Burma

The best way to take pictures in Burma is to take your time. After decades of being isolated because of their dictatorial regime, people are happy to talk to foreigners. They aren’t camera shy, so it’s a great country for portraits. I especially like 50mm portraits, because you can’t cheat. They tend to show the relationship between the photographer and the subject. And, to be honest, a stupid mistake forced me to shoot all of my Burmese pictures with the 50mm. My other lenses waited for me in their protection bag at home. It turned out to be a good situation, as it forced me to be creative, to move. Because of that travel, I almost never use powerful zoom lenses now.

boat_moumein
Fishermen coming back from Mawlamyine at sunset.

 

boat_inle
A fisherman on the Inle lake. The classic Burmese picture. The villages around were emptied of their “subversive elements”, as the government wanted a “clean and controlled” area in that touristic place. Don’t let yourself be fooled if you go there.

 

School boat
More Burmese boats… This is the local school boat in the laid back city of Hpa-An.

 

Portrait
The local ice-cream and yogurt maker invited me to his house to taste his grandfather’s recipe. His youngest daughter arrived and was surprised to see a tall white man at her home. She accepted me to take her portrait, and her smile only appeared when she saw the result.

 

portrait2
This man asked me to take his portrait. He probably stopped me because of what we had in common. That morning it was pouring rain I bought what everyone was using to protect themselves: the exact same hat that you see in this pictures. I put him right in the center of the picture to underline the hat.

 

Cook_Mawlamyine
This woman cooked one of the most intercultural meal I ever tasted, with Indian, Thai, Burmese, Chinese and Vietnamese influences. She shared that proud smile to her coworker when I told her it was the best meal I had in my life.

 

monks
Mawlamyine wasn’t very touristic, so these monks stop their daily task just to wave and say hello. They were very pleased when I took the camera out of the bag.

 

Bouddha_garden_zwegabin
The Mount Zwegabin may be the most amazing place I visited. On the basis of the mountain, hundreds of Buddhas are slowly being eaten by the jungle.

 

 

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