Announcing the 2nd Location Portraiture & Lighting Masterclass in Varanasi, India

banner Masterclass

 

I am pleased to announce the second Location Portraiture and Lighting Masterclass in Varanasi, India. Well, ok it’s really the second time we’ve run the class, but the first time we’ve used this name. I am teaming up again with Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Guru and Wizard of Light Piet Van den Eynde. We will be releasing full details in the days to come. But let me assure you this will be an amazing class! Piet and I have been working all winter hammering out the details to make this class one that will be both highly educational, exciting, challenging and memorable and I think we have succeeded. We will be covering techniques and skills that are often skipped over on other workshops of this price or length. We will be covering the broad topics of: Continue reading

Neemrana: Forts, Snakes and Sadhus

 

 

One of the pedal yatris prostrating herself on the road in Jaipur.

Yesterday we left Jaipur and on the way out of town we got caught in a large “pedal yatra” or as it might be translated a “walking pilgrimage”. There were thousands of pilgrims walking to some obscure place for some reason unbeknownst to us. I say walking, when in reality they would walk a few steps then prostrate themselves, get up and do it again. This would go on for 80 km, I was told. After making our way through this group we were back on the highway and on our way to Neemrana, a sleepy little village only 2 and a half hours from Delhi. In Neemrana we checked into a renovated 15th century fort/palace that is now a hotel, we will stay two night then head to Delhi and fly home on the 28th.

This morning before breakfast I hired a local guide and we visited a 1000 year old Kali Temple, an ashram full of Sadhus and a village of snake charmers. What did you do this morning?

 

Yatris on the road out of Jaipur.

 

A priest of the ancient Kali temple in Neemrana performing his morning puja.

 

Even though snake charming was banned in the 1990 it is still practices by the Garudi cast. At a Kalbelia village outside of Neemrana.

 

Children learn as early as 4 years old how to work with cobras. But the trade is dying since they can make more money as day laborers.

 

A sadhu or “Baba” under an ancient banyan tree at the ashram in Neerana.

 

Sadhu Portrait #2

Sadhu Portrait #2. Kumbh Mela, Hardiwar, India.

This was shot with my favorite 85mm f1.2. I was talking the other day with someone about the 85mm f1.2 and the 50mm f1.2 (that I recently bought). We were joking why they even have a focal length over f2.8 on those lenses? If you buy a super fast lens chances are you’ll never use it at a speed higher than that. At least I don’t.

Sadhu Portrait #1


While walking around Haridwar exploring the Kumbh Mela last week, Gavin Gough and I walked into a rather non-discript ashram. An ashram, for lack of a better description, is kind of like a Jewish Kibbutz. Travelers or “seekers of truth or enlightenment” might come and stay at an ashram while on their journey. They might give the visitors work or responsibilities to share in while they live there.  It can also be just a glorified guest house. This place we had stepped into was more like the latter than the former. There where dozens, if not hundreds of Sadhus house for their time at the Mela. As we walked around several asked for us to take their photos. The light was nice and the subjects colorful. This emerged.