Shooting letters with @verenasmit

To see more photos of Verena’s play on words follow @verenasmit on Instagram

It all started with an old typewriter and some tired expressions. “I began playing with the clichés we hear all the time,” São Paulo visual artist Verena Smit (@verenasmit), says. “I’ll cross out a letter or a word, but make it so it can still be read. While there’s a part that rejects the cliché, there’s also a part that would like to somehow embrace it.”

A bird rests on the back of a capybara (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) in the Paraguay River in Caceres, Brazil, the gateway to the Pantanal. Often referred to as the world’s largest freshwater wetland system the Pantanal is a stunning biodiversity sanctuary which extends through millions of hectares in central-western Brazil, eastern Bolivia and eastern Paraguay. It includes sanctuaries for migratory birds, nursery grounds for aquatic life, and refuges for such creatures as the yacare caiman, deer, and jaguar. Some 4,500 different species live in the Pantanal.
Picture: NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images

Map of Brazil, by Luiz Teixeira, ca. 1586

Note the Portuguese captaincies, or land grants to loyal nobles, along the Brazilian coast. Of the first 15 charters, five were not colonized, 8 were of limited success due to Indian attacks, and only two of these — São Vicente and Pernambuco — were successful right away.

Map reproduced by David Woodward (editor), The History of Cartography, Volume 3: Cartography in the European Renaissance, 2007.