Sunday, June 20, 2010

Street - A New Way of Seeing

Street photography is about capturing the street, whether it is life on street or something else. We walk the streets of cities everyday and we don't usually pay much attention to the things surrounding us. Among most of things that we just walk away from and consider them insignificant, there are always some stuff that can be interestingly seen from a different point of view. Paying attention to the most insignificant stuff and thinking about them can help finding interesting things. Viewing this subjects from a different view (both literally and figuratively) can result in very interesting and original photos.

No one usually cares about little lakes and dead leaves after fall showers. What is there to see ? why should we care about so common stuff ? Have you ever sat down to see them from a closer or different point of view ? The photo I have here is taken by me on a very ordinary fall day in Karimkhan Street in Tehran. There is a very little lake of water on the side walk and people are passing by. There is a dead leaf that is drowning in the little lake. Its life was as important or as insignificant as anyone else, depending on one's view of life. Anyway, I sat down and took a few photos of it to show its drowning, the lake, and the people who are passing by to show how life on street is going on.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Documentary - Ashoora (Ashura) in Iran

Street/Documentary photography is one of my favorite areas of photography. The reason might be my passion for anthropology. It gives you the opportunity to observe real people. A camera can be a shield that you can hide behind and observe life as it goes on. This invaluable shield also gives you the opportunity to make the striking moments of life eternal.

One reason that I like documentary photography is that our memories are fading. A moment as seen with the eye can be striking at that moment and then it fades away. However, a photo can make that striking moment eternal, if it captures the heart of that moment. Another reason is that not all people has the same opportunities, and not all of them can be present at those moments. So as a payback for what I had the opportunity to see, I like to show them to people. To show them how bizzare things in your life can be totally normal in other people's life. So "Open mind for a different view".

This photo has been taken during the night before Ashoora/Ashura which is a very important day in Shia (شیعه)(Shitte) Islam. There are many different traditions in different parts of muslim countries. During this night, people gather usually at mosques or places called Hosseinieh (حسینیه) in Tehran. They hold a big funeral and they mourn till passed midnight. Each neighborhood (specially in older ones) they have groups they called Dasteh (دسته) which go on the street and carry big signs. People follow them in lines and mourn in different ways.

I should note that Ashoora is the 10th day of a ten day mourning the starting day of which is on the beginning of lunar year in Arabic countries (Iran is not an Arabic country).

One of the most important traditions during these 10 days in Iran is that some of the rich people who are also considered to be believers, or more faithful to Islam, give out free food to who ever comes and mourns in this big funerals. As part of this tradition they will sacrifice sheep, sometime for the mourners and sometimes for themselves. This sacrificed sheep is killed in the Islamic way of killing that makes their meat halal, usually on street. Then they make that dinner that they give out to the mourners with the meat of this sheep.

I took this photo in an old neighborhood in Tehran, Iran during this funeral in Winter of 2007. It shows one of those sacrifices taking place on the street. The butcher is slitting the throat of the sheep.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

A New Photoblog

Hi everyone,

Welcome to my photography blog. In this blog I am going to talk about everything related to photography including my works and other photographers' works. I hope this blog would help both of us, you and me, to pursue our goals which in my case is to improve my work and discuss photography from various points of views.

Frameless Frames is a goal I am trying to achieve. Some photos take you to a great journey far beyond physical boundaries of that photograph. There are so many ways to see photography and talk about it: different styles, different genres, different techniques. However, regardless of what a photographer's style is or what genre he is working in, if he can produce a frameless frame consciously, he has the power to change the world.

Now lets talk about this photo. I took this back in summer of 2009 in Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada. If you search for Lake Louise photos, most of them are from the same angle in which you cannot see the hotel and the camera is facing south-west. At least I did not see many photos from Lake Louise from other angles. The reason might be the fascinating beauty of Lake Louise when you enter its area from north-east. I took this photo in the middle of the walking path near Lake Louise and the camera was facing north-east.I used my Canon A640 (yes a compact camera with swivel LCD) to take this. I attached it to my tripod tilted the LCD to be faced down. Then I put the camera on timer and hold the tripod up in my hands in order to get the photo from a 3.5 meter-ish height. I could adjust the composition in the faced down LCD and I did the light metering and focusing when the camera was down.