October 26, 2010

Bhaktapur and the surroundings

Looking at the bright side of Nepal, it is not just animal sacrifices.  And this is how I learn to see Nepal: one needs to see Nepal as Nepali sees their own country, or more specifically, their own culture and life.  The concept of country appeared late in human history and sure not going to last longer than the human history.  What makes Nepal is not the country, certainly not their monarchy (which ended 28 May 2008 - with the establishment of Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal).  It is the people, their culture that makes Nepal the Nepal.  Animal activist may see the animal sacrifice an evil act, to the local, it is part of their tradition and culture.  So I learn to see things the local sees.  And still, you can't deny the fact that Nepal is a peaceful country (because of peaceful people) and lots of charm.  By that, you see peace in Nepal.
Here is Bhaktapur, and as much as I hate to shoot postcard pictures as millions already have been taken, to make a mark of being there, I have one here, taken with the mighty Panasonic GF-1 and 20/1.7.  This is a typical "I was there!" picture, I don't suggest one to have to take not not have to take it.
But this one, is a little different.  Here I get a lot closer so although I cannot over the entire building but I do able to capture more detail of the texture, color, and art carving of the building, and more interestingly, one napping on the building that reminds people that the building is still alive.  There are many different kinds of photography, all can be good, and one has to decide his own style and develop from there.
And this one a simple portrait of a beautiful Nepali girl, her tanned skin blend into the ancient temple well, I came around her to get the angle that the direction of light defines the profile her lovely face.  As already covered many times in this blog, particular in Nepal - take your time with you subject!  Don't just fire away pictures.  This one is captured with Canon 5D II.
However interestingly, the last image of the Nepali girl was in fact taken with this temple - Yaksheswor Mahadev Temple - this two-storied pagoda is widely noted for its wooden struts full of erotic carvings, 24 totally.  The temple was named after its builder - the King Yasksha Malla (1428-82).
And as most developing countries, there are always people of has no.  The one here, picking up the small rice grains on the ground to slowly fill up her bag. I don't know how long will take to make a bagful but it strikes me to see how little is in fact needed to survive.  There are also poor people who gives the god, and those even poorer taking those from god, here the god is a transition, a transition of a peaceful channel for those who has a little more to those has a little less.  My suggestion to those travel for photography: center around a story than to center around the idea of taking more pictures.  I too take a lot of pictures, but I will always remind myself to look beyond the image in the viewfinder (or sometime just the rear screen of the camera), otherwise, a picture may not worth a thousand words.
The image here is an elderly woman in front of a hindu temple, her weathered face is almost became wax like, and under the sun, gives an interesting color and reflection.  I slowly walked to the direction so I can use the sun, as well as to use the stone carving as background for this image.
The tourist shirt is also a nice subject, and quite interestingly, it usually gives you some most significant motifs of a culture.
And a nice Nepali girl working on her Tangka painting.  I also shot a short video using Panasonic GF-1 with the shop owner explain his collection, and this is how video-able camera can do their magic for travel - don't leave home without one.

Here is the future of Nepal, and I have to say, this is one of my most impressive finding in Nepal, they are just good students!  Polite, eager to learn and just happy being in their school and care about what they are learning.  Already 3pm, this image was taken when we finally will leave Bhaktapur square, the school is off, and we are heading to Nagakot.

No comments: