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Michael Robinson-Chavez became hooked on photography after a surfing buddy lent him a Canon AE1 for his trip to Peru. "My mom is from Peru, and I went down there for the first time in 1988 and fell in love with photography," he says. "Peru was just a great place to get introduced to it because there were pictures around every corner." He went on to study photography at Brooks Institute of Photography and San Francisco State University, a move that led to internships and his first job with the Associated Press in Central America. One of his first big assignments for AP was covering the plight of Cuban refugees in Panama. He then spent 4 1/2 years with the Boston Globe where he covered the civil wars in Bosnia and Congo. For The Post, he has covered a variety of national and local stories, including the growing Hispanic community. He is also working on a long-term project on the blending of cultures in the mestizos of Peru.