ATIS has officially set-up on Google My Business: g.page/ATISAustralia/
Our Founding Director and Chief Translator, Eric Arturo Torres-Mendieta, has recently been awarded a certification from the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI). This certification confirms his inclusion into the new NAATI certification system which is designed to evaluate competency to practice Translating and Interpreting.
His new NAATI Certificate
This new certification complements his already gained NAATI Accreditation as a Professional Translator (English to Spanish) which has been valid since December 2001 on-wards. In other words, the newly awarded certification is on top of his status of Translator-for-life.
His listing on the NAATI Online Directory
Congratulations to him!
I just wish to share this beautiful quote from Pope (now Pope Emeritus) Benedict XVI:
Even thought translation is not the central theme of the quoted passage, as a translator, Pope Benedict XVI's words speak loudly of how highly he thinks and appreciates the profession of translation. For Pope Benedict XVI, the art of translations in not just a mere human activity of communication between human languages, but rather something blessed with the divine signature, for God, the Creator of heaven and earth, is also, as it were, a translator. God translates His mind and love in a way we humans many comprehend and respond to.
Furthermore, as everything Catholic is, by its very nature, Christocentric, then Christ in the Incarnation is the translation par-excellence. In Christ, the Word, we have the divine language of love in human language and in human flesh. Jesus said "He who has seen me has seen the Father; how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?" (John 14:9). Here we have see what every translation ought to aspire to be: not only a honest reflection of the source document, but such a true (and in Christ's case, living) reflection of the source; to be consubstantial with the source. In other word, a translation should not merely be a means or a pale image of the original, but rather a translation should be so faithful to the source that it becomes, as it were, one and the same with the source. As Jesus, the Divine Translation, said, "I and the Father are one.” (John 10:30)
To me, as a translator, this gives a very high value to the art of translation; indeed, it exalt the work we translators (and interpreters) undertake for it is a collaboration in the work of God. We translators (and interpreters), swear an oath to be true and faithful to the source. In this we are echoing "Jesus Christ the faithful witness" (Revelation 1:5). Hence in undertaking this work of translation, we ought to not only convey meaning from one language to another, but also, more importantly, communicate God's love to our fellow human beings. Indeed, is it not this communication of God's love our duty in every work and action?
Today we have a special post in commemoration of the Patron Saint of Translators: St. Jerome. It's only proper being September 30th, his feast day.
The Catholic Church has given us many heavenly intercessors. These patron saints pray to God unceasingly on our behalf. (Catholics praying to saints is often misunderstood, suffice to say here that praying to saints doesn't mean we can't pray to God directly, indeed we can and should, however just like you can get your friends to pray with and for you, saints are your heavenly friends whom also pray with and for you, the only difference is that they can do it non-stop with perfect love and dedication.)
A patron saint is chosen due to their particular connection with the subject of the prayer. Indeed, many, if not most occupations and professions have one (and sometimes more than one), and Translation is no exception. St. Jerome is our saint.
St. Jerome (b. 340-2 and d. 420) was born in Stridon, a town on the confines of Dalmatia and Pannonia (Croatia). With his passion for books and great thirst for knowledge he went of to study in Rome. Indeed, St. Augustine said of him, “What Jerome is ignorant of, no mortal has ever known.” It was also in Rome where he was baptized in approximately 360.
Unlike many saints which are remembered for their outstanding virtue or peaceful nature, St. Jerome is often remembered for his bad temper! This doesn't mean he was any less holy however. He was so passionately in love with Christ that he used his mighty pen to, lets say, instruct the ignorant. Indeed anyone who taught error was an enemy of God and truth, and St. Jerome went after him or her with his mighty and sometimes sarcastic pen.
He travelled, particularly in Palestine, and studied theology but eventually became ill at Antioch. He withdrew to the wild desert in Syria where he ever increased in holiness and wisdom. In 379 be was ordained. Three years later, in Rome, he became Secretary to Pope Damasus I. However when Pope Damasus I died in 384, St. Jerome's position in Rome became very difficult due to pressure from his enemies (many of them gain by his harsh criticism). St. Jerome was compelled to leave Rome and settled in Bethlehem in 386 where he lived a life of asceticism and study.
It was in Bethlehem where his great works were competed. St. Jerome is best remembered for his revision of Latin translations of the Gospels and Psalms and translation of the Old Testament into Latin from Hebrew and Greek. In simple terms, these translations collectively form the Vulgate. Furthermore, St. Jerome also wrote extensive biblical commentaries.
St. Jerome died on September 30th, 420.
In this fourth instalment, we would like to highlight the image from our 'Services' page. The previous blog entries in this series can be found here: Part I, Part II and Part III.
ATIS Services Page Image
For any website offering services, it needless to say, that their Services page is of importance. Indeed, it is here where they show potencial clients their range of services how their services would help in achieving the client's goals. For ATIS, it's no different; our Services page highlights our range translations and language services.
With this photograph, I wished to represent how ATIS can service all size of clients: from individuals to large organisations. Furthermore, ATIS can service wide range of project sizes: from small single paged documents to large and complex translations projects.
I wished this, no project or client too small or big ability of ATIS, to be displayed with the juxtaposition of the big and small bilingual (Spanish<>English) dictionaries, each with it's respectively sized peg.
What do you think about this image?
In this third instalment, we would like to highlight the image from our 'How the Translation Process works' page. The previous blog entries in this series can be found here: Part I and Part II.
Little Red Dictionary
For our 'How the Translation Process works' page, the image I wanted to display needed to show that we care for our clients. Furthermore, it had to depict what we do; that is, deliver high quality Spanish <> English Translations and Interpretation services.
I believe the photograph does capture the desired message. Would you agree?
