...why the title God's children. I think it is a combination of the extreme bright lighting and the location this was taken at. Somewhere on the Niger River two days cruising from Mopti headed towards Timbuktu. These children live on an island in the middle of nowhwere and have nothing except their families and God to watch after them. A most unimpressive photo for most, I know, but a memory I have that will last a lifetime.
...and I must also say that cruising a piroque up the Niger River is, almost definitely, the greatest travel experience I have ever been graced with.
...and yes, I'm back. Six months of travelling through the Middle East and Africa and 18,000 photos later...I've been looking at your photos (Dennis, Jorge, Peter, Bulent, Luca, Jean Paul, Jom, Tina, Ally, Andre and Daisy to name a few) but haven't had good enough connections or screens to honestly critique them. I've seen some amazing sights and have seen the worst of the worst in this world and have come back with a renewed realization that money means nothing. The poorer the people, the nicer the people. Poor means nothing to these children. The word does not exist to them. They are happy with what they have and want for very little...maybe just an empty coke bottle every once in a while. Happiness and wealth are not dependent on each other and actually have nothing to do with each other.
So, over the next few months I'll be downloading shots from Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Burkino Faso, Mali and Senegal. Lots of portraits as I have become very keen to "closeup" shots (...thanks Annie) with some landscapes, people in their environment shots and all other types of photos in between.
PS - I think I've forgotten some of my post processing skills over the last couple months so forgive me my shortmindedness...and bear with me.
Hope you like them.
Critiques | Translate
japiey (10163) 2008-03-28 10:17
Yes, your title is perfect..
The shot is fascinating !!
A GEM !!
All the best, dear friend.
Happy to see you back..
InasiaJones (31498) 2008-03-28 10:24
I'm happy to see you back in one piece. I just can imagine how "affected" you must be after a 6 months trip. I envy and respect you a lot; this must be the thrill of a lifetime. You've been to fascinating countries.
But I'm sure you are excited at the idea of having a good Philly Cheesesteak...
Funny to see this little bunch of kids, "undisciplinely" taking the pose for you, with one of them all dressed up.Maybe you have allowed a lot of space for water, that have no textures, no features. Maybe a tighter framing would have put more emphasis on kids.
I'm enthusiastic to see your work and read your stories.
TopGeo (38204) 2008-03-28 11:17
Hi John! I believe that these your pictures have the recording of reality and for this were careful with interest your gallery that enough I liked. I liked and what you marked and the picture also. Good presence and my praises
janneman (2590) 2008-03-28 11:36
The extrem light as you mention in the note to the photo is wonderful! And so arfe the smiling children.
You've chosen just the right title.
Hope you will post more of these!
Dorota (734) 2008-03-28 13:36
Beautiful composition with smiling kids.Looks very nice with white background.It must have been very interesting holiday and kind of life lesson.
velocista (897) 2008-03-28 14:21
olá, a great portrait! this photo make me think why, here, in the ocident we have everything and we still feel sad or not happy while these children, like you said, live in the middle of nowhere with nothing more than thenselfs and they look quite happy. this should be a lesson for us!! congratulations and TFS!!! pedro almeida
pboehringer (770) 2008-03-28 22:53
WELCOME back, and Lily too! I can't imagine all what you went through. Tons of experiences, learnings, unforgettable moments ... just the little what you already wrote in this note gives a feeling of depth that you got through. I wonder what it must be coming back to this so american world, plunged in the middle of a recession and with a wild and dirty election year.
But let's not forget to look at the post too! Difficult to say much more than a WOW! The composition is perfecto! The portrait of this little god's children are humbling. Not wearing a lot and standing in the middle of the water (clean, dirty?) and yet presenting a radiance as if they have everything they need to conquer this world.
I'm quite curious to see the gems that you brought home and read your stories.
Welcome back home, John!
Bruno40 (6658) 2008-03-28 22:54
Welcome back!. did you have a good sherpa? :-)
I have been in and out of TE due to overwork at office and home (baby very demanding).
I am really happy to see your first photo, very happy kids, nice mood.
I wont be too harsh on your first one, but I think the water is oe.. but you are forgiven... just happy to see you back. However, my wife says he loves the oe water.
18,000?! .. wow.. you will keep me busy!!
dareco (17134) 2008-03-29 2:59
Hey!! Great to see you back! A very interesting note. I look forward to seeing your pictures. This is a beauty!! I have added it to my childrens theme. The expressions are wonderful, and it shows such a special closeness and love between them. TFS
albertopiubello (2623) 2008-03-29 3:27
Great! I like the meaning and the compositition in the full spirit of TE. These children seem to live in a nowhere place...but they smile...
