Although I would have preferred to have an islander in the photo, the tourist taking a picture seemed to be planted immovably in place, refusing to budge... like the moai he was shooting. At least, he offers a measure of scale.
Easter Island is a virtual speck 117 square km (45 square miles) in area in the Pacific Ocean covering 165 million square km (64 million square miles). According to modern archaeologists, the island was first inhabited around the year 400 by Polynesians who navigated in a pair of open canoes from Tahiti. Under their chief, Hotu Matu’a, leading them through the uncharted waters, they brought with them their fowl, their religious idols and other memories of their culture on Tahiti. They named the island “Rapa Nui,” as it is still known by the islanders. Then on Easter Sunday in 1722 the Dutch explorer Admiral Jacob Roggeveen came upon the island, abused the inhabitants, and gave the island its present name. The archaeologists also determined that these monolithic rocks, close to a thousand in all, were carved by native artists from hardened volcanic magma during the period from 1250 to 1500, a practice virtually denuding the island of trees (logs presumably had to be used as rollers to transport statues weighing up to 86 tons, with an even more massive one weighing 270 tons that had never left the quarry). According to native lore, "...they walked into place." This has served as a clue for a novel theory that they were moved standing upright. They were never actually lifted off the ground, but rocked back and forth by three teams of people using ropes. Their cross-sections at the base resemble the letter "D" (with the round part facing forward) which would have made it easier to steer them forwards.
The moai most likely represented the souls of the islanders' ancestors, there to oversee their society and to protect them. They all face inward, as seen in this photo. With steady gazes into the horizon, they make haunting figures, silent witnesses to history. No definitive explanation has been given for whence the practice of creating came, or why it was abruptly abandoned. Visitors are now kept 5-10 yards from the statues, lest they damage them. In 2008 a Finnish tourist was fined $17,000 for breaking off an ear as a souvenir.
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papagolf21 (108151) 2014-03-09 12:24
Bonsoir, cher Bulent,
La version large nous plonge dans un lieu extraordinaire par le sujet proposé et la taille des statues. La présence du personne donne l'échelle du site.
Le mystère perdure, aurons-nous un jour une proposition satisfaisante, là, est la question ?
Bravo pour cette réalisation.
boa (7581) 2014-03-09 12:33
a very good and interesting note about Easter Island! Unfortunately i had not enough time to visit this fascination island during my visit to Chile, but hopefully i will return..Very sad to hear about the crazy tourist that damaged a world heritage!!
It is a sharp and clear shot, and the inclusion of a tourist was very good measure of scale, as you say! Nice shot, tfs!
mesutilgim (97222) 2014-03-09 12:34
Paskalya Adalarından güzel bir kare ! Ve de her zaman olduğu gibi verdiğin bilgi notları ile "scientific paper" olmuş bu da.
Selam ve sevgiler
PaulVDV (31949) 2014-03-09 13:43
It's unbelievable what damage people dare to cause to the historical heritage.
I don't remember why I thought so but I was convinced that all Moai statues faced the ocean. In your note, I read that it is just the reverse.
How these statues were moved by the people who carved them will probably always remain a mystery.
Thanks for the picture and the interesting note!
Best regards, Paul
carlo62 (54208) 2014-03-09 15:23
questa foto mi piace molto, soprattutto per l'inserimento della persona, in questo modo le statue sembrano proprio gigantesche.
Una terra incredibile, invidio chi riesce ad andarci.
emka (105648) 2014-03-09 15:51
Hi Bulent, Inspired by your and Craig's photos I also posted today the photo from Easter Island. Most but not all moai face inward. Ahu Akivi is a particular site with seven moaii looking out towards the Pacific Ocean. And other feature is that they exactly face sunset during the Spring Equinox and have their backs to the sunrise during the Autumn Equinox. Your photo is from Ahu Tahai - the group near Hanga Roa, very close to the sea. Excellent presentation.
Warm regrads MAlgo
Corry (4508) 2014-03-09 20:12
Très beau point de vue sur ces magnifiques statues antiques. La présence de la personne permet d'apprécier leur taille. La note est très instructive. Merci du partage.
Nicou (149898) 2014-03-10 8:09
avec la vauge qui va frapper la roche quelle vue sur ces deux staute quel noir et découpage avec le fond bleu deux belles statue sueprbe compo et iamge.
Bravo et amitié
holmertz (58340) 2014-03-10 10:04
This is an excellent composition with very good colours and a beautiful view towards the sea. I don't mind at all that the person in the foreground is a tourist. After all, tourism is by far the main source of income for the islanders. I would much rather see a "genuine" tourist in a photo like this than a group of islanders performing a dance for tourists, for instance.
Didi (60590) 2014-03-10 12:10
Great subject magnificient place
The human presence show us the scale of this wonderful place
Mics (980) 2014-03-11 0:38
Dear Prof. Bulent,
While you were not so lucky to a have a local/islander roam near your subject, photo was still excellently presented...with you getting a better POV away from the statues. :-)
jhm (159006) 2014-03-11 4:10
Thank you very much for your interesting text.
Again proof that long ago were good artists with these images.
Nice depth and perspective with very pleasant colours with the sea in background.
Very well compostion, excellent captured.
Nice done, TFS.
