The Journey Part 1 – Photographing India
The image I share today is from 2010 while I was photographing India. I was travelling with family back to my mother’s homeland on a family heritage trip. During our stay there we were exposed to the hardships so many from that country experience. I would walk the streets daily absorbing the culture and challenges the local people faced. My heart was full of compassion for the many wonderful people I saw that had far less than I’d ever had to make do with. As I walked, I saw children in age similar to mine walking the streets, begging so that they could survive. I saw industrious hard working people looking for any opportunity to make ends meet. It made me appreciate the wonderful circumstances that I lived in and the great opportunities I could provide for my children. For me personally photographing India was a great joy and a massive challenge. There were many cultural barriers to overcome and the weather was just so hot and muggy too, which is so wonderful for photography.
A Beggar woman in Chennai
This particular image I captured of a local Chennai woman who was waiting outside one of the very few Christian churches, begging. I photographed her as she approached us. I noticed that she sat at the steps of the small cathedral and that many people had passed her by. I noticed her partially deformed and swollen leg, her frail arms outstretched, her body slouched over. Her sad, wrinkled face told me a story of harsh life and sorrow. I could not communicate with her in her language, but I gave her a small offering to help her and in the most beautiful way she smiled and showed her appreciation. My heart beamed in delight, that I could help in a small way another of God’s children. In that instant I forgot the long strenuous drive we were on and the humid sticky weather that I was finding almost unbearable. I began feeling peace and joy for loving someone else. I never saw her again, but this image and my emotions from our encounter remind forever how grateful I need to be for what I have.
My heart became so fond of this experience and the others that I had on this journey photographing India. I have become attracted to this country and its spiritual power, its amazing cultural diversity and the beautiful buildings and monuments along the way. I have teamed up with my good friends and fellow award winning professional landscape photographer Paul Dowe from Paul Dowe Galleries to take others seeking these experiences and adventures, helping other photographers to use the power of their camera to document the journey of life. Our Wild Light Photographic tours are more than just the average photographic tours, they are a journey – an exploration a life experience not to miss. One that we will be advertising and promoting soon will be a wonderful tour photographing India.