Village Scenes with Praktica

Discussion in 'Classic Manual Cameras' started by subbarayan_prasanna, Jul 21, 2014.

  1. We made a small tour of the historic Chola Landscape in Tanjavur District. It is on the Delta of the River Kaveri [aka Cauvery]. The Delta was created by an early Chola king Karikala around 2000 years ago. He built a check dam of stone masonry on the river and split it into six dis-tributaries and had dug extensive canals for irrigation of these lands. The Dam is still functional, was restored in 1920s with mechanical control gates. More about this later.

    On our way to view these monuments, great Temples of the Chola Empire, we came across many pretty village scenes. I am posting a few shots here; all the pictures were taken with one of my favorite Praktica Nova 1Bs with the Meyer Oreston 50mm f/1.8 lens and scanned in my old HP 3010 scanner. The film is ORWO UN54 developed in my home brew.

    This village, Pandanallur, is close to the banks of a major dis-tributary called Kollidam [Coleroon in the Latin maps]. Most villages in the Delta are famous for their talented people. Pandanallur was famous for its classical dance school. Most of the famous dance stars of Bharat Natyam camped in this village under primitive conditions and learnt their art, since 1900s till the 1970s. They came from all over the country.

    I would visit the place again and do a more detailed photo essay.

  2. Built with local materials, mud walls and thatch roofs, some use bricks made in off-season local kilns. The change is in the electricity supply and the TV and other gadgets they use. Some, like school teachers and prosperous farmers use computers to get information on farming directions.
  3. I found an esthetic in this ambiance that seemed special. The cattle roam freely here. But, unlike the city bred brats these people don't seem to throw garbage around.
  4. Many farmers have small holdings. So they don't own tractors and farm machinery. These are owned by entrepreneurs or big farmers and loaned to small farmers on ploughing, sowing and harvesting seasons. The younger generation of school graduates seek employment in these mechanized outfits. Thus unskilled farm labour is getting to be in short supply.
  5. Conserving water has become critical. Old time flow irrigation is limited, as the rivers are rain-fed. They are building minor irrigation works, with local storage tanks [for irrigated and drained water] and lined-canals to regulate water flow.
  6. I photographed these in the first week of March 2014. There was plenty of the ubiquitous Winter haze. That added to the atmospherics. Thanks for viewing and your comments. It is a vast subject in a historic landscape. I am starting only with a minute glimpse. sp
  7. Wonderful photo essay. Looking forward to more from your trip.
  8. These were very nice photos and I enjoyed your commentary. I hope to see more from you in the future.
    Kent in SD
  9. Fascinating glimpse of your country, as usual, SP. Those village houses look really cosy, and the surrounding countryside is attractive. Nice tones from the Oreston. Don't be slow with the next installment!
  10. Very pleased to see another photo essay from you.
    You've outdone even yourself with this one, I think.
    The "winter haze" does give a different feel from the tropical sun of many of your urban shots.
  11. As always, SP--excellent! I really enjoy your tours--please let's see more!
  12. Outstanding documentary images - Compared to the now crowded city where I live, there is a sense of harmony to these village scenes.
    Best Regards,
  13. My own experience with a Nova 1B was not very good but I see that good work with the camera is possible. I wish I had your ability to get the old cameras going.
  14. Interesting seeing the utility wires going into thatched roof tops. Thanks for the post.
  15. Great series, SP. I always enjoy your photo tours. I'd say the ORWO UN54/home brew combination has been refined to a science as it looks great. Good sharpness with that Meyer Oreston lens. Thanks for sharing.
  16. Great to see you back and posting here. As others have mentioned it is always nice to see shots from other parts of the world. Great results and can't wait to see more from you. Take care.
  17. Oh, how I have missed seeing your posts SP. Superb work, as always.
  18. Excellent!
  19. Wonderful photos and essay!
  20. Great to see some more shots from you SP, and what a wonderful village you have found. The light looks perfect for B&W photography and the Oreston seems to deliver.
    Just been looking at Cartier-Bressons' book of Indian photographs,...they are fairly good too!
  21. Really great photo essay, thanks for sharing. The mix of timeless hard labor and modernity is fascinating. I wasn't aware of "Winter Haze", so I checked wiki. Interesting, but not in a good way.

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