Travel Photography in Rajasthan India continuous…vibrant colors, amazing architecture in Bikaner and Mandawa.
Rajasthan’s colors on the road & the
amazing Architecture... seeing is believing.
© Gunther Deichmann - along the road near a small
village near Bikaner, Rajasthan
Havallis are large mansions that were built and lived in by either wealthy merchants or favored ministers.
You find Havallis throughout Rajasthan but in Mandawa they are very special, here you see Havallis with amazing paintings in great details on the outer walls.
© Gunther Deichmann - the back of the BHANWAR NIWAS a Heritage Hotel in Bikaner, it goes without saying... if you in Bikaner you have to spend the night at this truly amazing place. www.bhanwarniwas.com In some of my future blogs I introduce you to the interior of this Hotel.
Today, the world comes to this storybook town to see its colorful frescoes on every subject under the sun, that is, ranging from the religious to the erotic; from copies of popular English prints to witty social satire, rendered in the inimitable style of the local artist. And perhaps the best place to discover the legacy of Shekhawati is from the comfort of Castle Mandawa, a fortress, now converted into a luxurious heritage hotel.
© Gunther Deichmann - a well preserved Havalli in Mandawa, Rajasthan India.
I forgot who told me during my visit to this amazing town, apparently Mandawa and Venice in Italy are the only two places in the world showcasing this type of paintings on the outside walls... a real outdoor Art Gallery.
Mandawa In the heart of the Shekhawati region of Rajasthan is the beautiful small town Mandawa, known throughout the state for its forts and havelis. The structures of this place reminds one of the cultural and social hotspot this place used to be in the bygone era.
Mandawa was settled and fortified in 18th century by the dominant merchant families of the region. The wealthy businessmen of the village constructed many havelis and baolis with colored painting adorning their walls. Later on, with the migration of these merchant families, their old settlements remained in total obscurity with no one to look after them. Despite the time lapse and ignorance about these visual and architectural extravaganzas, their attraction did not fade and today they are some of the major attractions for the visitors to Rajasthan.
For the latest images on Rajasthan in India please go to my selection upper right hand side on this Blog or click this LINK http://www.deichmann-photo.com/page2/page2.html
More Images from India and Rajasthan are also on my PhotoShelter Gallery
Photography & Aperture 2... plus a Taste of India at the Hyatt Hotel Manila, Philippines with two chefs from The Leela Kempinski Hotel and Residences in New Delhi
Photography & Aperture 2 plus a Taste of India
during the month of June and July in Manila &
Image above: Taken at the Spice Court Hari Bhawan, Achrol House Jaipur
Thanks to Kuldeep Singh and India Tourism in Rajasthan for a fantastic lunch.
If you pass through Jaipur make sure one of your stops is at the
Spice Court, the food is out of this world.
Lets talk about food; Indian cuisine has always been one of my favorites, I like it a bit spicy and exotic and Indian food is just that. You have to try some of those vegetarian dishes; just thinking about gets me hungry. Too spicy? Don’t worry you can always ask the Chefs to keep it mild, but the taste…oh boy.
During my recent visit to India I sampled the real Indian cuisine, now the Hyatt Hotel is bringing you the taste of India to Manila.
At the same time some of my Images from India will also be on display at the Hyatt Hotel during the flavors of authentic Indian cuisine at the Market Café. But that’s not all, we also have some seminars at the Power Mac Center in Greenbelt 3 during the month of June and July.
For more details contact the PMC at: http://www.powermaccenter.com/training.php
Aperture 2 & beyond… 7000 images later, a Journey through Rajasthan, India.
I talk about my experience on the road, the workflow and how to deal with large number of images after the shoot, but most important the things you can do with your images using the integration on the Mac, you be amazed by the possibilities.
Eg. producing a Book using Aperture 2, creating your own flyers and posters using Pages from iWork ’09, making Keynote presentations and using your own sound recordings from your iPhone and mixing it later in GarageBand.
June 19 - 6:00PM to 7:00PM (seminar)
June 27 - 3:00PM to 5:00PM (workshop)
July 10 - 6:00PM to 7:00PM (seminar)
July 18 - 3:00PM to 5:00PM (workshop)
In the meantime you can check out some authentic Indian cuisine at the Hyatt Hotel in Manila, for more info see the Press release from the Hyatt Hotel below:
“A TASTE OF INDIA” AT MARKET CAFÉ
4- 21 June 2009
From 4th to 21st of June, “A Taste of India” brings the diverse and varied flavours of authentic Indian cuisine to Market Café at Hyatt Hotel and Casino Manila in the form of popular dishes from north India that will spice up the sumptuous buffet.
The hotel has invited Chef Ashwani Kumar and Chef Chandramani Geeband, two chefs from The Leela Kempinski Hotel and Residences in New Delhi to create an explosion of Indian spices for a truly splendid culinary feast.
Delight in the appealing tastes and textures of Tandoori Chicken, one of the most popular Indian roast chicken delicacies, Paneer Ki Khurchan, Murg Ka Parcha, Subz Ka Palao, Seekh Kebab and more. Find yourself indulging in unlimited Subz Biryani, Navrattan Pulao and luscious mouthwatering desserts, all for the same price as the regular buffet – just PhP1,388 nett per person for lunch and PhP1,518 nett per person for dinner.
Discover the distinct flavours and unique taste of India exclusively at the Market Café at Hyatt Hotel and Casino Manila.
“A Taste of India” is supported by Business World, Manila Bulletin, Foreign Post, What’s On Expat, 105.1 Crossover, RJ 100, Magic 89.9 and The Leela Kempinski Hotel and Residences.
For further enquiries or to make a reservation, please call 245 1234.
Back to India & the final details on the GD PhotoWorkshop in Cambodia “Angkor Wat and beyond” in September 2009 will be announced shortly.
The Colors of Rajasthan India continuos...
© Gunther Deichmann - “I been watched”
Jodhpur Rajasthan India , April 2009
Since my return from Bangkok and the TDEX show I have been working on my project from India, but a lot more work has to be done, I post some more details during the month of June. To view some selected images from India click this LINK or go to http://www.deichmann-photo.com/india.html
By end of next week you find also the final details on our upcoming GD Photo-Workshop on my
GD Photo-Workshop Site, already booked participants however will receive an email within the next few days with all the information.
We are almost fully booked, so if you’re interested please contact me ASAP, final closing date for bookings will be June 22, 2009.
As mention previously in my Blog, this GD PhotoWorkshop will go beyond Angkor Wat and for the first time we have included the Tonle Sap Lake and some other interesting places seldom visit by Tourists.
“6 nights and 7 days from the 13th until the 19th of September”
Please subscribe to my Blog & stay tuned for the final details shortly...
Where have all the Tourists…People gone? The new International Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok looked deserted. Who is to blame? A coincident?
Where have all the people gone?
© Gunther Deichmann - Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Airport
When I arrived at the Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport a couple of days ago, I could not help noticing how empty it appeared. A coincident or was it due to the Red and Yellow shirts, the Swine Flu, the current Economic crisis or the simple off season?
I passed through this Airport many times on my way to Cambodia or other destinations, but for the first time I have seen it that deserted.
© Gunther Deichmann - Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International
Airport, Thai Airways Check in Counter
© Gunther Deichmann - Bangkok Suvarnabhumi
International Airport, empty shops.
When checked in at airline counter I looked around and jokingly asked the attendant if I was the only one on the flight to Manila? She simply replied… the flight is empty. Wow! Sure enough as I found out later, not totally empty but almost.
Normally I have to cue up during my check in but this time I was done in seconds and had plenty of time to wonder around taken photos of empty shops and hallways.
Who is to blame? Your guess is as good then mine and I dare not speculate...
© Gunther Deichmann - Even the news stand is empty
© Gunther Deichmann - Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Airport,
No passengers and empty shops
© Gunther Deichmann - Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Airport,
All the above images have been taken during a two hour
time span using the Leica D-Lux 4
Nikon D700 at 6400 ISO in Bangkok Thailand...the final frame after the Thailand Dive & Travel Expo
However Tony and myself dreamed up an interesting new project but more on that later, sounds familiar... my suspense again.
Now I am back in Manila and working on my project from India, which I can announce shortly
The last frame...
© Gunther Deichmann, looking across the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok at 8:00 PM
Nikon D700 - ISO 6400 - F: 5.6 -
using the Nikon VR 24 to 120 Zoom, handheld at a 1/4 of a second.
On my last day in Bangkok I took the opportunity and shot some frames across the Chao Phraya River which runs through the heart of Bangkok using my Nikon D700 at ISO 6400, lets call it “The last frame”. Amazing how the Nikon D700 can handle this type of situation, even at the high ISO the noise is acceptable. Of course not for huge blowups, but good enough for the web or smaller reproductions in print, and if it gets too noisy at even higher ISO (24000) then we can always resort to Noise Ninja a separate Plug-in for Aperture 2.
