Meenakshi Temple, Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India
This is Lord Shiva, actually, Sundareshwar, a form of Shiva, one of the primary three deities in the “Great Hindu Trinity”: Brahma the creator, Vishnu the maintainer or preserver and Shiva, the destroyer or transformer. Along with Parvati, Shiva’s consort, these are the most important Gods in the Hindu pantheon.
This representation of Shiva appears on one of the towers or gopuram of the Meenakshi Temple, a historic Hindu temple located in the temple city of Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India. The Temple is dedicated to Meenakshi, a form of Parvati, and Sundareshwar. See my growing, new India gallery on my website for more photographs from my recent India trip and elsewhere.
Continue reading “LORD SHIVA, THE DESTROYER (OR TRANSFORMER)”
Paria-Vermilliion Cliffs Wilderness Area, Utah, Arizona
This is ‘The Wave,’ an extremelyphotogenic, sandstone formation located on BLM land straddling the Arizona, Utah border, near Page, Utah. This area is unmarked on most maps, not part of any national park, and it is a three-mile hike one-way, on a partially cross-country route, yet despite the difficulty of reaching to the wave, sometimes hundreds of persons show up during the prime months to secure one of ten precious hiking permits issued each day to visit the Wave. The reason access is so severely limited is that the highly striated, uplifted and swirling sandstone layers you see in this image, the ‘brain rocks’ and other wonderfully odd rock formations in the area, are extremely fragile. The BLM has to restrict visits to protect the formations and carefully explain to each person securing a permit the fragility of the rock formations, the partially unmarked and off-trail route and the hazards of hiking in this area especially during the hot months. A gallon of water per day per person, is recommended to carry to the area. More than few persons have set out to see The Wave and never found it; others have lost their way back to the remote parking area, returning in the dark after lingering too long at this incredible spot. See: other images of this area in my Southwest gallery.
Continue reading “THE WAVE, COYOTE BUTTES”
Chouara Tannery, Fez Medina, Morocco
The hides from tens of thousands of sheep were being processed in the Fez, Morocco, Tannery before me when I made this photograph, waiting with my camera and long glass for over an hour on the balcony of a leather goods shop for a photographic moment like this. The man on the porch opposite me, striking a crucifixion pose, had just emerged from the doorway behind to stretch for a minute before resuming work in the dye and chemical vats below. I chose my location for the strong, raking side lighting and the the wall opposite me, hoping something would happen on that porch. It finally did. I lasted an hour only because of mint sprigs handed out by the shop keeper to cut the nearly unbearable smell from the hides, the chemicals, the offal. See more images of Fez, the medina, desert dunes and from Morocco, in my Morocco gallery on my website.
Continue reading “CRUCIFIXION POSE, FEZ TANNERY WORKER”
Near Page, Arizona
Nineteen French tourists died one month after I made this photograph in 2009 in Lower Antelope Canyon, Arizona, on the Navaho Reservation near Page. They were trapped by a flash flood below a metal ladder leading lower down into this slot canyon, ten meters away from where I stood to make this image one month earlier. According to reports, this happened on a day just like the one on which I made this image. See other images like this in my Southwest gallery on my website, under Landscapes >Locations.
Continue reading “ROCK FACE, (GARGOYLE), LOWER ANTELOPE CANYON”
Near Trashigang, Bhutan
The tshechu are annual religious festivals of the Drukpa branch of Tibetan Buddhism, the national religion in Bhutan. Tshechu are held annually in each district or ‘dzongkhag.’ The focal point of the tshechus are the Cham dances and dancers. The Cham dances last hours, beginning early in the morning. They are sometimes described as ecstatic because they can involve leaping and other seemingly wild movement of masked or other costumed dancers, or, alternately, slow, highly meditative and trance-like gestures and movement. See other photographs of the tshechu, the Cham dances and the splendid thongdrel, an immense appliqué tapestry with religious images of the Guru Rinpoche, displayed in public only once yearly during the tshechu, and other images from Bhutan in the Bhutan gallery on my website under Travel Photography.
Continue reading “DANCE OF THE DRUMS II, GOM KORA (OR GOMPHU KORA) TSHECHU”