Sunday, August 26, 2012

Saturday, August 25, 2012


They say time waits for no one,
But I saw the hands of time standing still;
Where am I?
Who is out there?
I know I am trapped..
But by who or what?
Someday, somewhere,
Some will find the switch;
And I'll be free

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I took a picture in my mind

I read somewhere that a photographer should be able to take a picture in his mind, even when he/she doesn't have a camera in hand. I think this is a good start for training, and in exploring our imaginations. Of course, if you have a camera in hand and you are right in front of a decisive moment, you should never miss that moment.

Today I was having brunch at my college canteen. I chose a table in the corner, as I ate my buns, scrambled eggs and sipping ice tea, the sun was shining down on my table. I also felt the warm heat of the sun on my face. Simutaneously, the reflected light from my plate hit my eyes. The sunlight wasn't harsh, I was sitting alone, I cannot see myself as there was no mirrior. But my senses told me that it was a perfect lighting for a photograph. So in my mind's eye, I picture myself from the opposite end - eating and sitting alone on a table, sunlight hitting some parts of my face and my hair, and the reflected light from my plate highlighting my eyes. That would have made a pretty picture, whether it was me or any other person. 

And just opposite to me, there was a girl sitting alone as I was, sitting under the shade of a tree. She was also eating her lunch. There was a streak of sunlight shining through the branches of the tree. It highlighted her hair. And below the table, one of the campus dogs was deep in his sleep. I captured that in my mind, it was truely a beautiful frame. 

Sometimes, its good to take a break from clicking and just enjoy things as they are. At the same time, in my imagination, I never really stop photographing. I endlessly makes frames from the things which I see.

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Grammar of Photography: A few thoughts on Photography

Photography was first a scientific invention. It immensely simplified the art of image making. Soon after its invention, photography became not only a tool for image making, but also a medium of expression. By the turn of the early 20th century, it was slowly accepted as a form of visual art. While other forms of image making such as painting and sculpture were limited only to the elite class, the intervention of photography gave access to the world of image making even to the lowest economic class. It became so accessible that it is used in almost all walks of life. It is the fastest medium of communication; as the saying goes ‘seeing is believing’, photographs do not require letters and symbols to be read. Anyone who is not visually disabled is literate to read photographs and interprete it in his/her own understanding. And the act of taking photographs as Susan Sontag has said is ‘a way of certifying experience’. The millions of images which have been recorded by the camera are manifestations of experienced events. Even when one did not experience those recorded events, it still creates a new experience to the viewer.  Photography guides the viewers’ perception on things in various ways, be it positive or negative.

Photographs have a spell of its own, the camera is the magic wand; the shutter when released activates the magic spell to create a picture. All it takes is just a few fractions of a second, which requires lesser time than uttering a magic spell. The still image created again has a life of its own. Though silent; it can speak a thousand words.  Photography is a way of life which records visual histories of individuals, families and countless areas of social and community life throughout the world. Through photography, a person writes his/her visual autobiography or helps write the visual biographies of others. It is a never ending process. In our present day, the pictures uploaded on the social networking sites is one example of such visual biographies. One may selectively upload his/her pictures, but his/her friend will also upload different pictures of their choice. Moreover, for the different series of photos, the photographer cannot be the same throughout. Therefore, there can never be a single author in these biographies.

Language is not confined only to speaking and so is with grammar. Languages can be spoken with incorrect grammar and the intended message can be still perfectly understood. The same way, like many other visual art forms, photography is a language. Moreover, it is a powerful grammar for expression. Where words fail, photographs summed up the parts of speech. In this age where the camera is at the reach of almost everyone, photography is the grammar of expression – both visually and verbally.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Home Sweet Home: Aizawl

 It was an unusual day in November, I was at Hangi Lungleng Tlang, enjoying the picturesque of the sun setting over Aizawl. The clouds went pale grey but there was no wind. I stood there at the hill observing the beauty of our city Aizawl. Suddenly, mist slowly flowed in from all directions. It felt like a dream; the clouds slowy covering  the entire city as if someone had cast a spell on it. Showers of blessing on a winter's evening. Soon the view was also covered by mist. It was all white, it felt like a dream. It was a cold unusual winter's evening. The droplets of rain slowly decreased and the curtain opened once again. The sun rays slowly teared up the heavy grey clouds. It felt like the angels have come to liberate us from darkness.  Our city has not vanished after all. I have never experienced the beauty of my city like this  before. The sun continues to shine through the clouds in glory till it goes down in the horizon. As twilight peeked in, the city lights slowly starts to flicker, decorating the city with diamonds, gems and gold. What a lovely evening it was, experiencing the essence of my home, my birth place Aizawl. My  Home sweet home...

I've put up a few images of what I've captured that day with my Nikon FM 2, the quality of the scanned negatives are not so great...but I hope you'll like the way I have arranged the images...

