Plata very easily, it’s also a great place for watching a traditional Ecuadorian fishing community in action and for soaking up the laid-back atmosphere. It’s especially refreshing if you’ve just come from the party town of Montañita an hour to the south of Puerto López and need to slow the pace down a little.

So, I was particularly interested in seeing the fisherman doing their thing and this is how I ended up setting my alarm for 5:55am, sleepily grabbing my camera and heading down to the pier to photograph the fishermen unloading the catch of the day. Fishermen compete with each other for prices but, unfortunately for them, there’s no competing with the frigate birds and pelicans that swoop down and fly off with their catch in one swift movement. It was cloudy at daybreak and so the photos ended up having a blueish hue that I really love and evokes that early morning atmosphere that you (or I, at least) don’t usually get to see. As the morning light brightened the photos took on a slightly warmer hue and I’ve tried to show that slow transition in this photo essay.

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