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First Glimpse Of Dharavi

What a difference crossing the tracks make. On one side, the chaotic and bustling Mumbai, filled with a mix of stores and street side sellers. As soon as you take the pedestrian bridge over the train tracks at Mahim Station, this is the view that greets you.

It's still chaotic and filled with activity, but there's a real sense of poverty here. Buildings are in disrepair, and sanitation has dropped off a cliff in comparison to the other side of the tracks. The struggle to climb out of poverty looks 100x more challenging here than elsewhere.

Read on for more details including how to visit Dharavi: https://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/first-glimpse-of-dharavi

#dharavi #mumbai #india #slum #poverty #travel #photography
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Peacock Gate

In Rajasthan, it seems like every city has its own palace. I'm not sure if any two cities had the same ruler build their palaces, but irregardless they're a joy to visit. There's a real regal elegance and a sense of history. You can even see the British Colonial influences from time to time.

Read the rest of this post: https://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/peacock-gate

#HDR #AuroraHDR #Jaipur #PeacockGate #india #travel #photography
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Hall Of Repetition

I spent an early morning at the Taj Mahal to take in sunrise and rush around in a desperate attempt to get a few key photos before the place was overwhelmed with tourists. On my eventual way out, I came across this geometrically pleasing hallway.

If you like the photo, don't forget to +1, follow me, and share! :)

Read the rest of this post: https://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/hall-of-repetition

#HDR #AuroraHDR #TajMahal #Agra #UNESCO #Travel #Photography
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Inside The Complex

I spent a few days in Udaipur for a friend's wedding, which occupied most of my time there. I did get a short opportunity to sneak away and check out the City Palace by Lake Pichola. It's easily a place you could lose yourself for an hour or two strolling the grounds, and going room to room within the palace walls.

Read the full blog post: https://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/inside-the-complex

#HDR #AuroraHDR #CityPalace #Udaipur #India #Travel #Photography
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Mumbai Raw

This is the real Mumbai. It's not always the cleanest or the prettiest, but it's what happens day to day. A small enclosed section of the Crawford Market has a number of butchers cutting up sheep and fowl. Is that..a tree stump? Being used as a cutting block? Sure seems that way.

Visiting on a Sunday is not a great time for the market, as many of the stalls are closed. Mumbai in general, on a Sunday, is pretty quiet and traffic is light. Great for seeing a lot of the city in the day, but not as great if you go to a market like this one and it's pretty quiet. Then again, some other markets were super bustling so check ahead of time when is good to visit a particular market.

In India I found that there was a bit of a mix in terms of friendliness towards photographers. I would say most people were fine and not bothered. This butcher, clearly was happy to have his photo taken. But some people, and as is the case in many countries, especially women, are not as happy about having their picture taken. So always ask/nod/pantomime some form of approval first if you're going to be up close.

Blogged: https://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/2016/11/2/mumbai-raw

#Butcher #CrawfordMarket #Mumbai #India #MahatmaJyotibaPhuleMandai #portrait #travel #photographer #asia #blood #brains #sheep #rawmeat #meat #treestump #asia #life #work #everyday #portraitphotography #travelphotography #인도 #뭄바이 #아시아
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Taj Mahal

It's been called the greatest monument of love in the world, and I would agree. A symbol as synonymous with India as the Eiffel Tower is to France., the White House to America, or The Great Wall to China. For my first trip to India, I could not imagine being able to say I went to India, yet somehow didn't manage to find time to see the Taj.

Up till this point, I had imagined the Taj Mahal to be a beautiful building, but, a building. Not a sweeping, dramatic landscape like The Grand Canyon that's going to cause my jaw drop as I let out an involuntary "wow." Arriving before sunrise, so I could be one of the first in to see the Taj - and, quite importantly, get a few photos without throngs of tourists - I was excited to finally see it. It wasn't until I passed through the entrance at first light, with my eyes setting their gaze upon it, did I realize just how beautiful this mausoleum truly is.

Constructed of translucent, white Makrana marble, the structure literally sparkles and shines as it captivates you. All told, there are 28 different types of precious and semi-precious stones inlaid into the marble. Up close it can seem almost as if the marble was painted, but in fact it was meticulously carved out, with the stones glued in and finished perfectly. Sadly, during British rule some of these stones were chiseled out by soldiers and government officials. It makes me wish I could see it when it was built, glimmering in the sun.

Viewing the Taj Mahal is an experience. You can relish in its grandeur and symmetry, or get up close to see some of its fine details. Currently, it's undergoing a cleaning due to the effects of years of pollution, which is why you see scaffolding on the minaret to the right. The minaret on the left, has already been cleaned. Apparently it will take about another year for the full cleaning to be completed.

I wish I could say I got that perfect shot of the Taj Mahal, but the scaffolding does detract a bit. On the other hand, in another year it could be decades before scaffolding is seen again for another cleaning. Either way, I was quite glad my itinerary worked out such that I visited on the last day of my trip to India. It was the perfect way to end the trip.

