Archive for the ‘Burma’ Category

Cameras for Asia: Yangon through the lens of children

Cameras for Asia hosted a three week exhibition of the children’s images this year in Yangon at the Witness Yangon Documentary Arts Space run by Myanmar Deitta from February 16 until about March 7 (the flyer says Feb 28 but it was extended another week). This wonderful space allows international and local photographers the opportunity to exhibit FOR FREE, which is a tremendous provision for a budget such as the one Cameras for Asia runs on.

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The exhibition flyer. How good is your Myanmar? Well it doesn’t matter as it’s translated in both languages!

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Cameras for Asia Myanmar: Recent images by AYDC photographers

Featuring Yangon’s next generation of photographers. These are some of the recent images taken by the AYDC kids during Cameras for Asia classes and excursions of the life they experience in Myanmar’s biggest city. Get a snapshot of their world through these images as many of these photographs feature everyday sights, sounds, places, faces and sensations they encounter.

To read more about the recent workshops in Myanmar see this post : Behind the scenes of Cameras for Asia: Myanmar 2014. Do also note these images are available for purchase and all sales go direct to the centre.

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Action at the AYDC football grounds. Image by: Pol lu

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Hot off the press: Yangon in 25 photographs

Yangon is a city that has become familiar to me over the years and yet in the space of five years it has also become a vastly different place. Some aspects of the city are unrecognisable from 2009 and the rate of development is astounding as are the price hikes! It’s a mysterious place that is both Asia of old with crumbling edifices, hints of British colonialism and outdated, out moded ways such as trishaws and letter writing services and yet very modern as well with ATMs appearing, iPhone sellers and even the odd SUV on the road. It’s therefore a fascinating place for photography.

Having said that I didn’t get a lot of time for dedicated photography in Yangon at all during this visit. Most of my photos were taken in fleeting moments between classes, during classes or when I had gone out on errand to pick up prints or some such job.

Still I set myself the task of doing this post with just 25 shots that encapsulated this visit for me at the markets, on the boats, in downtown and Mingaladon. These photos were only taken within a 20km radius but segments of the city can seem worlds apart from the busy streets of a railway side market to the quiet of a pagoda or the sweaty dust of a brick makers workplace.

To see more images of Yangon in the database click here.

Monks

I was waiting to be picked up one day when this truck load of monks came past, all crammed in, fans held high to block the sun. When they saw me standing by the rubbish heap many craned to see me and smiles appeared.

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Behind the scenes of Cameras for Asia: Myanmar 2014

The first part of my recent overseas journey holding the Cameras for Asia workshops (see the Facebook page here for recent updates) took me back to Myanmar for my fourth visit to the Andrew’s Youth Development Centre (AYDC) on the outskirts of Yangon, the nation’s former capital and largest city.

I’ve been coming here since 2009 and it’s great to see the kids growing up. AYDC has 102 children that are housed, fed, clothed and educated in two large dormitories in the quiet neighbourhood of Minyingone. It’s very much a family for these kids, some of whom were abandoned, orphaned or their families simply can’t look after them. There’s little institutionalisation here which is great, the kids really are cared for and there are committed staff who have been here for years, and even some of the children grow up to help out at the centre. It’s great for me seeing familiar faces year after year as I feel part of the AYDC family as well.

AYDC group photo March 2014

The AYDC “family” taken in March 2014.

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Cameras for Asia: Myanmar and Nepal 2014

Cameras for Asia will jet off again this Friday for 5-6 weeks in Asia. The schedule is:

2-3 weeks in Myanmar: teaching photography, hosting an exhibition of the children’s photographs at the Myanmar Deitta gallery in Yangon (the flyer is below) and a few days of travel to Hpa’an.

2-3 weeks in Nepal: teaching photography at two centres in different parts of Kathmandu plus a week long trek to Langtang.

I am really pleased about a number of things this trip even though it is promising to be a pretty mad and hectic schedule:

– the annual Yangon photography festival is on while I’m in Myanmar and I hope there will be a chance to take the children to it
– Myanmar Deitta is a great space and I do hope there’s more opportunities for these kids through the centre in the years ahead as they offer scholarships and workshops
– I raised $1000 towards the trip expenses (donations are still welcome!)
– the incredible array of cameras that I’ve received and that keep arriving (an underwater camera, a sports action video camera etc)
– seeing all the children again in Yangon and Kathmandu – can’t wait…

Exhibition flyer.

Exhibition flyer.

The children’s images from all three centres will be posted in the coming weeks plus details of any travels/sights/images I might get to do myself.

Thanks for all the varied support I’ve received for Cameras for Asia this year.

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All images are purchasable through the Visited Planet database. Feel free to email Jo at admin@visitedplanet.com with your comments/thoughts/photo aspirations. See and learn more at www.visitedplanet.com

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