Underwater Photography & Aperture 2 during and after the Thailand Dive and Travel Expo, part 2
Sunday the 17 of May, the last Aperture 2 seminar in the open area at the Thailand Dive and Travel Expo, a very interesting crowd and some photographer even brought their MacBook Pro’s with them. The scheduled one-hour basic Aperture 2 seminar turned into a serious two-hour session.
Later in the week I also caught up with my long time friends, well known Photo-Journalist John Everingham and Chris Ryan in Bangkok, talked about the good old days and chatting way over a few beers overlooking the Chao Phraya River which flows through the heart of Bangkok.
Tony Wu’s Sunday Seminar on Underwater Photography at TDEX
Tony is getting ready for his Underwater Photography Seminar
Even a Buddhist Monk showed up at the TDEX...thinking about going diving?
After the show we carried on until the early hours in the morning at our Hotel Coffee Shop
John Everingham, GD and Chris Ryan, cooling of with some
Beers at the Chao Phraya River
This is the nice part about Travel Photography catching up with old friends and making new ones, tomorrow it is back to Manila where I have a lot more work to do on my India Project...but more on that later.
Special thanks again to the organizers from the TDEX and of course to Mean and Aye from Fins for making my stay in Bangkok so enjoyable.
Underwater Photography & Aperture 2 at the Thailand Dive and Travel Expo TDEX in Bangkok
© Gunther Deichmann - yesterdays sunset from our Hotel Roof
Sukhumvit Road Bangkok
As you might know I am currently in Bangkok attending the TDEX show with my good friends from FINS, I have to admit I am pleasantly surprised at the show and the attendance, it is quiet a crowd.
For an in depths report you have to check out the FINS website at: http://www.finsonline.com/
there you find the latest Blogs, Videos and information from this years TDEX show, plus a lot more.
© Gunther Deichmann - the crowd at the TDEX Bangkok, Thailand
The Fins Team is working non stop conducting live interviews which will be featured on their website, I keep myself busy with some Aperture 2 Seminars on Saturday and Sunday explaining the basics on Aperture. What is Aperture 2 and how it can help you in your Photography.
Sharing a last minute joke with Mean from FINS, before the start of my
Aperture 2 seminar. Mean did a great job with all the translations for our Thai audience
Tony Wu a world class underwater Photographer is having his own Seminars on basic Underwater Photography and how to light your subjects below the waves.
Check out Tony’s stunning underwater images at: http://www.tonywublog.com/
© Gunther Deichmann - Tony Wu during his Underwater Photography seminar
I keep this blog short today, have to run for my Sunday session on Aperture, but before I do I like to take this opportunity and thank Fins and the TDEX organizers for inviting me to this truly great show in Thailand.
Aye explaining some equipment from Light & Motion,
Underwater Housing and Lighting equipment
The FINS Team hard at work, from left: Tony Wu, Mean and Aye
Once I have returned I post some more images and stories from this years TDEX show in Bangkok.
Photography, Animals & Fossils from the Thar Desert in Rajasthan India... a large & arid region in the northwestern part of the Indian subcontinent.
Sure enough, fossils have been found in the Thar Desert, from plant life, whole fossilized tree trunks and one of my favorite the Ammonites.
While in Jaisalmer I could not help myself and asked some questions where and how I might be able to see at least some of those fossils.
© Gunther Deichmann - Fossilized Ammonites and shells from
the Thar Desert, Rajasthan, India
My Guide took me one afternoon into a very small side street to a small shop, which was selling gemstones, and other precious stones, quiet a treasure cove as I discovered.
After some questions the owner of the shop pulled out some Ammonites and shells from the area. Not in perfect condition but never the less I found my Fossils, I only wish I would have had more time and look for them myself, but then there is always next time.
© Gunther Deichmann - A wild Deer in the Thar Desert near Manvar ,
quiet a common sight in this area, Rajasthan India
© Gunther Deichmann - One morning on my way for breakfast at the
Oasis Resort of Manvar in the Thar Desert I spotted this Lizard right in
front of my room, sitting on a hedge not moving at all...a perfect model.
© Gunther Deichmann - Wild Peacock in flight...and I thought they cant fly,
well only a short distance like this one. Manvar in the Thar Desert, Rajasthan, India
Read below some more interesting facts about the Thar Desert Geology, and the Animal life that thrives today in this arid place of India.
