Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Russian impression in persian urban landscape

Booooo, that's a scary title.
Whenever I have time, I keep churning /organizing the mountains of images shot in Tajikistan. I found it interesting to put together a small set of images showing the odd but somewhat attractive (?) urban landscape (the interiors will be another blog entry later). These "things" are all the result of the Russian influence on design, left in Tajikistan, the only Persian speaking country in Central Asia. Tajikistan was the first country in Central Asia to gain independence, in December 1991. But it is still struggling to find an identity.
Enjoy... or maybe not.

New "Portfolio" link on my website

I have just put a new "Portfolio" link under "Stories" on my website.
Here is a screen shot:

There is a "heavy" quote to read on the opening image, while the rest of the images load in the back: "Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did NOT do that is inconsolable." - Sydney J. Harris wrote this, an American journalist.

I figured, knowing how rushed-up some photo editors are, it would be good to have a quick picture summary, hence the Portfolio link. Tough call of course on the selection of images - it's always hard to judge my own images. I selected them thinking to 1/ show diversity and therefore avoid repetition in the image settings 2/put some new recent material 3/make it short - only 20 images. Voila, so that's done.

I will double the blog today, another one coming up.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A wedding aftermath.

Feeling hungry? A new wedding regulation took place last July 09 in Tajikistan's Pamir mountains, among this Ismaili community: no more than 150 invited guests were to be allowed and no more than 3 hours shall be spent eating in the big halls that are rented out for weddings. That meant less time to eat the huge amount of food in between the endless speeches to the newly weds... and a bit of waste.
I shot these images in 5 mn running away from the waiters who were trying to kick me out. We were indeed past the allowed 3 hours.

This comes as a compliment to a more orderly food disposal, which you might remember if you click here. Maybe I should do posters for my kitchen.

And here some more random ones - there is much too much to say about Pamiri weddings - some of the traditions are closely link to pre-Islamic practices, such as fumigation of the houses with "Strakhm" (aka Buivekh or Achillea mellefolium), the colors that must be worn by the bride and groom etc. I witnessed all this and I should certainly do a page dedicated to Western Himalayan wedding - from the Karakoram, Hindukush and Pamir.

In the end, cake is always a hit...