The hand, perhaps like the human face but to a lessor extent, can express powerful messages, expressions and emotions. Indeed, the hand is not only a tool but also a most valuable part of non-verbal communication. A hand can tell you to proceed or stop, it can show love and care or anger and aggression.
This little red dictionary is a cute miniature. I knew it would indeed came in handy. Of course, dictionaries and other language recourses are essential to translators and interpreters; they are an important tool for us.
Below is the original colour photo:
(For those wondering, the hand photographed is mine; and yes, I also took the photo with my other hand)
In continuation from last week's blog post, this post will highlight another original photograph from our website.
ATIS Home Page Image
The home page image is important. Indeed, it is probably the fist image a visitor will see.
Therefore I wanted an image that would say both 'Spanish' and 'English'. I wanted an image that shows professionalism, languages, reading, verification, consultation and work with words. At the same time, the image needed to show that we are Australian.
Books, in particular, dictionaries, were my first instinct. Dictionaries and other language references are essential tools for any translator (or interpreter for that matter). The NAATI pen was a nice method to depict writing and work. And, obviously, the tabletop Australian flag was the ideal way to show our Australian-ness.
In addition, I wanted to give a slight hint what, among other specialities, we can do medical/health translations or interpreting projects.
I hope this simple photo contains all the elements I wished to show. What do you think?
(For those wondering, the open dictionary is a Larousse Spanish Dictionary, chosen for it's illustrations.)
As many are aware, earlier this year we developed and launched our new ATIS website. That period was busy. We did a number of things to freshen our home-business. Among some of the things: we updated some of our IT hardware and software, we rethought our marketing strategy, we wrote new page content for the website, and took new photographs for the website.
Taking new original photographs was a fun process but also takes some work. Before anything, one needs to come up with a concept, a message. One needs to consider space, props, lighting, angels, and colour among other thing. Then setting up for the shoot is an activity in itself. Often at this stage, one encounters an obstacle that demands rethinking of the image.
Indeed, taking a good photograph takes time. But the process doesn't end there. Editing the image ready for website display sometimes takes even more time.
Of course not every single image on our website is new nor original. However, a number of our key images are. These photos were taken and edited by myself, Eric Manuel Torres.
Starting with this week's blog post, I would like to highlight some of the original photographs I took for the new website. I enjoyed producing them and I hope you also enjoy viewing them.
To start of this series of blog post, I would like to highlight the photo depicting the "ATIS" letters.
The above photo is the final edited version. If you see closely, the each of the letters is, in fact, two; one white staked on a black. This seems to create depth. The hardwood background gives the image the appearance of a classical look. The image hopefully transmits a sense of age and experience, but at the same time, new and fresh.
The original photograph did not look as good as the final edited image. It looked dull and somewhat lifeless.
This goes to show how some image editing can make a lot of difference on the final look of the photo.
Translators, humble servants of knowledge, often nameless, seldom acknowledged, more erred against than erring, forever looking for the right word.
The above quotation expresses some of the emotions felt by translators and interpreters. History, for the most part, omits the role of translators and interpreters. However without language services empires could not rule over their vast territories, nor could works of knowledge be transmitted from one culture to another. Indeed, much of human history would not have every occurred, where it not for the services of translators and interpreters.
Money make the world go round, or so the saying goes. Dare I say that translators and interpreters make ideas go round. Translators and interpreters are vital agents in the flow of communication, yet we are almost always forgotten. Some think our work is easy, but they fail to see the important and delicate nature of our work.
For example, when it come to literary translations of a novel or poetry, the translator has to be an artist. In fact, the translator has to become a novelist or poet in their own right. As the image above states, translation is "the skillful art of re-creating an equivalent message". This means that a translation must not only convey words or ideas from one language to another, but also express it with the right tone and make it meaningful to another linguistical community or culture. Only a skillful artist can fake a masterpiece; similarly, only a linguistical artist can translate works of literary art while conserving its splendor.
But even with more mundane translations (e.g. personal documents), the translator's role is crucial. It has often crossed my mind that the translator is the only person that truly reads documents. How else reads a birth certificate, for instance, examining each word and feature?
Translators and interpreters are truly powerful people. A single word mistranslated or misinterpreted can change to whole meaning of the message. Moreover, a document well translated or a speech well interpreted can give people and entire communities assess to resources which otherwise would be inaccessible due to language barriers; hence, in this way, translators and interpreters are also social equaliser.
Here in Australia, NAATI exists to accredit translators and interpreters. Being powerful people, the accreditation bears testimony to their qualifications, language proficiency and ethical conduct. (Of course, NAATI accreditation dose not guarantee quality, but it is a good point of reference; other reference points include their experience and academic knowledge.) For this reason the Australian Government instructs, as it should, that a NAATI accredited translator/interpreter must be used to undertake work with legal implications. However, NAATI accredited translators/interpreters are also betrayed by the Australian Government as it makes use of non-NAATI translators/interpreters. Is it too much to ask to practice what they preach?
In any case, I suppose, this goes to show how widespread and pervasive is the erroneous idea that translators and interprets are unimportance. Even in our modern age, translators and interpreters are taken for granted. Indeed, as the opening quotation states, we are still "often nameless [and] seldom acknowledged".
So next time you read a work originally in another language or relax to a movie, TV show or documentary filmed in another language, or browser a webpage originally written in another language, please pause and give thanks to translators and interpreters.
Eric Manuel Torres, Executive Director (CEO) of ATIS shares thoughts on the Translation and Interpreting industry in Australia and also news about the family business.
Also to view our Founding Director and Chief Translator's (Eric Arturo Torres-Mendieta) LinkedIn profile, please click below: