Looking Back at August 2014 || a Month of Experimentation and Sustenance

Without history, our existence is meaningless. If there were no documented accounts, no memory, the concept of evolution wouldn't have existed, and we would be caught in an endless loop of performing tasks without actually ever learning anything. Literally living one day at a time. A concept that sounds nice, but practically would reduce us to the lowest levels of existence possible. We need to thank our ancestors who invented the practice of documentation, starting from the earliest cave painters. Before photography was invented, drawing and painting were the only way to represent an event in a visual form. 

Today, such a world seems difficult to comprehend, but barely a couple of centuries ago, it was a reality. Today, everyone is a photographer and the sheer numbers of photographs being clicked in a day surpasses imagination. So to a large extent, all of us are responsible for documenting history for our future generations. 
Aditya Arya at his India Photo Archives Foundation.
Some, such as the highly respected photographer Aditya Arya, are operating at a completely different level, but the rest of us lesser mortals can play important roles too. There are certain best practices for this too. Here are some I can think of: 

  1. Be authentic, be real
    Unless you are aiming for creative shots, try that your shots show the reality. Keep the editing to a minimum. If the colours of a building are dull, saturating them will only distort the reality and present a false pictures. So try to show things as they are, rather than how you wish they were.
  2. Tell the story
    Frame the shot in such a way that it captures the context along with the subject, and tells a true story from an unbiased point of view.

    For examples, this picture doesn't tell the whole story:

    but this does:
    And you know which one of the two is the winner.
  3. Keep it classy
    Even when photographing the most disturbing scene, make sure you respect the dignity of your subject. Especially for subjects in deprived conditions, make sure you do not photograph them nude or vulnerable. It is most insensitive.
  4. Be courteous
    Wherever possible, ask the subject for permission, especially if the subject is the hero of your photograph. Snapping away at random people without informing them is blatant invasion of their privacy and some day you may have a particularly angry subject socking you in the face and stomping your camera to little, tiny pieces. So this one is for your own safety as much as for their's.  
We are sure there are these and many more guidelines a documentation photographer should worry about. We are sure you will have some points to add to the list too. Do leave a comment for everyone's benefit. We will be ever grateful. 

Looking back at August 2014, the month was about sustaining our existing practices along with experimenting with new ideas. It was about classic photo journeys as much as it was about photography and photo editing techniques.

We continued our journey through the hauntingly beautiful valleys of North of Wales. This time we traveled through the timeless Snowdonia National Park, and we also relived our walks through the Delhi Zoo with our Adobe Friends. We went for an aerial tour of the Chausath Yamini Temple, Suhania Kakanmath Temple and the Bateshwar Group of Temples in the Morena Region of Madhya Pradesh.

August also saw Travelling Camera at The Hungry Monkey witnessing a Theatre of Cocktails, a show worth watching especially if you like a nice drink with your food.

One of PHOTO JOURNEY made us compile a list of weekend destinations around Chandigarh . If you would like to see similar lists for other destinations, send your suggestions to us through the comments section of contact-us form on right side panel.

There is something special for Twitter users. If you have missed the post on creating a interesting background for your Twitter account, then check this and make one for your own profile.

And to conclude, here are some stats that we will aim to beat next month:

Total number of stories in July 2014: 30
Total number of page views till date: 22,55,000 +
Total number of page views in July 2014: 75000 +

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