They can be seen as a survival necessity or a simple curiosity, but while visiting Africa, I began to notice these caravans here and there, sometimes used as an additional room of a modest house, an improvised hair salon, or as a local counter to serve snacks.
As beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I developed an attraction for these utilitarian shelters and the way they are given a second life.
Spectacular ritual art of Theyyam is an integral part of the rich malabar culture and tribal communities. It predates the arrival of Hinduism into Kerala and is associated with fertility rites.
The performance begins with the invocation of ancestors, local heroes or spirits, and as the performer is going into trans, he gradually metamorphoses into a divinity while dancing to the beat of folk instruments. The main purpose of this ritual is to cure diseases, and improve agricultural productivity.
They can point out the best kebab in town, or give you the pulse of the population on the next election in their country. And most of the time, it's the guy who will give you the first impression of a city, as they pick you up at the airport. In my hometown, I once had a captivating conversation with a taxi driver who was sharing his thoughts on his religion, and we continued to chat for 40 minutes whilst parked in front of my house. The morning after, there was a quran in a plastic bag attached to my front door. I like taxi drivers, as they are an infinite source of information and they are connected to real people.
With new technology, most of these structures are a relic of the past, abandonned or in the best scenario, fully automated and left without their keeper.
But their attraction remains intact, with a similar appeal of a clock tower or a windmill, they have the power to evoke an era gone by. Some of them have more character than others, svelte and elegant or eccentric and iconic.
With the advent of digital photography, high resolution panoramic images have become accessible by combining multiple photos with overlapping fields of view to produce a segmented panorama.
This technique requires technical knowledge to ensure impeccable image registration, calibration and blending, and when done correctly, the result can be no less than spectacular.
Falling apart or still in prestine conditions, old vehicles, vintage objects and eerie houses are always attractive photographic subjects.
Traveling the world wouldn't be such an incredible experience if food wasn't part of the discoveries.
Now, I prefer to eat my food and share the moment with locals, instead of taking photos of it, but every now and then, it's nice to document some markets, some landmarks and some appetizing bits.
Il faut avoir été ailleurs pour avoir un regard nouveau sur le lieu d'où l'on vient. Après avoir visité à maintes reprises l'Asie, l'Europe, l'Afrique et l'Amérique, pour ensuite m'établir à l'étranger sans jamais revenir à Montréal pendant presque 8 ans, les profonds changements de la ville m'ont ébloui et je suis en amour avec ma ville, plus que jamais.