Luo Jian is a Chinese documentary photographer based in Paris and Beijing. After working 10 years as a photojournalist in the Chinese press industry, he decided to move to France where he began a new photography journey. His work focuses on the life of the people with a geopolitical background. He tries to find the fundamental relations between Man and the modern society and presents them through his lenses.
The project concentrates on the living situation and the inner life of the Tibetan nuns. The population of this group gradually declines as a result of accelerated urbanization in Tibet and tightened religious control by the Chinese government. Their lifestyle also reflects, to a certain extent, the destiny of Tibetan women under the pressure of religious tradition and patriarchal society.
Health Care issue – Indian Women and Children of Rural and Financial Backward areas
Ranita Roy was born in Andul, a small town near Kolkata, India. She is a documentary photographer and visual artist.
She completed Hostile environment awareness training (HEAT) at Jakarta, nominated by Thomson Reuters (2020). Whose work has been published in various media publications including Reuters, The Washington Post Magazine, The New York Times, The Caravan magazine, Al Jazeera, The Guardian, The National (UAE), DW News, The Economic Times, Hindustan Times, Feature Shoot, BBC.
In 2019 Ranita joined Reuters as a freelance photojournalist and also joined WaterAid India as an Empanelled Photographer in 2020. She has worked on numerous personal projects including Old Age Happiness, Sleep Paralysis (Research work)), Flood and cyclone-affected areas, Child Labor, Health care issues, Animal rights, and many more. She has won numerous scholarships including the Scholarship from NOOR Images, Timothy Allen Photography Scholarship 2018, and VII Academy (2019). Her work has been recognized numerous times including by UNESCO (Climate change). She received the 7th National Photography Award (India), an Honorable Mention in Marilyn Stafford FotoReportage Award and she was a top 10 finalist of the International Women Photographer Award 2017. in 2019 she bagged a fellowship from WaterAid India. She is currently a 2020 Women Photograph mentorship program mentee.
Ranita completed a Master’s degree in Environmental Science from Asutosh College (Kolkata). She has also gained advanced knowledge in narrative photography from New Directions by Sohrab Hura (Magnum photos Photographer), and National Geographic Photo Camp (Kolkata)2018. In 2019, she attended the 7th annual New York Portfolio Review organized by The New York Times in New York.
In spite of India’s name for respecting women, history tells that women were mistreated or neglected in varied spheres of life across religions, regions, and communities. The Indian society is obsessed with a male child, and hence, women are often forced to get pregnant for want of a son. Even though everyone is aware of a woman’s nutritional needs during pregnancy, it is not meted out to them, a very irresponsible attitude shown by their husbands and family members, and numerous pregnancies, abortions even in case of female child and closely spaced births, adds to deteriorating health and nutritional status. Men are found very casual and they don’t even bother about their wife’s or child’s health. It is also observed that the dietary intake of rural pregnant women was lower than the recommended level. The desired support from family and their husband is always missing. Usually, low weight infants are born to mothers with under nutrition and poor health. The incidence of anemia was found to be highest among lactating women followed by pregnant women and adolescent girls. Unawareness on health care and negligence from their husband during pregnancy results in negative outcomes for both the mother and the child. Even men never show interest to take mother and the child to the health centre. People from health centre, either visit their home for treatment on a regular interval or they take them to the health centre. As a society, we need to actively work towards providing our women with good health because a healthy woman ensures a healthy family. Women are not the weaker sex; society has made them so. We need more awareness drives, camps that educate rural women on the issues mentioned above, campaigns and projects that will help change mindsets and help save our women!
I was born in France in the ‘80s from a Laotian father and a Vietnamese mother. I am a self-taught photographer, photography is my mode of self-expression. I started my photographic work in 2010, with my series “Rooted”: an introspective journey through Laos in search of my very own roots. My whole artistic work is intimately linked to my life, to what resonates deeply in myself, to the quest for identity and humanity.
It was in Vientiane, the capital of Laos, that I met Bo and Chimmy for the first time. Very quickly we developed a relationship of trust and sincere friendship. Bo and Chimmy are “kathoeys”. Together, they overcome the hardships of life that we endure when we are different and rejected. This series of black and white photos recount their life, their loneliness, their suffering, their vulnerability, and reveals their dignity, their sensitivity, their deep humanity.
