The major temple site which had recently emerged from the Cambodian forest is the great Preah Khan at Kompong Svay, known locally as Prasat Bakan.
Preah Khan is one of the few monuments to have kept its original name. A millennium celebration at Preah Khan attracted hundreds of locals and vegetation was cleared from the site for the occasion, but it remains a complex very much in its natural state, inundated with trees, scrubs and dense foliage throughout.
Preah Khan was built in 1191 during the reign of King Jayavarman VII. He was a warrior king celebrated for reconstructing the Khmer Empire after a period of fragmentation.
The King commissioned Ta Prohm and Preah Khan temples as monuments of his rule. Preah Khan was probably built on the same spot where previous kings had kept their palaces. Preah Khan was more than just a monastery—it was an entire city enclosing a town of 56 hectares. About 100,000 farmers produced rice to feed about 15,000 monks, teachers, and students. Subsidiary buildings included a hospital, rest house, and rice granary.
As the January afternoon Cambodian sun beat down on us, the ruins of Preah Khan offered no shade....but in the rear part of the complex, there was this 'Lonely Traveller' with excerpts of Lonely Planet enjoying the bit of shade.
Two strangler fig trees had grasped the building into a stranglehold, as you may see in the BG..one of them had been chopped off during restoration process...while the other soars up into the sky. I've cropped off a bit of the top of this picture (the OE sky) and adjusted levels.
Critiques | Translate
ribeiroantonio (22637) 2006-11-14 22:47
It must be a very beautiful temple, preserved by the forest and now re-discovered by their own people. The composition is very good with the man just sitting there and looking at his book. It seams very peaceful. Congratulations.
siolaw (38274) 2006-11-14 23:00
Nice compo showing a westerner's bad habit of being in such a nice spot for such a short time, wasted by reading a guide instead of filling his eyes and soul with these spectacular surroundings!! ;D
Nice greenish tones, difficult light well managed
Have a nice day
james-r (676) 2006-11-14 23:54
:-) Oh, I've been there! And images like this make me want to go back as soon as possible.
I get a feeling of peace from this image, you've captured that sense very well.
partha (14020) 2006-11-15 0:40
Nice supporting note. The background and its colour tone gives the feeling of its age. The inclusion of the person is a nice idea to give tha sensetion of scale.
leo61 (0) 2006-11-15 0:42
Good composition with this interesting temple and the strange tree.When I was there lat year I was always fascinated seeing those root on the ancient architecture.The reading man is perfect placed and you managed the light well.
pablominto (53744) 2006-11-15 1:42
The combination of rain forest and ancient architecture is awesome! The jungle finds its way and will take over in due time unless some intervension is carried out...
Well composed image with good details!
ramesh_lalwani (3211) 2006-11-15 2:20
Ancient temle and ancient tree give lovely colors to this photo.TFS
Graal (96730) 2006-11-15 2:50
another interesting a place with the fragments of the old architecture. Pity that it's only ruins. Good note and your job. I like it.
vinicio (23415) 2006-11-15 2:55
Good and interesting composition and note, I find in this image some digital noise, probably due to the little light and the image resize, hovewer compliments.
papagolf21 (85416) 2006-11-15 3:27
Bonjour, mon ami Angshu,
Ce que j'aime chez vous, c'est que vous avez un talent fou pour nous faire découvrir des endroits extraordinaires.
Ici, le dépaysement est garanti et l'intérêt de cette prise de vue est manifeste.
jasmis (57824) 2006-11-15 3:40
Interesting and exotic place (imo). Fine composition and detailed note. Well done. Regards.
vincz (19113) 2006-11-15 4:12
I remeber this place as if it was yesterday. The place was so pleasant and quiet that we stayed a long time with my daughter doing drawings of the very interesting scultupres. We did not have much sun that day so light was not as strong as the one you got! You were able to do well with the walls and the mosses and restore the very intersting atmosphere of the place.
imrek (4) 2006-11-15 4:17
what a huge tree, very nice composition and the men is very good measure here...a powerfull shot!!! Thanks for sharing!
ChrisJ (96522) 2006-11-15 4:45
Fantastic capture of the ruins of Angkot Wat. I've been there in 2002, & this is an excellent result, considering the harsh tropical sunlight. Tfs!
sabyasachi1212 (19771) 2006-11-15 4:58
This is exactly as I saw this place. I was comparing this pic with the ones I had taken, almost similar angle but not half as good as this. The tourist looking at his guide book is really the key to this picture. We were the only ones around here. I don't know why most tourists restrict their Angkor expeience to Angkor complex, Bayon and maybe Ta Prohm. There are lots of other places to be discovered as well.
The problem here as I realised, in early morning due to thick vegetation around there isn't enough sunlight and by mid-day it is simply too strong. You have done the right thing by cutting off as much of the sky which I guess anyway was OE. Did you consider going B&W with this? I tried one for your ready reference and have mixed feeling about it.
John_F_Kennedy (42062) 2006-11-15 7:08
Very beautiful composition. The presentation is very good. Great idea and good work. Light and colours are excellent. I like how you captured the man in the blue trousers which is a nice contrast to the temple.Achim
pierrefonds (56400) 2006-11-15 7:27
A good POV of this section of Preah Khan and of the lonely person reading, a lot of details can be seen. The photo has a good composition, perspective and nice colors. Thanks for sharing.
Cretense (68687) 2006-11-15 7:40
Great picture from this very impressive monument. Great composition (nice positioning of the man) and beautiful colours. A small problem of definition of the photo, doesn't make less atractive. Congratulations!
clic (14718) 2006-11-15 9:14
A fight opposing gulped down architecture and nature's strenght and finally won by man for the pleasure of tourists!
