I have just visited Russia for the first time in my life. And like many who grew up during the Cold War I had preconceived ideas about the country and its people. Most of those luckily turned out to be wrong. The country is not grey, and the people are very helpful in spite of the language barrier. And of course a lot of things have changed and are still changing since the Soviet Union collapsed. But most people still have to struggle to make ends meet, and this lady selling her home-grown flowers and vegetables in front of the station in Pavlovsk is a typical example of modern Russian free enterprise.
Over the coming weeks I would like to share a few impressions from St. Petersburg and surroundings with you. Not as a travelogue, but as a series of photos that I feel give an impression of the greatness of Russia. And this babutschka is a good start.
Critiques | Translate
Burnham (2428) 2004-05-31 11:10
Hej Per. Very good picture, I like all the shades of grey broken by the flashes of bright red and green her pose is good too, and lucky that you got that old hand aswell. Good work.
jhm (135806) 2004-05-31 12:37
Hi Per, pretty trip in Russia, excellent note, reality picture of life in Russia, very good composition of this wife, thanks for sharing it!
cgrindahl (6113) 2004-05-31 13:06
Your capture and note fit together like hand and glove. This is not the kind of photography I'm normally drawn to but this image caught my attention. Thank you for sharing these images with us.
The busy features of the image are nicely composed. One can tell this isn't a random snapshot, but a thoughtfully composed shot. I note you have a long lens, 10X, and wonder how far away you were when you took this shot. It is a fine, crisp image with nicely saturated colors. Well done.
nwoehnl (122) 2004-05-31 14:56
Welcome back, Per - sounds like you had a very interesting trip. This is a gripping scene with the humble flower-selling old lady in front of the station, captured in good colors. Looking forward to your upcoming pics from Russia.
bertolucci (13356) 2004-05-31 16:03
This is a very fine docushot Per, and it depicts a very sad scene. An old lady suffering from artheritis who shouldn't have to do this to make a living. Very sentivily handled with great colours & sharpnes. I also look forward to your next postings. Great job!
Eagle78 (1925) 2004-05-31 17:59
Hi Per! Hope you had a great time at Russia and that you found your family just great :) About the image: its a lovely street scene, with a good composition and very nice colors...is that sign anouncing the lady´s products or something??!! I don´t understand russian you know??!! ;)) maybe i would have tried to avoid the gate\fence on the lower right. Anyway a very nice scene, i like it..and welcome back :)
Jeppe (18654) 2004-06-02 2:35
Oh Per - you surely a man of the world - a globetrotter ( your map must soon be yellow ;-) Yes - I can relate to your note - and would like to go there my self to see the land and meet the people. I like your photo very much - It show the hard life of common people and the way the cope with it and make the ends meet somehow - looking forward to your next photos.
bfly (5775) 2004-08-23 7:23
hi Per, I do not have close hand info about Russia, but employing a Moldovian nanny for years, I can say low income level (mainly workers) are struggling for living at the moment..not only that most of them lost their jobs, they do not have any social securities left..health sysytem is almost totally privatized, private schools started now, public schools teach poorly (my nanny speaks Moldovian, Russian and Turkish..all learned and/or enhanced in school)...
most of the illegal workers here are at least high school graduates, some even university, doing only odd jobs here like cleaning or baby care...
I can say ones who are here miss Soviet times...
mikhalych (1319) 2004-08-26 6:22
Nice note, good picture of everyday life in Russia. Maybe there's not much photographic value in your shot, but there's certainly a TE value :) Learning about world through photography.
Thanks for sharing.
sn00zie (2384) 2004-08-30 10:04
a really nice picture Per. nice note too.. love the flowers - they look like narcissi's (are they?).. the lady seems to be oblivious to the fact that you're there taking her picture.. i like your caption.. goes very well with your note and picture.. niceeee
iGirl (1223) 2006-02-13 12:51
This shot definitely tells a story. I've never been to Russia, but I've seen many elderly people selling things on the streets of Latvia and Poland. A friend told me that these people have no retirement money because they grew up under the Communist system and thought they would be cared for by the government when they grew old. So those who don't have families to care for them kind of slipped through the cracks between the old and new systems. I thought that was very sad.
- Copyright: Per Hoj (hojper) (2832)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2004-05-16
- Categories: Daily Life
- Camera: Olympus C-740 UZ
- Exposure: f/3.2, 1/800 seconds
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Travelogue: St. Petersburg, Russia, May 2004
- Date Submitted: 2004-05-31 10:35