Skip to main content

Featured Post

Book Review: On Philosophising, Philosophers, Philosophy and New Vistas in Applied Philosophy, by Dr. Sharmila Jayant Virkar

A little bit of context before you begin reading this book review. I have recently enrolled for an MA in Philosophy at the University of Mumbai. Philosophy is something I have been getting interested in, over the past few years, as those of you who have been reading my blogs and Instagram posts would know. During the pandemic, I thought long and hard about what I wanted to do next, and this is what I eventually came up with. It has been a challenge, getting back into academics as a student at this age, especially in a subject I have no academic background in. However, it has also been very exciting, especially thanks to my wonderful classmates (who, surprisingly, are of all age-groups, including some quite near my own) and my teachers, who have been very supportive and understanding. How well I will do is something that remains to be seen, but so far, I am enjoying this new journey and look forward to where it leads. Now that you know the background , you probably get an idea of how

Of Photo- Journalism


While in Tiruppur, we decided to take Samhith to his first Tamil movie. It was also his first experience of the old fashioned single screen theatre, and he was surprised to see that there was just one huge screen in such a big place. The gallery surprised him even more, as did the cost of the ticket! The movie was ‘Ko’, one which has received rave reviews for its excellent cinematography and direction, and relates the story of a photojournalist dealing with the current political situation.

Since this was Samhith’s first Tamil movie, I was a bit apprehensive about how he would manage to follow the dialogues and if he would actually sit through the three and a half hour long story. I needn’t have worried, for the visuals were stunning and the action riveting enough to transcend the language problem, and Samhith happily sat through the entire movie, just grabbing my hand or hiding his eyes at intervals when the going got too rough! After the movie, he had just one question – “Amma, what is a photojournalist?”


This led to an interesting conversation, when I tried to explain that a photojournalist was a journalist who told a story without words, through his photographs. That got him thinking for a while, and then he asked – “Amma, are you a photojournalist?” Now that was a surprise, and when I asked why he thought so, he said, “But you take photos all the time, and on your blog, you write your posts with lots of pictures. So, why aren’t you a photojournalist?” Trying to get him to understand the difference between a journalist and a blogger wasn’t all that easy, but I managed to convince him in the end that I couldn’t really call myself a photojournalist. At least, not yet! That put an end to the discussion for that day.

Almost a fortnight later, we were at Mount Abu, and made a visit to Achalgarh. On the way, I suddenly noticed the skull of a buffalo (or cow, or ox, no idea what….) placed on a stick to act as a scarecrow. Our driver had hurried past, and I had no time to take a pic, but both, Samhith and Shankar wanted to see it, and I promised to point it out the next time I saw one. Just a few minutes later, I saw another skull, again in the middle of a field, but this time it appeared to have fallen off. I asked the driver to stop, and pointed it out. While I would have been satisfied with a pic of just the skull, Shankar had other ideas. He convinced Samhith to go one step further….Here’s what happened next…..











When Samhith came back, I showed him the photos I had taken. He seemed thrilled by the sequencing, and said, “Amma, you are now a photojournalist!” For once, I was absolutely lost for words!


Comments

  1. oh wow, he was brave enough to pick up a skull and put it on the stick! way to go Samhith :-)

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Thanks so much for stopping by. Please leave a comment for me so that I will know you have been here....

Popular posts from this blog

The Havelis of Bikaner - A Photo Post

The lanes are narrow , twisting and turning amidst buildings old and new. Crumbling old structures with intricate workmanship stand side by side with art deco buildings, and more modern constructions, which follow no particular style. Autos, bicycles, motorcycles and vans rush past, blowing their horns as loudly as possible, while cows saunter past peacefully, completely unaffected by the noise. In the midst of all this chaos, children play by the side, and women go about their chores, as we explore these by-lanes of Bikaner, and its beautiful Havelis. Facade of one of the Rampuria Havelis

Gokarna Part II – The Five Lingams

We continued our Gokarna trip by visiting four other Shiva temples in the vicinity, all connected to the same story of Gokarna. The story of Gokarna mentions the Mahabaleshwara Lingam as the one brought from Kailas by Ravana, and kept at this place on the ground by Ganesha. (See my earlier post- Gokarna – Pilgrimage and Pleasure). However, the story does not end here. It is believed that, in his anger, Ravana flung aside the materials which covered the lingam- the casket, its lid, the string around the lingam, and the cloth covering it. All these items became lingams as soon as they touched the ground. These four lingams, along with the main Mahabaleshwara lingam are collectively called the ‘ Panchalingams’ . These are: Mahabaleshwara – the main lingam Sajjeshwar – the casket carrying the lingam. This temple is about 35 Kms from Karwar, and is a 2 hour drive from Gokarna. Dhareshwar – the string covering the lingam. This temple is on NH17, about 45 Kms south of Gokarna. Gunavantesh

The Elephanta Caves

The Elephanta Caves , located on Elephanta Island, or Gharapuri, about 11 Km off the coast of the Gateway of India, Mumbai, are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A visit to these caves, excavated probably in the 6 th century CE, is awe-inspiring, and also thought-provoking. Over the years, I have visited the caves a number of times, and also attended a number of talks by experts in the fields of art, history and archaeology on the caves. Together, they help me understand these caves, their art, and the people they were created for, just a little bit better. Every new visit, every new talk, every new article I read about the caves, fleshes out the image of what the island and the caves would have been like, at their peak. I last wrote about the caves on this blog, in 2011, almost exactly 11 years ago. Since then, my understanding of the caves has, I would like to think, marginally improved. Hence this attempt to write a new and updated post, trying to bring to life, the caves of Elephan