Jhanda

Possibly the last post of the year.   It seems that there will often be Jhanda (or Jhandi flags) in many of my compositions, that’s because they’re like Kiskadees on Guyana’s coast, everywhere!


Jhanda – 16-2644  |  Canon EOS 60D, Sigma 10-20mm  |  2016


Click on the image to see it in the Gallery


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Untitled – 16-2667

Sometimes, it’s just a photo…


Canon EOS 60D | Sigma 10-20mm


Click on the image to see it in the Gallery


2015 Deck – Week 19

My fascination with Jhandi flags continues…  either that or there’s a severe lack of things to shoot along the seawalls 🙂

We each want to be unique, to stand out from the crowd… the same crowd that we spend so many days trying to fit in with, to identify with, to be a part of.  After years of shooting everything and anything, learning bits and pieces about photography (and still learning), a portion of my photography had developed a style that had become recognizable, and the subject matter in tandem with that style of capturing and processing lead to a project called Oniabo.

During 2014 other local photogs used similar styles on similar subject matter, at first I was flattered that others were also pursuing and experimenting this way and proud of the achievements of these photogs, then I began to wonder if in this manner, I would become just another of the photogs who “also” did things this way, composed this way, processed this way…

For a while this year, I stopped seeking out the scenes which made me so happy to shoot and process, instead looking for other things to try, other avenues of expression.  One of those experiments has borne fruit, but it is not one filled with passion.  I still seek out different ways to express myself photographically, but I also cannot turn off the zeal I have for this particular type of image, so I’ve taken off the blinders that I adopted, chosen to express myself the way I want, they way I should, and I look forward to the rest of the journey with all these talented photogs, who inspire me even as they tell me that I inspire them.


Canon EOS 60D, Sigma 10-20  |  1/200s, f/10, 10mm  –  2:39pm


Click on the image to see it in the Gallery along with other images for this year’s Deck Project

Saturday Smoker in Sepia

I was actually thinking Coppertone CIgarette as a title since I actually used more of a Coppertone than a Sepiatone on this one… eventually the actual image remains mostly Untitled, except for the numeric designation of 15-5337.

Taken during the second week of this year, I gave it a single star rating so that I’d remember to go back to it for further attention.

I liked this one, even though I could not line up my composition in time for what I am accustomed to doing, getting the thirds sorted out, the vanishing point more thorough, and my lines running where I wanted…  either in spite of that or because of that, I think it came out well 🙂  As I’ve been told many times by Nikhil, we need to know the rules so that we can know when to break them effectively.


2015 | Ogle, East Coast Demerara, Guyana.


Click on the image to see it in the Gallery along with other Sepia type images in the Collection.

Colour or Monochrome

When film (or plate) was the way to capture photographs, there were many many debates, just like there are now.  They didn’t debate sensor sizes, they debated film sizes (and that had so many I won’t even start on that), and just like many enthusiasts and professionals now debate colour vs monochrome, so it also went back then.

While there were specific films developed for both types back then, in the digital age we are pretty much guaranteed that the camera you buy, whether the one in your mobile phone, compact camera, mirrorless or DSLR camera, it will in all likelihood take the photos in colour, which you can then convert to monochrome (black and white, sepia, etc) in post-process, whether in-camera or in software on the PC.  This changed when Leica developed their Leica M Monochrom, it was the first major brand to produce a high-end digital camera that produced only black and white photographs, and rumor has it Sony is working on a black and white version of their RX 1.  I don’t want to get into a debate myself over the need or desire to have a camera that only shoots monochrome, I can only say that it is unlikely I would ever buy one myself, but that is probably only my wallet talking.

In the genre of Street Photography, there is usually a preference for black and white images, but there are many many great coloured Street Photographs out there, more than you’d think.  Henri Cartier-Bresson’s work in street photography was very definitive for the genre, and all his work was in black and white, he also experimented with coloured film but was never satisfied with the results; of course, he only had access to the types of film available then (the 1950s) and if you look back at coloured prints from those days you’d see the limitations of the coloured film of the time.  I dare say that if he had lived in a later era, he may have at least given the coloured films a chance.

When I first started taking photographs on a slightly more serious basis than just snapshots, I didn’t do much black and white processing, and even when I did, it was more for the novelty than because I knew why it should be done and to which photographs.  Now I do a lot more processing in black and white…

What have I learnt that changed my views?

I’ve learnt that not all photos look good in monochrome, the tonal range and subject matter is very important for an image to look good in monochrome.  Monochrome images tend to showcase textures, shapes and form better, and by removing colour from the image you are left with just the elements that make up the composition, and if those elements are not functioning correctly in the overall composition, it will feel off, or look cluttered.

When used correctly, colour will catch the eye and hold it, this works for some compositions, but for others, that same thing tends to shift the focus of the viewer from the overall composition and have them concentrate almost solely on one portion of the image.

I’m no expert, but this is how I see it; recently I took a few photographs of some Jhandi flags on the Kingston seashore, and I chose two that I liked, and I processed them quite differently, and primarily for the reasons stated above.

This one I chose colour, because the main subject and the focus of the image is the Jhandi flags themselves, the various colours chosen as they contrast with each other, the browns of the sand and the blues of the sky.

The second image I processed in black and white to articulate the relationship between the clouds in the sky with the sands on the ground, the change from dark to light in both the sky and the land as they meet at the horizon, the sharpness of the shadow from the midday sun, and the contrast between the flags on the pole so close to the viewer against what seems to be a smaller post in the distance to the left of the frame.

These are my decisions, they may quite well not be anyone else’s choice.


In the end, these are choices I make in how I express myself artistically now, it is not how I did it a few years ago, it may not be how I do it five years from now.

Click on the images to see them in their respective galleries.

Black Flag

When I saw this flag, I knew I wanted a good photo of it, but never really processed it until now.  This was taken on a photowalk that the Guyana Photographer’s Facebook group did in January of 2013.

I think I agree with Nikhil that my definitive photograph involving Jhandi flags was this one from last year’s Deck Project, but if you’re going to photograph along the coastlands of Guyana, you most likely will end up with Jhandi flags in some images.

I don’t see the Black ones as often as I see the Red, Yellow and White ones.


Canon EOS 60D, Sigma 10-20mm  |  1/200s, f/10, 10mm, ISO100


Click on the image to see it in the Collection, along with others from the “Out and About” album

2013 Deck – Week 36

I had taken a number of photos this week at the Lusignan seawall area, but this one stood out for me from the moment I chimped and saw the image on the camera’s display screen.

I frequently see Jhandi flags along the seashore, but was never witness to the actual planting of one or seen the ritual taking place at such an event.  Needless to say, I still haven’t; but on my way back to the vehicle that day I did see some people bringing their flags to the wall, they had brought them in the back of a vehicle, and were passing them along to each other to put by the sea.

I hope you like it as much as I do.



Click on the image to see it in the Collection, along with other entries for this year’s Deck Project.