A mysterious ambiance.
prumod (8300) 2006-11-15 10:31
your composition reached a high level here... the tonality which give some cooling to eyes is really appreciated...
cunejo200 (7281) 2006-11-15 11:07
The Cambodian ruins and temples are perhaps the most desired places for TE members to travel. Beautiful perspective of Prasat Bakan and people who have visited this area is almost always awed. Well framed with many engaging details. TFS and regards. Danilo
plimrn (21344) 2006-11-15 12:21
You captured a nice moment here with the man seemingly meditating or praying - but to the tree and not the temple.
I have this moment that makes me wonder if the heiritage of the fig was mosre valuble than the temple, of course my home is basically a desert country where 15 neighbors call the police over a tree cutting - (someone was pruning a friend's tree while they were out of town to improve their view) As to the WS, I prefer color.
markstaples (15670) 2006-11-15 12:58
The composition is good and the reader is the icing on the cake. He really does seem to be engrossed in this solitary moment. I prefer the colour version too.
josepmarin (57709) 2006-11-15 13:12
Hi, my friend,
Amazing image of the tree that has broken the wall of this temple, which seems that it is going to disappear devoured by the jungle.
The seated man reading it adds a human and daily detail to the composition. The soft light and the colors with gray and green tones it works very well.
emjleclercq (15780) 2006-11-15 17:33
Excellent note again and a strange blue-green color of the moss or vegetation of the temple, which make it look like a turquoise (do not no the Englsih work) semi-precious stone. The roots of the tree deeply anchored in the stone show the vivacity of the vegetation, all the more since part of te tree has been cut. But the roots make like natural pillars mixing with the stone ones. Potential sharpness improvement in my opinion though.
All the best,
Gerrit (47436) 2006-11-15 17:55
fantastic how that enormous tree mingles with the stones and the man just reads about what he can see when he looks up I suppose.
sayan (2617) 2006-11-16 3:37
Dear Angshuman da,
I like the atmosphere here. Though I am not sure about the top part. I think there is some problem with OE and colours. Otherwise I find it as a nice compo and your pov as always is wonderful.
Henryk_Bilor (20799) 2006-11-16 4:34
I like here the colours and details of the ruins and the big roots. So I wouldn`t prefer it in b&w. Impressive. Nice composition with a reading man.
feather (51130) 2006-11-16 5:42
Great shot Angshu. I think you probably made the right decision to crop the sky. Often we become exasperated if we have a tourist blocking our shot, but here he adds an extra element to make this a most successful image.
Budapestman (82620) 2006-11-16 12:11
What an interesting and fascinating place! Details are stunning and very spectacular. Its an impressive POV and very good theme. This is a very peaceful moment and superb observation! Splendid shot, once more!
Thank you, nice days
Stepan (27210) 2006-11-16 12:39
The scale is what I enjoy the most here, with a tiny man in a big nature world. The size of the tree is incredible compared to the temple. Interesting shot.
berek (37248) 2006-11-17 3:46
very interesting tree's root. well framed picture with person. have a nice weekend.
my overall evaluation -> ***
atus (15838) 2006-11-17 5:35
very well captured and nicely framed shot of a fabulous atmosphere. Well managed light, good sharpness and nice colours, The compo with the man is vsry useful because adds vitality and scale to the shot. We can appreciate better the dimensions of the roots and consequently the power of the nature.
Very nice one! Tfs and best wishes.
sayat (2949) 2006-11-17 6:12
Very nice compo Dear Anshu. I like a lot the trees in the background and the light coming throught the upper left corner. Great shot. The colors look a little oversaturated to me.
Kenny10pin (19301) 2006-11-17 15:04
nice shot, I like the shot with the person, very good work, well done
zeca (19762) 2006-11-18 23:19
Another nice shoot from this wonderful temple, with your trademark of saturation and contrast! It´s always nice to see your pictures!
TeresaT (10806) 2006-11-19 9:47
Nice cpature of these ruins with the lonely man reading.
i relly like this strange tree.
The textures and sharpness are perfect.
The desaturated colours are great too.
capthaddock (28790) 2006-11-19 21:00
Hi Angshu - difficult light, but the image is a pleasant one, the way the tree is devouring the ruins is interesting.
pranab (5354) 2006-11-20 3:35
i looked at sabyasachi's ws, it seems ok but in my opinion it could use a bit of darker sepia tone.
anyway, here the color seems so natural. good contrast. placement of the human element off center was a great idea.
devimeuxbe (58557) 2006-11-23 3:00
beautifull picture of this magic place. i have in my galery a similar picture from the same place with a woman. But i took 1 year before and i see that they cuted one of the 2 trees.
What a pity !
have a nice day
arjun_das (1851) 2006-11-23 5:18
excellent capture of the ruined art work. it is very ironical that the man reads book intensely sitting in a surroundings full of destructions. i like the compo and tfs.
zizzer77 (721) 2006-12-08 4:14
your cambodian shoot are fantastic.
this shoot is perfect for this moment of study.
- Copyright: Angshuman Chatterjee (Angshu) (55373)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2006-01-03
- Categories: Architecture, Ruins
- Camera: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ5, Leica DC VARIO-ELMARIT 36 - 432mm
- Exposure: f/3.2, 1/30 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
- Travelogue: Heritage Sites of South East Asia
- Date Submitted: 2006-11-14 22:38