Uninvited Dreams of a Bitter Response
Ritam Talukdar, is a freelance photojournalist and a story teller. Through various visual narratives, he uses while depicting the daily emotions of people. After having worked as a product photographer and children’s photographer, he developed a strong passion to find out the day to day happenings of life all around in the form of stories. He left his job and got into this wide creative field to document the daily emotions and expressions that build up a life and document the news of lost cultures to the outside world.
Apart from being a photographer, he keeps a keen interest in the field of Performance Art and has till now participated in three International Artist Residency Programs held within India. He has been featured in The Edge of Humanity Magazine, Kiosk of Democracy, Frame Press Magazine, F Stop Magazine, SDN, Spazio Fotocopia and Zeke and he did his group exhibitions regarding his photography and Digital Arts in Germany, Venice, UK, USA, Romania, Turkey etc.
The considerable change of situation in terms of the season getting colder and having shorter days is like experiencing the same seasonal patterns of major dejected episodes during a specific time of a year. The static resonance of the conscious effort to maintain a significantly jovial mood is dampened at every turn when the winter makes its mark. It’s a strange phenomenon that occurs in conjunction with changes in the season, especially during the arrival of the chilly winds. My love for this season have always been a priority, but I have always managed to extend my effort to explore the emptiness that the surrounding has to offer, resembling a part of the deserted feeling that I familiarise with. I photographed the hollowed resonance that rules the milieu, experienced by a depressed person, in terms of the landscapes and the habitants, amidst the mist that clouds your existence.
Winter generally stands for the time of carnivals, holidays; get together parties with reunions of families and close ones, but for most of the Winter, I was away from home. The feeling of staying within a packed up routine of work, often made me sum up the expressions together to give rise to an emotion that cannot stay hidden away from the general opinion of human agony. Moving far away from the urban cultures of the cityscapes, these subtle emotions are clearly visible and the solidarity can be felt more beautifully. As we embrace the gloomy presence in full glory and the tired eyes only make an attempt to regain the their consciousness with much ingratitude.
This particular attempt to bring in an emotional set of imagery comparing them with the misty landscapes, trying to depict the unsaid sadness was almost like experiencing a reverse nightmare staying as a prisoner trapped within his personal history. This is indeed something more that one can comply with.
Santasil Mallik, 22, is from Kolkata, India. Currently I am pursuing a Masters Degree in English Literature, but I am more interested in exploring the theoretical approaches that investigate the notions of fictionality and representation in art and literature. I firmly believe all works of representation are fictional, the coexistence of representation and non-fiction is a myth. My relationship with photography, therefore, tries to work beyond the idea of documenting and representing reality. Photographs act as futile traces of the memories, reflections, and actions associated with my interactions with different circumstances. They serve as testimonies to things that cannot be accommodated in the photographs themselves. This love and hate relationship with photography, precisely because of the limits of representation of the medium, induces me to keep on exploring this marginality. I am certain that I can never fixate myself to a signature photographic style of my own because my relationship with photography is always in the state of becoming and flux.
My photographs and writings have appeared on several platforms like National Geographic, Private Photo Review, Bright Lights Film Journal, F-Stop Magazine, Entropy Magazine etc. I was selected for a storytelling workshop by National Geographic Society and was also a part of an International Exchange Programme in photography with Counter Foto, Dhaka. But most of my time is spent on my conversations with myself.
Wrapped in a heavy windcheater, as I dipped my bare feet into the crystal blue waters of the Ganges they went numb in seconds. The biting December winds blowing around me at Haridwar mocked the afternoon sun that shone over the sacred town, but the scene at Har Ki Pauri, the largest ghat in Haridwar, looked no less like a beach on a fine English summer day. Every day thousands of devotees from various parts of the country gather at this ghat, where Lord Shiva stepped upon during the Vedic age, to take their much-anticipated dip (Hindi: dubki) in the river. According to mythological accounts in Hinduism, the waters of the Ganges can refurbish one’s lost energy (Atma-shakti) caused by negative actions; this, if not similar, is close to the idea of purging one’s sins. On another front, people are also aware of the scientific studies and historical records that have demonstrated the self-cleaning and anti-bacterial properties of the Ganges near its source.
