Tag Archives: human interest photography

Riding the Light

mys_8320

A lady sitting on the floor of a market in Bantul, Jogjakarta

I was in Jogjakarta, Indonesia for a few days in mid-November last month. Hanging out at Kota Gede with my local photographer friend, Romeography of Studio 76. We planned to wander aimlessly around the east part of Jogjakarta with our cameras.

It was already the beginning of monsoon season here in Southeast Asia … and I was pretty sure that the sky would be dull and the light would be challenging in Jogjakarta too, as the raining season is here to stay until at least towards the end of January next year

After a few failed attempts to hunt for sunrises and sunsets, we decided not to waste our time wandering around hunting for gorgeous landscape anymore… we were out on the street focusing on human interest instead.

mys_7644-edit-edit

Plaosan temple at sunset

We hang around markets mingling with locals selling all sorts of daily items. We snuck around a group of people selling roosters or cocks for the gamecocks or cockfights. Uh … scary sight of bleeding roosters fighting for its life.

MYS_8606.jpg

Spontaneous gamecocks

mys_8546

6-months old  rooster was for sale at rp600,000

mys_8510

Caged birds were for sale

mys_8443-edit

Mbah Madio selling palm tree sugar at a market in Bantul, Jogjakarta

Wandering around with motorbike hunting for subjects and lights has its pros and cons. Other than the pain in the butt (from sitting on a small seat for too long), it was also the risk of getting wet from the rain.

But … it was the easiest way to move around from point A to point B without having to worry about the condition of our routes plus we can just park the bike anywhere we wish. Talking about convenience right …

nep_4250

The horses of Malioboro street were having their morning bath here at a river near Bantul, Jogjakarta

nep_4206-edit

Hunting for light at the nearby bridge in Bantul, Jogjakarta

mys_8287-edit

Farmers along side of the road in Bantul, Jogjakarta

nep_3544-edit

Spent a few hours here at Pak Sugiman’s workplace at Putat Village, Gunung Kidul, Jogjakarta

Well … the rain doesn’t stop me from achieving my primary goal for this trip lol … which was to have a stress free moment chasing the light. I had a great time … getting close and personal with my subjects, good food and good companion all the way … ahhh I couldn’t ask for more, alhamdullilah.

mys_8825-edit-edit

My closing sunset for this trip. A dramatic sunset due to the unpredictable weather

We are planning for more future trips to explore more of the landscape surrounding Jogjakarta … maybe after the monsoon season is over. Who knows … In Sha Allah

And …. life goes on and on … and I am learning throughout the journey. Learning to be grateful for each moment that Allah presented to me. Learning to see and accept people as who they are. Learning to love every soul that cross path my journey … and letting go the one that decided to venture out of my path. People changed … a heart changed.

“Oh Allah, please ease my path. Guide my iman. Guide my every single actions. Guide me to love for Your sake. Protect what is in my heart. What lies in the future, only You know. Verily, Allah is All-Knower, Most Merciful and Most Gracious.”

Bye for now,

Cheers

MM


The color of Kindness

IND_4668

India 2015: “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle.”

It has been awhile since my last post here. So many things happened during that period of time … smacked down moments that make the happy go lucky me went silent without words …  my ‘maturity’ lesson, I called it.

Or maybe a trade-off for my current lifestyle that I am having now. In order for me to enjoy my “jiwa MERDEKA” or “free spirited” life … I have to experience these emotional confusion about responsibility, accountability, loyalty, trust, love, friendship, religion (as what PEOPLE imposed me on believing) and death.  More you get of X, less you get of Y.

Accepting and understanding death is the hardest for me. Loosing someone who is close to you through death does not feel the same as loosing him/ her through a devastating broken relationship. But well … life continuously goes on and on … and time heals you accordingly. For arwah Abah and Paksu … al-fatihah.

What really helped during those confusing moments? … the act of kindness by people closed to me and by those unexpected strangers in my life … helps to ease up my confusion and at the same time giving me hope and space … so that I would rise up better than before. Alhamdullilah and thank you …

If I rant further more … then this post will ended up as philosophical as Sigmund Feud thesis paper on understanding human psychology.

"We rise by lifting others." -

India  2015: “We rise by lifting others.”

The truth is … I am craving for my solitude and silence more than ever now.

With this thunder inside me now … if I continue forcing myself out, words spoken or written surely would sound more defensive and hostile. The hidden drama queen in me would probably go berserk  😉 … but ‘I am no hero and I’m not made of stone.

Looking at photos has a temporary tranquility effect on me … my all-natural tranquilizer. Sharing some human interest portraits from my recent India trip with my readers here. Images are mostly in monochrome, if you want to view in color then you can check-out my flickr account.

I need a lullaby to keep me going while preparing my today’s post. I am singing my heart out with my karaoke version of  “Until it Sleeps” by Metallica. Let’s sing along together with me … 1… 2 … 3 😉

Note: click the video below so that you can continue reading while listening to the song as your background music

"A warm smile is the universe

India 2015: “A warm smile is the universal language of kindness.”

Where do I take this pain of mine?
I run, but it stays right by my side

So tear me open, pour me out
There’s things inside that scream and shout
And the pain still hates me
So hold me until it sleeps

"Respect is a two-way street, if you want it you have to give it." - R.G. Risch

India 2015: What is the color of kindness?

Just like the curse, just like the stray
You feed it once and now it stays
Now it stays

They said PINK is the color of kindness

India 2015: They said PINK is the color of kindness

So tear me open but beware
There’s things inside without a care
And the dirt still stains me
So wash me until I’m clean

It grips you, so hold me
It stains you, so hold me
It hates you, so hold me
It holds you, so hold me
Until it sleeps

Kindness

India 2015: And, he has the color of kindness neatly tucked on his shoulder

So tell me why you’ve chosen me
Don’t want your grip
Don’t want your greed
Don’t want it

kindness

India 2015: “My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.” ~ Dalai Lama

I’ll tear me open, make you gone
No more can you hurt anyone
And the fear still shakes me
So hold me until it sleeps

kindness

India 2015: “The kindest word in all the world is the unkind word, unsaid”

It grips you, so hold me
It stains you, so hold me
It hates you, so hold me
It holds you, holds you, holds you
Until it sleeps

IND_1436

India 2015: “Kindness, like a boomerang, always returns”

I don’t want it … no … no … no

IND_1609

India 2015: “To be happy, we must not be too concerned with others”

So tear me open but beware
There’s things inside without a care
And the dirt still stains me
So wash me… till clean

India 2015: “In the end … only kindness matter”

I’ll tear me open, make you gone
No longer will you hurt anyone
And the hate still shapes me

So hold me until it sleeps

IND_1668

“What is a rebel? A man who says NO” … so hold me until I SLEEP 🙂

I am signing off right now … and continue taking my recovery sleep. When I finally decide to wake up … I will strike harder and better than before … In Sha Allah. Till then … 🙂

Cheers

MM

 

 

p/s Ramadhan Mubarak to all my muslim readers … and we are moving nearer to the last 10 days of Ramadhan. The most blessed days in the blessed month of Ramadhan are the last 10 days of Ramadhan. May Allah grant all of us strength and will to make the remaining days of Ramadhan work to our advantage … ameen.

 

 


Angelic colors in Maiga Island

Heading straight-on to Maiga Island

Heading straight-on to Maiga Island

Perfect natural light … perfect cloud … perfect wind … perfect weather … ahhh just speechless!

I couldn’t ask for more. Great companion as always … photographers from Brunei, Singapore, Kota Kinabalu and Kuala Lumpur … mostly are strangers turned companions. We shoot like a mad soldier with infinity bullets 😉 . I was surrounded by non stop camera shutter sound from my left and right side, it makes me feel  inferior lol … like I am not working hard enough accumulating my own stock photos …. argh! bunch of pro photographers. And … in 2 days, I accumulated more than 1000 images from my “crazy! memory space eater” D800/ D800E 😉

And, great food too as our host Muslianshah bin Masrie is not only a great photographer but he turned out to be a darn good cook too. I couldn’t complaint more … why should you complaint when your belly is full, right? *wink*

Maiga Island under the sun

Approaching the island

View from one of the jetty here in Maiga Island

View from one of the jetty here in Maiga Island

The other side of Maiga Island

Stunning landscape here … sun, sky and cloud overload

check

My addiction with clouds continue here

Photographer’s heaven …!! <— I know! I need to stop ranting and start writing instead.

