According to Lisette Poole, a freelance photographer based in New York City, whose clients include the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Newsweek, “Of course, there’s the color, music, and an intense Caribbean vibe down there, but I’m especially struck by how remarkably prideful, joyous, and present Cubans can be. I had expected to find them depressed and downtrodden, but most often the opposite is true. They carry themselves with an attractive dignity and always make the most of whatever tools they have for enjoying life.”
As an example of Cuban openness, Poole mentions frequently encountering people on the street in animated conversation, displaying humor, warmth, and friendly charm, even though the individuals involved were perfect strangers. The opportunities for colorful street shooting are endless. “As a rule, Cubans are comfortable with each other in ways most Americans aren’t,” says Poole.