The river rushed briskly at turns and became relatively calm near the wider banks, indifferent to the swelling crowd taking dips in the ghat. A range of unexpected activities, emotions, and body movements emerged when individuals confronted the river in all its turbulence and spiritual density. I started photographing various people at that precise moment when they made their decisive dubkis into the water. An infant baby immediately burst out crying as she was dipped into the bone-chilling water for a purification ceremony by her father, muscle-flexing tourists failingly grappled with the flow and coldness of the water as they dipped themselves, some of them hung on to fixated chains and railings to instantly thrust their heads into the water and come out, while others descended slowly with lips mumbling with prayers. Many Dalit children, on the other hand, curiously dived deep into the river to fish for coins and brass utensils thrown by devotees.
The photographs reflect the conviction, determination, and bodily dispositions that accompanied the people as they took their first dubkis in the river. After a week of photographing the same phenomenon, I began to notice a common bodily habitus that guides the dubkis, as well as remarkable exceptions in an individual’s approach towards the Ganges. It is impossible to locate the thoughts and intentions working at the precise moment of taking the dive; several factors traversing across personal, social, religious, and even physical circumstances dictate the way they dive into the river, are they taking dubkis for the atonement of some guilty past? Are they looking for something underwater that might make their lives better? Or are they just enjoying a refreshing bath with their friends? As an onlooker, one can at most revere those specific performances that arose due to their contact and interactions with the river. These photographs are a testimony to those short-lived moments of communication.
Originally from Coventry in the UK, I’ve been in Bangkok since 2012, prior to which I lived in Vietnam for just short of a decade. I’ve been a keen amateur photographer since about 2009, and am particularly keen on street and travel photography.
Home to over 100,000, and a no-go area for many more others, Khlongtoey (aka Khlong Toey, Khlong Toei) is one of the last remaining parts of ‘Old Bangkok’ within the central business district. There has been a port here since the late 1930s, and people from all over Thailand – and beyond – have flocked here ever since to live and work, many of them living in tiny shacks within easy reach of the port and market. This is the Khlong Toey ‘slum’, as it’s locally known, and which I put in inverted commas as it’s not really a fair description – it’s certainly not as squalid as the slums you’d find in, say, Mumbai or Manila, and most of its residents are as houseproud as their circumstances allow. But nevertheless it is a marked contrast to the nearby skyscrapers and shopping malls of Sukhumvit and Silom, an area of poverty, drugs, crime and ill-health that Bangkokians tend to avoid, seeing it only from the flyover that passes above the shacks. This project began with my first visit to the slums in 2015, following several visits to the market. I’d begun following the local football team – Port FC – in 2014, most of whose fans come from Khlong Toey, and their friendliness convinced me that a visit to the slums might not be as bad an idea as one might think. And I was right – yes, I found an area that was poor, run down, even squalid in places, but I also found the friendliest people I’ve met anywhere in the city; people always happy to have a chat, pose for photographs, and share their drinks with me (usually beer or Thai whisky). Since that first visit I’ve been back at least 40-50 times, either on my own or escorting visiting photographers, and that first impression has never changed – I’m always made welcome. Sadly, the news for Khlong Toey’s residents is not good, with the area due to be levelled to be replaced by yet more condos and shopping malls within the next couple of years, and the locals moved out to who knows where. To better conditions perhaps, but at the expense of what strikes me as a strong community spirit and an area that, for all its negative points, has bags of character. I’ve set up this website to put my favourite Khlong Toey images in one place and to show another side to the area, one that will hopefully persuade others to visit and experience this unique part of Bangkok before it disappears for good.
I am a freelance documentary and commercial photographer based in Delhi and Kashmir. I belong to a middle-class Muslim family where choosing photography was a stigma at some point in time, but I chose it against the will of my parents. Now that times have changed, my parents think about photography as a respectable profession. I have worked with local newspapers and online magazines as a photojournalist in Kashmir. Right now, I am working as a commercial freelance photographer in Delhi. I cover e-commerce, events, weddings, advertisements, and interior shoots, besides my personal projects.
The Living Landscapes is a project dedicated to my people and my Motherland which has suffered so much due to the ever growing power struggle inside and outside its borders. I want to bring to the world the untold stories of the unseen lands, where people are moulded and enriched by the beauty and love around them, not by violence and despair.
French photographer, a Chinese descendant, Thien-Ty Ly was born in Hà Tiên, Kiên Giang which is a small town neighboring the banks of Mekong. His family immigrated to Thailand before settling in Paris, France were he was raised for a large part of his young life. A four years stint in China led him to move to Hong Kong, which has now become his home and also his main source of inspiration that keeps him continuously captivated.
