The Old Roaring Camp Dreams
Growing up in the countryside
of Brazil listening to stories around the fire has a lot to do
with the fascination and the passion I have for many things, one
of them is trains, steaming trains, which was called, at that time
when it ran in the heart of Brasil, Maria Fumaša.*
Every night my family would
gather around the fire to tell or listen to all kinds of stories.
Stories about the man who would swallow stones, the one who would
swallow fire, the other one who would always trick the king from a
very far land (Bogccagio), the era of discovery, the bible,
stories about old civilizations such as Mayans, Incas, Aztecs,
Greeks etc., stories about dead people who would come back to
Earth to scare or to help the living, and stories about a time
when Maria Fumaša would run the rails in the State of
Minas Gerais, a time before I was even born.
My parents and some of our
guests had a special way of telling stories that really triggered
my imagination. I created my own world of railroads and steaming
trains and I dreamed of it until I moved to California and
discovered Roaring Camp Railroad where I could, for the first
time, see and take a ride on an authentic Maria Fumaša.
Moving to California changed my
life not only from the concept of being in another country or
having to learn and speak a new language, but also promoted the
union with my internal self and so it made me grow. I found myself
able to pursue a career in the opposite direction I was in when
living in Brasil. The way photography came to my life, I think it
was meant to be. I met my beloved, who is the one who first told
me about art photography as a career, a thing I was not aware of
at all, and encouraged me to take classes. Thereafter I started to
photograph Roaring Camp and that made it possible to have one of
the subjects I dreamed of to be captured and so preserved through
As a photographer my challenge
is to capture in my images the feelings of curiosity, mystery,
fear, inspiration, passion, beauty, and love that photography has
evoked from my childhood, especially the ones I have carried over
these years in my night-day dreams that so greatly fascinate me.
The importance of photographing
Roaring Camp does not consist only of the fact that it is through
that place one of my dreams came true, but because of its
historical importance. It is a California historical land mark.
The photographs you see here are part of one of my projects of
photographing historical places. I want to photograph every single
space and aspects of Felton's Maria Fumaša; its railroad track,
and its historical objects that have somehow with photography
influenced, motivated, and changed my life. My intention is to
help to preserve and promote it through photography because of its
historical significance and so I am looking forward to having your
comments, suggestions, and patronage.
These images were taken with a
manual camera, Canon AE-1, 50mm lens. They are printed in full
frame on Fiber based paper by myself, and are available for sale
from post card size up to 11x14 sizes - please look at Color for
more RC photographs. Please contact me if you would like to order
or use any of my images or need to hire a photographer. I thank
you very much so.
* Fumaša - As per the Oxford
Portuguese/English, and English/Portuguese Dictionary, Fumaša
means Smoke; however, "fumaša" can also be translated
as "steam," and that is what the translation could be.
Maria Fumaša is a nickname for a Steam Locomotive Train.
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