I recently participated in a photo walk in Jaipur “See The Unseen” conducted by a photography club for The World Sight Day on 12th October. This Jaipur Photo walk took place in the old city area of Jaipur and was attended by a large number of photographers – the highest in any photo walk that I have attended.
Read the previous post: Photo walk in Jaipur/ Street Photography – Faceless Frames ” Hands”
Participating photographers were paired together. One of them would click pictures while the other would be a navigator. The underlying idea was that the photographer needs to click pictures with a blindfold -it was a Street Photography without relying on one’s ability to see!
Since the event was for The World Sight Day, photographers were asked to click pictures relying on other senses like sound. That’s how a blind person clicks pictures. After a designated time, both would switch places.
The photo walk took place on a Sunday morning. It created a lot of stir as people on the road were amused to find blindfolded people armed with a camera clicking pictures. Many of them couldn’t contain themselves and came up to ask what this was all about.
The walk started at 7.30 AM even though the designated time was 6.30 AM. By 8 AM the bazaars were buzzing with activities.
Devotees at the temple, morning walkers congregating at eateries for the Sunday breakfast and Chai shops… the excitement and subjects swelled as the clock progressed.
I also captured a few pictures blindfolded. It’s a different ball game when you lose the concept of composition. Suddenly, you are out of your comfort zone! All you can to do is bring your camera up to your eye level and shoot! You need to let go of the few important aspects of photography like leveling the horizon, changing aperture or ISO settings. I shot the following pictures at a constant setting irrespective of the light conditions. Here are a few monochrome pictures that I clicked while I was blindfolded.
This sweeper was distracted upon seeing a blindfolded lady with the camera!
These rickshaw owners were amused to find a blindfolded person taking a shot at them and inquired what this was all about from the accompanying navigator. They demanded money for being subject. Upon realizing that there’s no money to be made here, they settled for tea instead! I guess they just weren’t lucky!
Breakfast point – The Poha seller!
The tea point!
Let’s light up a joint!
Street urchins waiting for the free food in front of a temple.
Vegetable seller outside a temple.
Sometimes you get it right, too!
If you are wondering how I shot these images, have a look at the below set of pictures which has a group of people chanting Bhajan on their way to the temple.
You have to keep shooting in succession hoping you will get at least one right!
I stood still and kept pressing the shutter button. One after another.
The milk seller!
This is the last picture I shot blindfolded! It was time to switch places with the navigator!
The concept was novel and none of the participants were aware as to how the walk will unfold until they were briefed. Unlike earlier photo walks in Jaipur, this walk ended with a press coverage.
So what was great about this photo walk? One, as a photographer you get exposed to the novel concepts which are important for your mental stimulation. Two, it is also a place where you can mingle with other photographers. Three, it’s great to see so many photographers attending a photo walk in Jaipur cutting across the age and gender. Four, there was no prerequisite of photography equipment. One could click pictures with DSLR, point, and shoot/ compact camera or a smartphone.
I have mentioned in my previous post that generally, I avoid photo walks because of distractions and concentration on the specific subjects but sometimes we need to break out of our shells and see things from a fresh perspective. Streetlife photography is an enriching experience.
Street Photography in Jaipur is quite rewarding with varied subjects and buzzing bazaars. Photography on Streets of India is a highly rewarding experience, something that Indian photographers will vouch for. Generally, people are okay with their pictures being clicked…..but there are exceptions too! TIP: For Street Photography you must be in the right place and the right time.
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