His photos delve into the hidden stories found in landscapes, lifestyle, portraits and far-flung travel destinations. As a practicing Architect, Thien-Ty Ly’s photography recalls the many qualities of architecture that touches the heart. Portraits that tell important, personal stories. Lifestyle shots that speak of cultural and societal perspectives blended with individual style. Landscapes and cityscapes that give indication of history and tradition, while also providing hints of a future yet to come.
“I have been documenting Hong Kong city life through street photography for six years. I am passionate to capture spontaneously by placing the human figure at the heart of my concerns and wonders about the relationship that people has with his environment in everyday moments. Inexhaustible subjects, the population of Hong Kong is very generous, as long as it does not insist too much, shoot fast, keep smiling and move forward.
I enjoy to shoot with a 35mm film cameras. For this first exhibition, I used a 35mm B&W film Hasselblad Xpan 24mm x 65mm panoramic format to capture and narrate the moments of my street photography stories.”
Ah Hong Kong, you are surely the Jackson Pollock of the cityscapes! With 7.4 million people crammed together, each of us contributing to express ourselves: gossiping, smiling, yelling, laughing, burping, staring blankly, discussing politics, trading, building, celebrating. All of these activities somehow blend into one unique city noise, accompanied by the rhythm of the Ding Ding.
However many times I walk over you, dodging the bamboo scaffolds at every construction site, avoiding a multitude of people coming from different countries and walks of life, I will never feel tired. The distraction, the curiosity is imprinted in my memories.
Walking through the streets of Hong Kong offers a sense of wonder. Has civilization evolved much since the 1900s? The chaotic arrangement of goods, the random mix of storefronts, the friendly newspaper stands, the bamboo scaffolds, the neon signs, all seem unchanged from many years ago. On the other hand, at each moment the same place can feel uniquely different. As time passes, people shuffle across. The change in weather and seasons each paint a scene of its own, depicting both the everyday chaos and the calmest moment after a rainstorm.
This fast-paced, efficient metropolis nonetheless retains its culture and festivities, allowing myself as a Chinese descendent to reminisce the celebration of the local Festivals. Civilization has embedded harmoniously within the natural landscape and it never ceases to amaze me the close proximity of the mountains to the front doors of tall skyscrapers.
The moment I step outside in the humidity of Hong Kong, I immerse myself among the masses of people, and yet, I feel somehow restful and at home.
Oleg Tolstoy’s work is firmly grounded in the real world. An intense curiosity for social interaction and human behaviour shapes his unique visual commentary. His imagery dives deep into raw human emotion, often singling out his subjects from densely populated scenes; whether that’s disillusioned cabbies in London, masked strangers in Tokyo, or distracted tourists in Florence. Oleg’s projects are united by their fresh perspectives on modern life, a feature also true of his first book, The Tolstoys in the 21st Century, which was published in 2015.
Working from his studio in London, Oleg brings his frank, honest and styled approach to both his portraiture and commercial campaigns. Sir Elton John, Cara Delevingne, Mick Jones and Andrew Lloyd Webber are among his more well known subjects, while his commercial work includes campaigns for Saatchi & Saatchi and RG/A, and clients such as Joshua Kane, Jacob’s, HMV, Corona, Budweiser, Procter & Gamble and Universal Music.
Technology lies at the heart of our progression as a race. However, while space tourism and cryptocurrencies grab the headlines, it’s the humble smartphone that is leading the way.
Our phones have changed the way we interact, with our friends and the world around us… but has this tool, built specifically to advance our communication, actually eroded the fundamental foundations of human connection?
Each iphone has ‘designed by Apple in California’ written on its back, but the majority are assembled in Shenzhen, China’s own Silicon Valley. In recent years, millions have flocked from the provinces to this highly advanced technological metropolis. They work hard, and on Dameshina Beach, one of the busiest stretches of sand in the world, they play hard. It is on these crowded shores that Oleg Tolstoy shot his new series Silicon Beach.
His images uncover the complex relationship between technology, each other, our connection with space and the experiences we have within it. As we gawp at the subjects, squinting to avoid the glare of the sun and the sea on their screens, what are we to think? Is this experience enhancement or detraction from the moment? Indeed, could this be a startling glimpse at the future of leisure as we know it? Oleg’s images dare us to question our assumptions: if others people in other places choose only to see and experience their free time in ways which make them feel comfortable, who are we to say they should do otherwise?