The Thar Desert also known as the Great Indian Desert, is a large, arid region in the northwestern part of the Indian subcontinent. With an area of more than 200,000 sq. km (77,000 sq. mi.) it is world's 18th largest desert. It lies mostly in the Indian state of Rajasthan, and extends into the southern portion of Haryana and Punjab states and into northern Gujarat state. In Pakistan, the desert covers eastern Sind province and the southeastern portion of Pakistan's Punjab province. The Cholistan Desert adjoins the Thar desert spreading into Pakistani Punjab province.
It is a desolate country where sand is piled up into huge wind blown dunes. On the whole the Thar Desert slopes imperceptibly towards the Indus Plain and surface unevenness is mainly due to sand dunes. The dunes in the south are higher, rising sometimes to 152 m whereas in the north they are lower and rise to 16 m above the ground level.
Stretches of sand in the desert are interspersed by hillocks and sandy and gravel plains. Due to the diversified habitat, the vegetation and animal life in this arid region is very rich. About 23 species of lizard and 25 species of snakes are found here and several of them are endemic to the region.
The Desert National Park, Jaisalmer, spread over an area of 3162 km, is an excellent example of the ecosystem of the Thar Desert, and its diverse fauna. Great Indian Bustard, Blackbuck, chinkara, desert fox, Bengal fox, wolf, desert cat etc. can be easily seen here. Seashells and massive fossilized tree trunks in this park record the geological history of the desert.
The Thar’s geological history; based on the study of fossils found in the area is interesting. The area has been in and out of sea at least four times during the last two hundred and eighty million years.
It appears that this area was under sea in the early Triassic period. The sea withdrew after twenty five million years and the sediments were uplifted animal fossils of that period are found in the rocks in many areas.
Again, after about twenty five million years this area came under the sea. The limestone and the sandstone of Jaisalmer with their fossils of Ammonites were deposited during this period.
NEW India images residing now in my PhotoShelter Archives...including Pink Floyd “Wish You Where Here”
© Gunther Deichmann - Pushkar in Rajasthan of all places...
you never know what you come across in India, from holy
and sacred Rats to Pink Floyd “Wish You Where Here”
It is done & much sooner then I expected… the Taj Mahal & Rajasthan high res.Images are now available in my PhotoShelter Archives and can be viewed in two NEW Galleries. This was made only possible in such a short time with the integration & speed of Aperture 2 and PhotoShelter…
The NEW Galleries:
1. New! 100 selected images only; some of my personal favorites from the Taj Mahal & Rajasthan, here is the direct LINK
2. New! A broader selection of over 400 images from the Taj & Rajasthan and the Thar Desert, the direct LINK
If you’re searching for particular images, use the search field option implemented on all pages on my Web site or at this Blog (Stock Photos Search Archives, upper left hand side). You always find the latest image PhotoShelter Galleries at the top left hand side in my Gallery collections.
There is still some more work to be done, fixing some captions, detailed descriptions and uploading some additional images… the Rats are also not there yet. (Remember from my previous Blog on the sacred Rats) More updates will follow shortly.
I have to admit burning a bit of Midnight Oil the past few days going through thousands of images, but now it is out of my system. The images are safe and sound in my PhotoShelter Archive, plus I done all my other backups too.
The only thing missing now is to update my main website with the new category “India” this will be implemented by late Tuesday this week.
Just one more...
© Gunther Deichmann - no explanation required...
Now I have to get ready for my trip to Thailand to the TDEX (Thailand Dive & Travel Expo) only a short trip, I am back in a week. In the next few months I make an announcement in regards to my recent trip to India, so please stay tuned,
I know…my suspense again…
Again, special thanks to all my Guides, Drivers and Hotels who made my journey a save and enjoyable one.
Shroff International Travel: http://www.shrofftravel.com/
India Tourism: http://www. incredibleindia.org/
Rajasthan Tours: http://www.rajasthantouronline.com/
I have also prepared some articles on the Hotels, Food and other special things from my Journey trough Rajasthan, they will be available soon on this blog.
A Journey through awesome colors, from Elephants to Camels in the Thar Desert, to Venice like paintings, its People, food and culture…that is Rajasthan in India.
I have seen colors I thought didn’t exist…
© Gunther Deichmann - Pushkar Rajasthan India
Click on the image and go to the first Gallery from India
If you still see the Bali Images you might have to refresh your Browser to view the new Gallery.
