Thursday, January 31, 2013

Friendly Faces

I think one of the hardest parts about photography is editing and deciding how to share it with others. A little separation to detach myself from the experience usually helps, a chance to reflect, some time to digest all of the stories. There's a fine line between waiting too long as the memories fade or being so excited I can't distinguish between good composition or just being stoked on the experience. I'm not sure where I'm at with my Nepal trip.  I returned to Alaska at the end of October and jumped straight into the whirl wind of my other life - a ski patrol supervisor. Like every season the winter has consumed most of my time as it should. I love the excitement of big storm cycles, long days and tired nights... but it sure hasn't helped me to share my work. My goal was to have a slide show together by mid December and here it is the end of January and I'm just starting the process. Already names and locations are fuzzy and I'm a little overwhelmed by the 3000 pictures and hours and hours of video. Here's my first attempt at a small series of portraits.

I'm the first to admit my discomfort on the other side of the lens. It's awkward when someone points their camera at me, especially a big one like mine. There is a certain amount of trust one must have for the person behind the lens. This is an interesting dynamic in travel photography when you don't know your subject or even speak the same language. Everyone responds differently. Some have no choice; their actions are candid and my camera is unbeknownst to them. Some have a natural ability to relax and smile. Others are serious. And most turn their head and try to ignore my presence. I love people, their expressions, their environment, their emotions, their bashfulness, their boldness... and even their reluctance. This photo essay is mostly about me and my interaction with my subject. 

Our beautiful hostess with fresh apples for our departure, Chhokang Paro, Tsum Valley. I hope to get a copy of this picture to her someday.

Our hosts making some tea in Nile, Tsum Valley

I found photographing children to be quite fun along the Manaslu Circuit. Many would approach me and ask for chocolate, pens and sometimes balloons. I would offer them a photo, and many would accept knowing they would get to see themselves on the LCD screen of my camera. 

At 12,713ft (3875M) in Samdo this women invited me into her home to sell me some of her beads and jewelry. I purchased a few things and she graciously let me take her picture.

Tsum Valley Homestay guide, Fupu Tsering Lama

 Boys will be boys. Serval of these wild ones started out throwing rocks at myself and my treking partner, Julie. They followed us for awhile as we hiked up to a small Gompa. Julie finally stopped and started singing to them. They watched in amazement and eventually she had them singing, dancing and performing for us. 

Every child needs a pet monkey!

A neighbor child of the family we stayed with in Chhokang Paro, Tsum Valley

Pemba and Fupu 

Pemba the Porter


shanepatrickwrites said...

thanks for sharing. your pics made the memories of that part of the world rush back.

Omar S. Manejwala, M.D. said...

The photo of the neighbor child in Chhokang Paro is fantastic.