Lunatica

•December 14, 2008 • 1 Comment

12th December. the moon was closest to the earth in 15 years, and for the next 8 years to come.
The natural satellite was 14% larger and 30% brighter than usual. As a photographer, I could not miss this opportunity to shoot it; and WOW! what a result it yielded!

This event is known as PERIGEE, the closest approach of the moon to our Earth for the month as it moves along in its elliptical orbit of the Earth. And when the full moon and perigee coincide, unusually high tides are anticipated.

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Colonial Sculptures of Kolkata

•December 11, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Not much of talking, just some marble statues and sculptures.

Victoria Memorial Hall, a huge marble structure in Kolkata, hosts several marble statues like these and more. Built in 1906, this building is now almot the icon of Calcutta. It still bears the architectural legacy of the colonial period in in India.

Window Shopping

•November 23, 2008 • 2 Comments

Last few weeks, I have been taking a break from my usual sleepy weekends, and going out on photographic ventures. If you are a Kolkatan, or have ever been to this city, you know that how much this city has to offer for the photographers. Not only the usual Caucasoid-tourist favorites- the slums and the beggars, but the palatial buildings and brilliant architectures too.

However, in recent times, I have discovered a new subject for my lens- curios and showpieces at the shop windows. this post, and many more to come are an ode to the shopping paradise of Eastern India- Kolkata!

Buddhang Sharanang Gachchhami

Buddhang Sharanang Gachchhami

The Eternal Dancer

The Eternal Dancer

Konnichiwa!

Konnichiwa!

Durga Puja 2008: Day-5

•October 26, 2008 • 3 Comments

The day begins with a rather mournful tune. Today the Goddess will leave the earth, and return to her home in the heavens, leaving us waiting for another year to enjoy the celebrations.

The festivities for the day begins with all the married women, with no barring of age, playing with vermilion and applying it on each others face and forehead. After that, the Goddess is offered with sweets and betel leaf as a sign of good luck for her journey back home.

The idols are then taken to the river where they are immersed. It is believed that the river Ganga leads the Goddess safely back to the Heavens.

celebration knows no age

celebration knows no age

Even the guests enjoy it too!

Even the guests enjoy it too!

Baghbazar Ghat

Baghbazar Ghat

The last prayers

The last prayers

Durga Puja 2008: Day-4

•October 22, 2008 • Leave a Comment

The last day to view the Goddess in the pandal. The last day of the worship. The next day will witness the departure of the Goddess from the earth back to the heavens. This is day when the crowd is at its most. Some of the big and most famous pujas of the city receive footfalls of about 15,000-20,000 at certain points of time.

The buses and the underground railways ply throughout the night, like all other vehicles. Still you struggle to get a foothold on the buses or the trains. The city does not sleep this night. The next day, it will all end, for this year at least.

Arati- the special prayer offerings

Arati- the special prayer offerings

Yeah, I know there is a bit of shake. But it was handheld guys, with a full 1 sec shutter speed!

Look Up!

Look Up!

Framed, with light and shade

Framed, with light and shade

Red, the color of fury!

Red, the color of fury!

Durga Puja 2008: Day-3

•October 21, 2008 • Leave a Comment

The 3rd day. This is the day when the crowd really starts to build up. The pandals all over the city receive the highest footfalls. People from the suburbs as well as far flung villages arrive to the city to have a glimpse of the best pandals and idols of the city.

People from other states as well as other countries frequent the city too, to be a part of the spectacle.

On this day, a special prayer is performed. And beliefs say, anything wished from the core of the hearts during the special prayer, will be granted by the Goddess.

And of course, this day has the very special feast, which is actually a part of the ritualistic prayer itself.

Patterns in Light

Patterns in Light

Bam Bhole- A decorative piece at the pandal

Bam Bhole- A decorative piece at the pandal

Can you believe? this is only a temporary structure made of plywood and tapauline.

Can you believe? this is only a temporary structure made of plywood, thermocol and tarpaulin!

Stone chariot of Hampi- made of polystyrene (thermocol). Made in Kolkata

Stone chariot of Hampi- made of polystyrene (thermocol). Made in Kolkata

Durga Puja 2008: Day-2

•October 20, 2008 • Leave a Comment

It is the 2nd day of the festival. The entire city is decorated, and the entire population is humming the festive tune. You wake up to the drum beats from your nearest pandal. Right after brushing and quick bath, you rush out to join your friends who are already at the festive arena.

After a long day of chatting and gossiping, it is time to go out to visiti some of the best pujas of the city in the evening.

The classical is never out of styleThe classical is never out of style
Pandal decoration using traditional Bengali handicraft items

Pandal decoration using traditional Bengali handicraft items

The flow of humanity

The flow of humanity

Durga- the Destroyer of Evil

Durga- the Destroyer of Evil