Have a nice day,
Gigidusud (21247) 2014-03-11 15:19
Hello dear Bulent,
A beautiful image of these incredible statues with great framing. Interesting note, these tourists are really unruly!
kisses to the whole family.
mirosu (16273) 2014-03-12 1:54
Even you have not captured an islander but only photographer, you have created an excellent image. The view down to the dark statues with beautiful blue sea water backdrop is outstanding. Your high angle viewpoint is superb and the arrangement with the blue water in BG is perfect. I like this photo, it makes me even hotter to visit at least one of these interesting places in great Pacific Ocean.
Very well done.
limielski (0) 2014-03-14 3:31
These statues impress me. I like this little person (in comparison with statues) standing in the foreground.
All the best, Leszek
Sonata11 (33971) 2014-03-14 21:11
Wow!!! awesome. Just beautiful and wonderfully executed. I like the colors, sharpness and fantastic clarity. Tfs your beautiful work. Best regards and have a great WE, Barbara
Graal (103038) 2014-03-15 9:35
interesting place here and famous sculptures. Interesting informations. Photo is very well done. I like it.
Have a nice evening.
Silvio1953 (151743) 2014-03-15 13:52
Ciao Bulent, lovely composition with fantastic sculptures, wonderful colors, splendid light and excellent clarity, very well done my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio
photoray (13981) 2014-03-15 14:47
Fine panorama of the Rapa Nui statues, almost alien in appearance and extremely huge. And to think they were moved from the quarry to oceanfront by rocking as a possibility is intriguing.
Have a great weekend,
Royaldevon (42615) 2014-03-16 14:22
This is surely one of the most interesting and enigmatic places you could ever visit.
Your photograph shows the stone sculptures in their stoic silence, forever facing their curious visitors.
You are right about the photographer. He was necessary to create the sense of scale.
A fine thirds composition.
My warm regards,
mkamionka (39803) 2014-03-17 6:05
this is a very funny scene, I like very much you have included the photographer as a great scale marker. Fantastic POV, very well done!
macjake (71771) 2014-03-20 22:32
wow, what a JERK!
Can't believe that guy cut off a piece of an ear, just to satisfy his own personal wishes! wow...they should have fined him $50,000.
as for the photo itself, i remember this very clearly.
I stood here with my tripod a few times, especially in the evening - its one of the top places on the Island for sunsets...and it was full of people during that time.
I also remember a 'security' lady just off to the side here with a whistle, blowing it when and if people approached too closely.
love the scale and size variations...well done.
mcmtanyel (28104) 2014-03-23 16:41
İyi Akşamlar Bülent Bey,
The two color layers (earth tones and deep sea blue) of the frame are separated very delicately by the moai. I agree, it would have been more interesting if the person in the frame were a native, but we photographers have to take whatever the moment brings our way. The little bit of breaking surf on the left gives dynamism to the scene.
ChrisJ (117201) 2014-03-25 13:27
Merhaba Murat Bey,
The fg photographer certainly adds scale. Good sharpness and excellent graphism of the enigmatic statues. The floodlights look interesting. Wonder what they look like at night? A wonderful backdrop of shimmering waves and blue sea. Tfs!
jemaflor (102297) 2014-03-26 0:27
interesting statues well framed with this blue sea in the Bg but very good detail with this tiny lonely man, congratulations very well see.
nikkitta (17068) 2014-03-28 19:22
Tourist are everywhere spoling views, breaking ears,seting fires in forbidden places, but we are also one of them
Here he is well used to gave idea ( I haven t ) of how very big the moai are
Good composition using the attractive contrast with the very blue sea
Well done regards
jmdias (68019) 2014-04-08 1:23
even few hours ago I was seeing a photo from Namibia I will post soon and there were a seated sculpture that remembered me these moais and I was thinking about a title, maybe (where moais rest). haha.
very nice row of the idols, I liked the strip of sea and the interesting light, even the tourist is nice here.
worldcitizen (9308) 2014-04-09 15:55
The Moai are always interesting to see, and this view, with the beautiful water behind them, is great. Perhaps they would have enjoyed the ocean view more, but at least they can hear the waves gently breaking behind them. That tourist does show scale very well, and maybe he's a fellow TrekEarth member. It's terrible that someone would actually break off an ear as a souvenir. I like the horizontal layers in this scene, with the water, the statues, and then the collection of stones.
I hope all's well with you and Carol Jean. :-)
ikeharel (77325) 2014-04-15 7:18
Scaled by the young man taking a photo, those special statues of Easter Island prominently stand contrast with the blue sea and the surrounding.
fabulous ancient locatin, nowadays toured - but a mystery that was through long centuries.
Fine shot, well aloocated pic. space.
*** Glad you had recognized the old villa in Ashkelon.
Next time you are in Israel, give me a buzz.
kato (11630) 2014-05-27 22:36
You're capturing well this place by a good angle and excellent tone/clarity, so it's interesting and impressive to see monolithic human figures in Easter Island. It's very beautiful contrast with blue sky. And, a tourist draws out a good impact.
- Copyright: Bulent Atalay (batalay) (40203)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2014-01-13
- Categories: Artwork, Ruins
- Camera: Nikon D200, Nikkor 70-210 f4.5-5.6
- Exposure: f/9.0, 1/350 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2014-03-09 11:46