Blogged: http://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/2016/10/28/taj-mahal

#TajMahal #Taj #Love #HDR #AuroraHDR2017 #UNESCOWorldHeritageSite #UNESCO #travel #photography #landscape #moghul #architecture #agra #india #asia #makrana #marble #majestic #reflection #hdrphotography #travelphotography #인도 #아그라 #타지마할
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Icemen

What's the benefit to landing in Mumbai at 4:40 in the morning and then immediately touring for the next 13-14 hours? An early start means you can see some cool local stuff you might not otherwise get to see. One such place was a quick trip to Sassoon Docks.

Where there's fresh fish, there's bound to be some ice. As the fishermen unload their catches to be sold at the market, there's an active but subdued atmosphere. I walk by a man brushing his teeth, readily apparent of my presence, but at the same time, unperturbed. Being one of the few docks in the city open to the public, occasionally a tourist must show up here and there, but at least for that day, it was just me.

Blogged: http://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/2016/10/27/icemen

#SassoonDocks #Mumbai #India #travel #photography #ice #dock #work #everyday #life #asia #bombay #explore #travelphotography #people #sonyrx1rm2 #뭄바이 #인도
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Ranakpur Jain Temple

I was quite taken in by this temple. It's a Jain temple, a religion that I think isn't that well known outside of India. I only heard about it within the last few years, and don't know that much about it overall, besides it's emphasis on non-violence. Mahatma Gandhi was influenced by Jainism during his youth, and his application of the Jain principle 'Ahimsa' of non-violence was prevalent in the development of his own Satyagraha (truth force) principle.

I probably spent a solid 1.5 hours walking around the temple. It's about 40,000 sq. ft., or to put that in perspective, a pretty decently sized Best Buy. Instead of admiring electronics I was admiring the amazing details found everywhere you look. It's truly an amazing temple and well worth going a couple hours out of your way from Udaipur to see it. I'm so glad I did.

Blogged: http://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/2016/10/26/ranakpur-jain-temple

#HDR #AuroraHDR2017 #ranakpur #jain #temple #architecture #india #travel #photography #inside #jainism #marble #rajasthan #religion #spiritual #carvings #asia #hdrphotography #travelphotography #인도 #라자스탄 #아시아
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The Haircut

Throughout the various cities I visited in India, it was pretty common to come across some street-side barbers. It's always interesting to see how different some of the everyday tasks you might do can be so different in another country. Used to going into a building with a pretty hygienic looking set up? This street-side barber might not be for you.

I was just walking down the street of this small village in Rajasthan, trying to snap a few photos when I inadvertently came across this barber. I was actually trying to get a photo of a cow when a woman practically dragged me over to take this photo. Who am I to complain about taking more photos?

Blogged: http://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/2016/10/25/the-haircut

#haircut #barber #rajasthan #india #saryavillage #gogunda #blackandwhite #monochrome #travel #photography #asia #life #travelphotography #blackandwhitephotography #portraitphotography #인도 #라자스탄
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Inside Dharavi

I recently came back from an 8 day trip to India. It was my first time there, and a relatively short one at that considering the primary reason for my trip was for a friend's wedding. It meant I had to be a bit creative to cram in as much as possible into the trip. For a country that is roughly 1/3rd the size of the U.S., but with just over 4x the population, I largely just scratched the surface. But every once in a while, I think I got beneath it, to take a look at the real life, and how people are living.

As of 2014, 58% of the population were living on less than $3.10 per day. While different organizations use different methods to calculate the poverty line, you can say that roughly 12-18% of the population lives below the poverty line. For a country as populous as India, that means that roughly 20% of the world's poorest people live in India.

One such concentration of those poor is in the Dharavi slum. Located in Mumbai, it is the largest slum in Asia - the other Asian slums being in neighboring Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Walking through the slum, you can see the cramped conditions people live in. While the slum does have some basic services for electricity, water, police, and so on, it's safe to say that the standards of those services, notably sanitation, are not great.

Photography inside Dharavi is a bit of a touchy subject. Some residents dislike being photographed, and tour companies come under pressure to not be seen as exploiting the poor. It's a bit ironic since elsewhere in India, namely in the Andaman Islands, the indigenous Jarawa tribe is showcased as if they're in some sort of human zoo. I just want to document the current state of life, and hope that's what I'm achieving.

One of the things I've found over the years is that if you carry a big dSLR or interchangeable lens camera with big zooms, besides standing out, people will assume you are a professional photographer. Sometimes that can work to your advantage, but in situations like this, it almost never does. Using a smaller camera is disarming in comparison, and will let you get the shots you want without causing as much grief. This is exactly the reason why I'm a huge fan of the Sony RX1 series of cameras. While it might not have a zoom, getting full-frame, 35mm quality in a tiny package is amazing. I used the Sony RX1RmII to shoot throughout Dharavi. Hope you will enjoy my photos from Dharavi and throughout India in the posts ahead.

Blogged: http://www.aisleseatplease.com/blog/2016/10/24/inside-dharavi

#dharavi #daravi #mumbai #bombay #india #slum #poverty #squalor #dailylife #life #travel #photography #sony #rx1rii #asia #street #elephant #shantytown #vehicle #travelphotography #streetphotography #인도 #슬럼 #뭄바이
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