Colours of Dhaka

Colours of Dhaka. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

  It’s back to school in the new year and photography assignment time.  I might be an ageing student but somethings never change – like  in the “good old days” I am desperate starting the assignment only the day before.  The voice inside me is nagging – “You have not taken any photos for your assignment.”   It didn’t help that there was no sun in the morning – it remained gloomy with a biting cold wind.  But the luck changed somewhere in the evening when a watery sun appeared and I rushed out at tea break hoping  to catch the evening light.

The assignment is on colour, shape, lines,low and hi  depth of field, blurring of images all the basics about composing a photo. 

The curry leaf plant that was a gift by my colleague Momina catches my eye.  OK, that looks fine — at least one in the bag so to speak. …

Karapincha (curry) leaves from a plant that a friend gave me. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

Outside near the billboard  two young photographers Sayed Asif Mahmud and Wahid Adnan are having a smoke. Here all the young smoke — so sad.  Asif once pulled rank jokingly and says he is my senior at Pathshala photogrpahy course. At my age its good to find a senior in school.  Adnan on the other hand has adopted me as his Granny! So now I have a 2 year old granddaughter going on 3 and a 30 year old grandson going… gosh! I wonder where?  But he says “Granny matters” and  it was time to pose for Granny.

Granny Matters. Helpful comrades Sayed Asif Mahmud and Wahid Adnan. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

Then a quick fix on lines.

Lines of steel near a highrise apartment building coming up on the road where I live. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

 Asif says as a beginner I should keep my images sharp and its only as you get older that photographers start blurring images.

This one taken at the only Bangla wedding I’ve attended was a tray of betel leaves at the entrance.


Attractive offering of betel leaves at a Bangladeshi wedding. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

And then a creative dinner sometime ago got me more shapes and colours.

Prawn Portrait. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

 How can one do composition assignment  in Dhaka without the ubiquitous rickshaw walla?

Dhaka rickshaw walla. The city is supposed to have over a million rickshaws. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

And how not to include a portrait…

Portrait of Mariam. Lalmatia, Dhaka. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

‘We choose our joys and sorrows long before we experience them.’ — Kahlil Gibran

6 thoughts on “Colours of Dhaka

  1. Love the different subjects, contrast of color and blurring of images you managed to get in these photos. I took a photo of wires hanging above the street iin Bangkok which I would have taken differently now that I’ve seen your photo. You’re a good teacher. Hope you were able to eat the prawn after photographing it as it looked delicious as well as regal. Eager for the next posting.

  2. Thanks for this post — love your angles and insights. I never knew Bangladesh had so much life and colour. Looking at how the mainstream media covers the country, we think the country is all poor, corrupt and drowning in disasters and misery.

  3. Many thanks for the feedback. It always helps to know how the blog is received. At times I wonder will anyone be interested in what I am posting?

    Yes, I am seeing beyond the surface of things. All what you say is there, but I see also warmth of the people, colours of friendships, dignity in earning a living through hard work by the rickshaw wallas, rag pickers, street sellers etc. It’s a different world to ours. I photograph to remember

  4. chulie, your work really inspired me. those pictures are worth more than a thousand words… and they give insight to life. do post more on this site and carry on the good work.
    wishing you good health and peace of mind….

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