For me photography isn’t just about creating beautiful images Its about Making Connections with people first and foremost. Recently I was asked to show my best work. “I want to see how good of a photographer you really are”, I think were the words that were presented to me. That got me to thinking about photography and my connection with it over the years and what it means for me to call myself a photographer.
Rewind to 2014 up in the Parvati Valley at a place called Manakarin in India. Some how on my return trip from Dharamasla I got off the bus and stayed in a tiny town for the night. I needed a break from my trip heading south from the mountains. The next morning on my walk to the bus station I was talked into hiring a car instead of taking the local bus. He took me to Manakarin. On our way up the mountain I couldn’t help but notice men on motorbikes sometimes 3 on a single bike flying by us heading up the mountain.
They were even coming down as well. All I could really see was the bright but distinctive color of saffron orange flowing off these men as they all passed. They were wrapped around their faces, these beautiful turbans, protecting them from the sun, dust and dirt. It turned out that there was a massive pilgrimage that was taking place and I happened to be there when these Sikhs were coming all the way from Amritsar. Wandering over the bridge and into the tiny town I new that this place was pure magic. I wandered down the tiny street and ended up finding a hotel and checked in.
The first evening in theParvati valley I soon found out how friendly and engaging the Sikh people were. I talked with so many kind Sikhs’ that evening it was really quite unreal. I mean I even danced on the street. It felt as if I were traveling with a massive community of friends. The next morning continued in the same fashion. I couldn’t go far without having to stop and talk with all these new acquaintances.
What ensued is really hard to grasp as it all happened so quickly. The next 48hrs of my life would not be the same.
I quickly found out that I was leaving in 20 minutes time joining a lorie full of returning sikhs to Amritsar. I was pretty nervous. Was I actually making the right decision by joining a bunch of complete strangers? I resigned to the fact that if anything were to happen then such was life.
This series of images is my ode to living life without fear. Without anger. Most of all this series of images is an ode to live life everyday.
And that we all get to share this crazy trip with one another!
There were so many questions running through my mind. So many that I had to just forget about the nagging what if’s and press on.
And that is what I did. “Where are you going”, asked the curious hotel worker? “Umm I’m going to Amritsar on a lorie”, I said. “I, see”. the curious and baffled gentleman answered back.
Thinking back now I’m pretty sure I didn’t eat that morning.
When ever I have pursued the act of traveling, I’ve always strived to relinquish any set itinerary and or prescribed list of destinations that I had to see and or experience. Looking back now at this particular style of traveling I’m sure it is quite common to many but either you travel this way or you travel with a set agenda.
Peace and Love.