The Himba people of Namibia's north-western Kunene region are truly fascinating. Most of them still live a traditional nomadic lifestyle closely linked to their strong culture.
This lady was a senior in a family that at that time was resident in a village a few kilometres from Epupa Falls on the Kunene River.
With this image I attempted to portray her mood and record the ochre colours of her skin and apparel. She was concerned about something and expressing her discontent to other village members. I further tried to partially frame her with the blurred background forms in an attempt to dramatise the colours.
This image was taken fairly early in the morning. Shooting with a 300mm lens I set myself a fair distance back so as not to intrude. From the "outside" I was able to observe and record the activities of a typical village morning without having any influence on it.
I am concerned for the longterm welfare of the Himba people for a number of reasons and urge anyone visiting their areas to respect them and preferably only go accompanied by a capable and sensitive guide.
One interesting thing I learned during this visit was that the Himba do not keep chickens to eat either the flesh or the eggs. Our guide explained that in discussion he had learned that they considered the chickens as their "flowers" that beautify their village. Made a lot of sense considering their nomadic lifestyle and the otherwise dull aridity of their environment.
Critiques | Translate
CliffW (2377) 2005-03-17 21:52
Quite an auspicious first photo on TE. Welcome. Caught with a good pose (her hand placement especially)and great lighting. Fascinating information, I'd just been reading about the Himba recently in NG.
cantorboi (409) 2005-03-17 22:16
This is an incredible shot. Well done, both from a technical standpoint and from a human perspective.
bantonbuju (51813) 2005-03-18 1:05
hi rob, thats a good portrait, and it works very well in horisontal version; very very nice
Albrecht (11281) 2005-03-18 2:49
Wonderful, beautiful portrait. The colour is special. Sharp and a top-picture. Greetings on good luck on TE
verge (1242) 2005-03-18 7:11
Rob, Welcome to TE. this is really a nice and beautiful portrait. very good focus and sharpness. good job.....rgds
summersun (4978) 2005-03-18 12:05
yum she looks like she's covered in chocolate ! soon it's easter ! ;0)
it's a great portrait, I love the colors and the woman's expression. Thanks for sharing.
Paker (2650) 2005-03-19 11:39
thank you for informative note. The image is a little bit too dark... or mabye the colors are simply too saturated but it potrays the typical Himba very well...
WELCOME TO TE and I wait for more of your african shots!
Curioso (9271) 2005-03-29 5:04
Very interesting note and great portrait which illustrats very well your text. I like this testimony from an endangered beautiful people. Very good TE contribution. Welcome to TE !
ducnc (814) 2005-07-25 12:29
Very excellent portrait. This is a Very strange face with me, Thank you.
miscaro (236) 2008-09-04 8:04
Great photo, great album Rob.
samratrayc (438) 2010-04-11 1:10
Very interesting shot. Very informative too. I like the perspective and the angle and aperture u have chosen. The shallow DOF really makes the lady and her expressions stand out.
But i think the image is a wee bit underexposed. Maybe some simple level changes in the PS will do better justice to the light.
- Copyright: Rob Nicholls (nixpix) (116)
- Genre: People
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2003-08-25
- Categories: Daily Life
- Camera: Canon D60, Canon EF 300mm f/2.8 USM IS
- Exposure: f/4, 1/800 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Theme(s): Traditional Costumes of Africa II [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2005-03-17 21:43
- Favorites: 1 [view]