Saturday, April 21, 2012

My Grandpa

His wisdom overflowed in silvery white lines
His thoughts inked down each day
His humility shines on his face
His humour, a joy for all
His voice, always a soothing sound
A man of great deeds
Yet disrespected by his own blood
And many a times, his values ignored
But he is still strong as ever
No one else will ever take his place
He is and will always be the greatest
He is my Grandpa

Friday, April 20, 2012

The Sunset of 28th August, 2011 (Aizawl)

It was a Sunday evening at Aizawl, my hometown. The monsoon tears have almost dried up, its already the end of August. Some people hate monsoon, but back at home it's my favorite season of the year. Monsoon may have all its foes, but it is that moment of time which reveals nature's wonder. Monsoon always refreshed the weary souls of nature. It always make me nostalgic. So that Sunday evening, the 28th of August, 2011, I sat in front of my computer goin' online as usual. Since it was a Sunday, whatever time was used was already spent well. Even though I was turning my back against the window, I can feel the light dimming down. But something was different with the light outside that evening. I turned towards the window and I was dumbstruck. Man! I've never seen such a beautiful cloud formation at the dawn of sunset! I grabbed my camera as fast as I could, locked the house and than ran up my terrace. I wasn't satisfied with the view from my house. So I rushed towards my neighbor's building. After getting a number of frames from the tall building next door, I again rushed towards another neighbor's house and stood there till the sun goes down.

It's not everyday that one gets to see such wonders of nature. I feel grateful to the Creator every time I look back at these images. And I'm sure that many of the folks back there in Aizawl who witnessed the sunset of that evening would have also shared the same thoughts as I did! It is one of those moments which could not be brought back at any cost. Memories of that sunset may have been captured in these photographs but what was seen with the naked eye remains a treasure forever. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Cityscape: A Distorted View

Being a small town girl, living in big city gives me a feeling of constriction. The tall buildings and the mass of concrete structures make me realize the pace of development all over the world.The past few years of my life has been spent in concrete jungles; and I no longer enjoy the fresh view of the lush green hills and the blue mountains every time I wake up. I'm not against the ever increasing development (as it will never stop) but I can't stop dreaming about the green hills and blue mountains. My life is now surrounded by these physical concrete walls wherever I go and I have learned to live with it, forcing myself to accept it as 'normal'. During my visit to one such city, I tried to see the beauty in the walls which have haunted my thoughts. This body of work gives a distorted view a person inside a concrete jungle.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Family Memories: Reminiscing on the Past

Reminiscing on the past

As the hands of the time revolves around us, we are so preoccupied with life and eventually we tend to lose contact with our family albums. The pages of the albums are collecting dust in the corner of the room and the framed photographs just stand still. A quick glance from the corner of the eyes is all the attention it gets and we barely spend time to analyse the photographs. Family albums tell stories, a family history written and recorded in the form of visuals. That moment in time was frozen. Thus, the photograph became the only medium which takes us back in time. This project is an autobiography of a family's past memories, recalled  from selected photographs from a family's albums.

Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn't want what it doesn't have.
Love doesn't strut,
Doesn't have a swelled head,
Doesn't force itself on others,
Isn't always "me first,"
Doesn't fly off the handle,
Doesn't keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn't revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.
The Holy Bible
I Corinthians 13: 4-7 (MSG)

There's a Light over the horizon
Though I may not know what lies ahead
I know that you'll be there
You'll be there
Chelsea Brandow

His name is Frisky
Her name is Shy
He hasten
But she restrained
He was too loud and lively
But she was calm and quiet
Yet they were the best of friends
And they still are

Like a long lost dream recalled
I remember that ferris wheel ride
It seemed unreal
But real memories don’t easily fade away

The cold wintry feeling is at it’s best
When you are around
Lookin’ forward to the next winter
When the family will be together again

“You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be...”
Brendan Graham
Rolf Løvland
The voice of life spoke to me
But I didn’t realize it
I turned a deaf ear
But heaven poured its mercy on me
Thus I was saved
O Silent Voice! my guardian angel
I longed to hear your voice
Open my eyes
Teach me your ways
And let me not astray

His wisdom overflowed in silvery white lines
His thoughts inked down each day
His humility shines on his face
His humour, a joy for all
His voice, always a soothing sound
A man of great deeds
Yet disrespected by his own blood
And many a times, his values ignored
But he is still strong as ever
No one else will ever take his place
He is and will always be the greatest

He looked through the iris
I stared back
A quick sharp sound
His world, captured in fractions of a second

Selflessness can be an inborn quality
But moreover, it is a divine quality

A long mane could have been perfect
But not like Rapunzel’s
Pretty girly curly long mane
As good as it looks
So can it be boring
So I chopped off the long mane
Quite a liberation!
Whoosh! with the spikes!
I didn’t have to wait for it to dry
The task ever getting simpler
But once ain’t enough again
As it gets shorter,
I have to stop until mom rings the alarm
So here I am
Walking towards the long mane again
Whether short or long
It is still a long winding road

For the life you’ve given us
The love you’ve poured on us
Blessing and honour be yours
Now and forever

Knowing we can spend a lifetime
Reminiscing on the past
Knowing I will see your face again
Where tender moment last
It makes me wanna be there
Knowing I won't be alone
Knowing you'll be there makes it easy to go home
Suzanne Jennings
Michael Sykes