I managed to do it… thanks to Aperture 2 the main editing has been done and I am uploading most of the images in high resolution from my recent trip to India as we speak into my PhotoShelter Archives.
Very soon a Gallery is available with some of the best images from this truly amazing Journey through Rajasthan in India and of course the fantastic Taj Mahal.
The pressure has been on because I am leaving again next week for Thailand, I have been invited by the Organizers and Fins Magazine to give some lectures on Aperture 2 during the TDEX Show, (Thailand Dive & Travel Expo) for the dates on the Aperture 2 seminars click this LINK.
I am looking forward to catch up with old friends again, like Tony Wu, Aye and Mean from Fins, plus I have the opportunity to shoot some more images in Thailand, which I need for my seminars a couple days later.
I know some of you have been waiting to see some more Images from India including the Taj Mahal, so I have prepared prior my next departure “Rajasthan & the Taj Mahal India” Gallery on this Blog. Click this LINK or the image above & check out the small Gallery.
I only selected 30 images at random, a complete Gallery with many more images will be available on my PhotoShelter Gallery very soon, just give me a few more days.
We are also adding a new Category to my main website “India” with 14 very special Images, this one will be up by early next week.
Now enjoy a journey through vivid colors and experience a little bit of Incredible India.
All images are in their original version non of them have been altered or modified in Photoshop, they have been exported to PhotoShelter and to my Blog from direct within Aperture 2 in low and high res. versions.
Adjustments used in Aperture 2: Raw conversion, cropping, straightening, contrast, minor white balance adjustments and of course some sharpening, plus I occasionally adjusted the shadows and highlights using the Highlight and Cold Areas.
However color may vary from one Computer screen to another on the Web, the colors are very rich and at times unbelievable, but then that is Rajasthan, my main reason to go there, it is truly awesome.
Amazing Colors and sacred Rats, the Journey through Rajasthan continuous, it is truly Incredible India.
© Gunther Deichmann - near Bikaner on the road...
brilliant colors everywhere
Once you arrive in the Thar Desert town of Bikaner a trip to Deshnoke should be part of your agenda, here you find the temple of the Gajner Palace. 30 Km from Bikaner, the 600 -year old temple is dedicated to Karni Mata.
It plays host to thousands of rats. The rats are considered sacred and worshipped.
© Gunther Deichmann - near Bikaner on the road...
brilliant colors everywhere
The temple has huge intricately silver gates donated by Maharaja Ganga Singh and of course like with all other Indian Temples before entering you have to remove your shoes.
I have to admit it was a strange feeling once I entered the temple barefoot and saw the Rats running all over the place, every corner and niche was crawling with them.
Temple priests tend to the rats by constantly refilling large bowls of milk and in the heart of the temple, the shrine, there is a huge bowl filled with Prasad (sugar balls). This area is totally overrun with countless rats, someone even told me that these Rats die all young due to Diabetics, been constantly feed with sweets, however I have heard no scientific proof to support this claim.
© Gunther Deichmann - Temple of the Gajner Palace,
It plays host to thousands of rats.
© Gunther Deichmann - Temple of the Gajner Palace,
It plays host to thousands of rats.
It is also highly likely, if not a certainty, that a “holy rat” will run over your feet, if so, it is considered a blessing.
If a white rat is sighted then you are especially spiritually graced. Eating food or drinking water that previously has been sampled by a rat is considered to be a supreme blessing.
I moved around thousand of rats during my visit but unfortunately somehow missed the white one, maybe next time.
Strangely, there has been no recorded incidence of rat borne disease amongst the temple visitors. Could that be a miracle?
On my way out from the Temple I met a very nice local Schoolteacher who gave me some background on the history and the story of Karni Mata.
Karni Mata, born in the 14th century, was an incarnation of Durga, the goddess of power and victory. During her lifetime she performed many miracles.
When one of her clansmen died and she was unable to bring him back to life and she asked Yama, the god of death to bring him back to life. Yama could not because the clansman had already been reincarnated.
Karni Mata made an agreement with Yama that from now on all of her tribes people would be reborn as rats until they could be born back into the clan.
So, there you have it from grey-brown rats to multi color on the way a kaleidoscope of colors and strange things, now I know why they call it Incredible India.
A selection of my favorite images from the trip will be up soon on my Main website and a lot more in my PhotoShelter Archives, but first I have to do some more editing, you just have to stay tuned and watch out for the announcement.