Maiga Island is just a small remote tropical island. No hotels, no facilities … just a few simple and humble homes owned by the island people from Suluk and Pala’u (Bajau Laut) descent. Typical Sabahan hospitality… playful, friendly and polite. So, I would like to remind you … that you need to have an adventurous soul to be able to see and enjoy the beauty of this place.

We shared their homes for 2 nights and we hang around with their children during our sunsets and sunrises. You would probably feel a bit curious …  about the safety issues surrounding this area especially after the major security breached incident regarding foreign intruders last year. Well, it felt safe when we were there … and I saw groups of China tourist wandering freely around some small islands there too.  Well … there is always a RISK in everything that we do, right?

Sunset here at Maiga Island. The downside of having cloud overloads is ...

Sunset here at Maiga Island. The downside of having cloud overload is … my round yellow “egg yolk” sun … ended up playing peek-a-boo with me

Catching the last color of the day at Maiga Island. Yeah ... I admit , another boat as my foreground ...

Catching the last color of the day at Maiga Island. Yeah … I admit , another boat as my foreground

The curfew hours from 6pm to 6am is still on-going though … so, no island hoping activities at night for us. Just some relaxing and frustrating milky-way night shoot … and this is due to the cloud overload activities that continue during night time too.

Milky-way attempt at Maiga Island

Milky-way attempt at Maiga Island

And, this is how my sunrise look like:

Morning light peeping  out from the nearby island

Morning light peeping out from the nearby island

Children doing their routine jump at the jetty during my sunrise moment

Children doing their routine jump at the jetty during my sunrise moment

Bohey Dulang Island

A gorgeous fisheye view of the Bohey Dulang Island

good

Island children playing with their small boats

Island children with their routine jump at the jetty

Island children with their routine jump at the jetty

I made some new friends here too, Patricia, Azmal and Chinta.

Regardless of whatever or whoever our background is … human is still human and children will always be children. Most of the children here are without proper nationality and ‘politically’ they don’t entitled to experience school (… sarcastically saying). With no proper education, most of them can’t read or write but they are not slacking on their manners. Well mannered children that makes my heart nervous … thinking of their future.

This is Chinta with her audience

This is Chinta with her audience

The boy with a lollipop is Azmal. My diplomatic little tour guide ... I paid him to guide me around the island

The boy with a lollipop in his mouth is Azmal. My diplomatic little tour guide … I paid him to guide me around the island

Playing with my sea gypsy friends

Playing with my sea gypsy friends

Me and you moment

Me and you moment

Chinta … is not her real name, her real name is so difficult to remember so I just called her Chinta lol. She is a great story teller and a very imaginative child too. Whenever she started telling her stories …. the rest of the children would definitely be glued to her … including me, an adult child he he he.

I had a hormone imbalance moment when it was time for me to depart from the island. I had dust in my eyes whenever I look them in their eyes … especially towards Azmal, Chinta and Patricia. It felt like leaving your own child alone at a strange and dangerous roadside. Emotional attachment in 2 1/2 days … I am definitely getting older … or is it an early menopause sign? … emo 🙂

Wefie moment with my island friends

Wefie moment with my island friends

May Allah grant them protection, peace of mind, guidance and remain in his guidance always. And, may Allah grant a continuos resources, energy and time for me to travel and learn more from life … ameen.

“Do they not travel through the land, so that their hearts (and minds) may thus learn wisdom and their ears may thus learn to hear? Truly it is not their eyes that are blind, but their hearts which are in their chests” (22:Al-Hajj:46)

I pressed published before  before checking on my post ... lol ... and missed this photo. A child playing with her swing ...

The joy of witnessing life:  A child playing with her swing … love it!

And as at today, my traveling schedule for the next few months is still remained empty. I am planning to stay glued at home … editing photos, updating my photo portfolio, generating money to finance my next travel project and working on GayaIzzah.com. Wish me luck yea …

Cheers

MM

 

p/s If you plan to visit here, I would suggest you to bring some gifts for the children. Children clothing or swimming goggles or pens/ pencils or simple reading books or books for writing. Or you can spent some moments with them, reading for the children or just playing “tag you’re it” game with them. Sharing is caring …


%d bloggers like this: