Clicking into Cambodia gear

As I thought, time has resolved the hardship of returning defeated. We had an extended session this morning in a local village. We arrived by 7am and might try an even earlier start tomorrow. Friendly people, busy shops and small markets, good light, all of these meant excellent opportunities. The children here have virtually nothing – some literally have no clothes. They run around and play alongside the chickens scratching in the dirt, the cats stretched out on the tables, dogs sniffing and growling for snacks (all fresh, no Kibble here) and lots of busy parents and grandparents. Some children had, I suspect, never seen a Caucasian face before. Remarkably they screech and laugh and rush you, eager to have their photograph taken, showing every sign of a happy childhood, unspoiled by computers, smart phones (surely an oxymoron?), PlayStations, or indeed any toys as far as we could see. The most obvious possession seemed to be the bicycle. Teenagers and adults were playing a Sunday game of volleyball, burning off what seem to be unlimited reserves of energy. We were stopped by a couple of Indians who were visiting a nearby mosque. They spoke no Khmer but were similarly enjoying the ambience even without a camera. We had a most agreeable chat before we each moved on.

Here then are some of the images from today. Maybe not prize winners but I was happy to be getting more familiar with my 24mm Summilux and shooting wide-ish and low at times. The X100s also had a bit of an air. The first 2 images are pre-breakfast and the rest from the village.

Loadingcargo (1 of 1)

Girl and Scooter in the dawn light

Girl and Scooter in the dawn light

Staring Eyes

Staring Eyes

Portrait of Girl

Portrait of Girl

KidsGroupmono (1 of 1)


The Cat's Carers

The Cat’s Carers

ManandChild (1 of 1)

Woman and Child

Woman and Child

We produced our first video presentations this morning and several of these went into to my 12 picks for the first 4 days. Selectivity is key to quality – without it the workshop loses its purpose. Tomorrow the F8 team has an official rest day. So the plan is to go out early before the rest day starts!!

35 thoughts on “Clicking into Cambodia gear

  1. Those eye in Staring Eyes, and the adorable way her hair naturally curls around her face. Her innocence is priceless. The rest are wonderful as well. Such beautiful people. πŸ™‚ You have captured them well, Andrew. πŸ™‚

  2. Andrew your most recent post – “The Day Off That Wasn’t” doesn’t have an option for commenting – yet you have requested feedback on the children of the village – colour verses BandW . So I’ll respond in here for now. First I love the Laughing Muslim Man – wonderful. Now for the children. The B and W is certainly more timeless – and has a certain power, but for me the colour photograph is more delicate and the skin-tones are so much softer and purer. So for a poster about something I’d use the B and W making a statement, for telling the pictorial story the colour takes me there.

    • What Just Rod said. More or less word for word. The laughing police Muslim man is wonderful.

      I thought the B&W of the kids was too harsh. You must have fiddled with it. I too loved the softness of the colour, especially of the girl on the right – it just draws you right in to the photo. She is the star of the photo in colour. Beautiful.

      And yeah, I couldn’t comment either. Got a big catch up to do on your posts πŸ˜€

      • Welcome back!! I woke up at 4am – no idea why – and discovered the comments problem. Fiddled for 40 minutes – no luck. Deleted the old post and copied everything into a duplicate. I can see a comments box so I hope everybody else can. Internet here is dire and WP driving me mad.

    • Thanks Rod. The B&W is quite harsh – maybe to harsh – I used a preset to convert and I probably need to do a softer version. I actually like the colour version but sometimes a second opinion is helpful. Much appreciated. Comments problem baffling so have reposted. Aaargh.

  3. Good job, Andrew and glad to hear that the workshop is a great success for you! My favourite of this serie is the girl “Staring eyes” and the boys. Very cool!

  4. Andrew, these are all so interesting with the first image being my favorite. The color is outstanding. Muslin girl posed on black is excellent. Of course I like the child holding the pretty cat. Actually these are all quite good. I just narrowed these down to personal favorites The early light makes a huge difference. For street portraits later in the day, can you use diffused flash (if you wanted) in order to reduce harsh lighting?

    • I always think of you when I post the animal images, Yvonne, in the hope you will enjoy them. I don’t have a flash for the Leica but the X100s has a small built in flash. The muslim girl was shot using an off-camera flash, which the group has available – soft box, wireless trigger – gives wonderful results.

      • Thanks Andrew, for the reply.And thanks for answering my question re: using diffused flash.. I wondered if maybe that might be how you achieved such good lighting .Or that you simply covered the flash head. Flimsy gauze has worked pretty well for me a few times, eons ago. At any rate the photos are very entertaining and I am enjoying your hard work. The kitty is a pretty one and It is good to see that the children love their pets.

  5. The B&W pic of the group of boys is my favourite. I especially like how the little one in the foreground is looking into the camera with a dubious look!

  6. A totally different life, Andrew, with different values and ideals,.. who’s to say which life gives the most in spiritual benefit, … and the oxymoron of Smart Phone, had me laughing …All photo’s were fantastic to me, .. speaking of a split second slice of life… and the ‘eyes’, always I stare back at the eyes, … the children are so sombre and beautiful in their own right… Such marvellous and varied photo’s. many thanks for sharing them.. xPenx

    • Thanks for commenting, Pen. I have ben trying to comment on your moonlight poem tonight but the internet is so erratic I’m not sure I am succeeding. Another week of hit and miss with the blog I’m afraid.

      • That’s ok Andrew, but you persevered and many thanks for commenting… loved the follow up photo’s on the next blog.. Keep clicking,… makes for such wonderful viewing and almost (I did say almost) makes up for not being there to see the sights and people first hand… πŸ™‚ xPenx

  7. The dawn pictures are really beautiful Andrew. But the portrait of Girl is stunning. A lovely collection evoking quite different emotions. Thanks for the early start.

    • Thanks Rod. The dawn here is spectacular. Extraordinary colours. There is sadly much poverty in Cambodia but the people are incredibly cheerful. We have something to learn but also give. The girl is the only posed shot – but literally posed on a side street. Her patience was surprising!

  8. I am very glad you are getting your bearings, Andrew. Portrait of a girl is a fine image. Nice sidelighting and her clothing has such a nice warm color and, of course, the eye contact is most appealing.
    Are the boaters readying for fishing? That is also a very nice shot.

    • Steve, the girl was posed. We used a soft box, wireless triggered flash and a black backdrop. She was one of several people who helped us get strong images. From young to old they were happy to pose. Imagine that in HK or NY!!!! Yes the fishing boats will go out but there seems to be a lot of land reclamation going on here so I guess they have a longer trip now.

  9. Some very nice images today Andrew, the group of children especially caught my eye. The 2nd from left boy has movie star looks. I like your idea on the hands as well. Guilty of assumptions here but I didn’t realize there was a Muslim element to Cambodia.

    • Thanks Barry. We shot in a Muslim village. Found by accident a while ago. Small and I suspect a tiny minority nationally. Very relaxed – their dress was conservative but tolerant of us. Lovely people. It’s so easy to stereotype but these people are more worried about their next meal than politics. The kids group is nice but I’m going to crop out the one on the extreme right. Makes a better image.

    • Agree on the crop, he looks out of place with his fancy white tee and lighter complexion. He’s probably the mayor’s kid…lol. Good luck on the balance of your junket and thanks again for sharing your experience with your readership.

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