Photos by MigraZoom Participants
Although border patrol has tightened over the past decade, there are still many people who cross from the Mexican border illegally every year, and it’s not an easy task. After years of documenting migration in Mexico, Spanish-born photographer Encarni Pindado, began a new project that allowed undocumented migrants to photograph their journey across the southern border of Mexico and Guatemala, a point where many regroup as they continue North to the US.
Of course, this project would prove far more difficult and unsafe if done on the US border, but still, it’s a similar look into the journey. The project, titled “MigraZoom,” launched in early 2013 and was supported by a grant from the United Nations Development Program. In collaboration with other Mexico-based photographers, 200 Kodak cameras were handed out to actual migrants, a quick photo workshop was taught, and they were instructed to move up the usual migrant path, following the railroad lines, to gather more cameras along the way. By the end, MigraZoom collected almost 70 percent of the cameras that were given out, and in turn, each participant was given prints to keep. Also, large printouts of the photographs taken were displayed in parts of southern Mexico where Central American migrants travel through. Some photographs were even displayed on the cargo trains that migrants typically boarded.
The few photos below were taken by migrants throughout their own journey, and were sought out for further observation from Pindado. The names of the photographers are left out to protect their identity. It’s noted by MigraZoom that many have likely crossed the US-Mexico border without documentation.