Very very good and after so long time I can put another photo in my favorites.
Have a nice day
avene (12675) 2008-03-29 4:54
hello John, and welcome back!
6 months of traveling sounds like an adventure of a lifetime, I'm glad you had a chance to experience that. captivating photo to start the tales of your adventures, I actually like a lot the overexposed bacground, it makes me think of soft clouds and heavenly light, and that in turn fits well with your note. very nice work.
looking forward to your next posts,
xuaxo (6846) 2008-03-29 10:04
That's a strong photo, John. Amazing shot.
The poorer the people, the nicer the people.
You are right. I've got the same feeling, from the poorer areas of Cape Verde to the richest spots of Europe.
lopshang (724) 2008-03-30 4:12
What a great shot. Those white bg are looking amazing over the colored objects. The picture is very revealing and sharp. Colors are great too.
scalerman (26900) 2008-03-30 11:18
john: the over-exposed water here lends an absolute surrealistic air to this fine piece. Full green. best, c
patdeph (35748) 2008-03-30 11:42
what a nice photo!Some can think that the background is overexposed,but I only think that the contrast with the black skins is wonderful!That creates an unreal atmosphere like if they were emerging from nowhere,it's very stange!I like their faces,their smiles,the place they have in the compo!Superb!I think it must be difficult for you to come back in this world after a so long trip,I discover you today and look forward to see your next pictures!
Have a nice evening.
edytungkal (4551) 2008-03-30 19:52
Great welcome back picture, i always love to see the children's expression and you have a nice portrait with beautiful colours. A little bit strange with the white bg but i like this picture alot. Hope to see more from those exotic countries...thanks for this shot.
ktanska (24900) 2008-03-31 1:25
Great pose of these kids bathing on the river. It's interesting to compare their different attitudes. High key white background works really well, it's good that some water is visible on the shadow part.
Dpbours (222) 2008-03-31 3:10
Good to see you're back! Good note and we'll get you back on the post processing track. There are worse things to forget, like for example how fortunate we are here in the West.
I'm not entirely convinced with this photograph. Not because I don't like children - I do. Not because I might think it's an easy kids' shot - it isn't. It's quite difficult. As you mention in your next posting, very hard to isolate kids over there since they always come in packs hahaha. (Though adding it to a theme called 'adorable kids' doesn't really help to not see it as an adorable kids shot hahaha).
I feel the over-exposed background works well here, though it is taken just a bit too far. The sun on their heads should not have resulted in white blodges on their foreheads. That's basically what is wrong here to me.
But it's great to hear how you enjoyed your trip! I know, it's an eye opener. Looking forward to hear from you how it might impact choices you'll make with respect to the future. Send me an email if you find the time!!
Good you're back!!
BennyV (13846) 2008-03-31 13:03
A great shot, John. The white light is magic, but even more so are the smiles on the faces of these kids. I fully agree with the ideas in your note and I'm looking forward to your pictures.
woladorsky (806) 2008-05-16 3:18
AMAZING PICTURE!!! ARE YOU BACK OR STILL OFF THE BEATEN TRACK?
i AM IN Maputo Mocambique, have been away from TE but will come again in a near future!!
arturo (31) 2008-07-09 13:27
this is simply a TOP scene placed against that milky background...cheers, arturo
savask (1891) 2008-07-30 10:26
amazing picture. Original faces, clarity and photo-realism
cam (9041) 2009-01-16 19:15
Apt title John
I like this image, as all the clutter disappear, leaving the essential behind, life and the future of mankind children, being kids.
I do not think that there is too much white, well balanced to me.
Wow, 6 months on the road, I can only dream about that, for now.
have fun going through all your photos and reliving all those souvenirs.
leo61 (0) 2010-12-28 11:15
Mali is very high on my list and the white here is much better than the loads of snow we have here.A fantastic group portrait and fantastic contrast with the overexposed background.
- Copyright: John Paskey (happypoppeye) (4817)
- Genre: People
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2008-03-05
- Categories: Daily Life
- Camera: Nikon D40X, Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 G ED AF-S VR, ISO 200
- Exposure: f/5.0, 1/160 seconds
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Theme(s): Adorable Kids [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2008-03-28 10:10
- Favorites: 2 [view]