Julian Ray's picture

Buddha's Home

Hasselblad H6D
80mm · f/7.1 · 1/400s · ISO 800
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What an intriguing image Julian.Great work!

Intriguing is the perfect word to describe this place. I first photographed this tree about 20 years ago and what amazes me each time I go back is that the head is still visible. There are many many little "shrines" like this all over here but given how fast the trees grow they tend to be overgrown and swallowed up very quickly. This one seems to almost never change. Thanks Alan for your kind and as always, generous words.

You've done justice to an amazing scene, Julian. I expect no less from you, but that doesn't lessen the achievement.

Those trunks are extraordinary, and the way the colours blend suggests some magical/mystical transformation in front of us. Keep showing us what you see - often we'd miss it if not for you. Maybe not quite so much in this case... ;-)

Yes Chris, this site is one of the more well known in Thailand and each time I go back to it it still manages to captivate me all over. This time I waited until the early morning light was just right and tried to see if I could craft an image that reflected the early morning meditation of that moment.
Thanks as always Chris for you support and keen insight.

The more I look at this the more I love it. A definite stand-out image for me!

It seems that you and I both have the same pull to it. What do you think that attractive force in the image is?
It is a very simple composition and other than the light there really is nothing, photographically, unusual about it.

To me, it seems to be that the image reflects the idea of everything being connected at a very fundamental, all-one level.

The Buddha's colour being so much like the trunks', and the indistinctness of the Buddha's boundaries, and the appearance of the Buddha seeming to emerge from the natural world all contribute to this impression for me.

I guess one could say this image is the visual equivalent of the Zen concept of One.
It is not the tree and it is not the Buddha, it is.

That is hard to answer, and in part the beauty of it. This has an appeal that stretches beyond compositional clichés and what makes it so special.

Perhaps it is the recognizable subject, evoking that peaceful smile while being framed by a chaotic sprawl of limbs, or the quality of the light and toning that invites the viewer in.

I think the viewer could attach so many metaphors to this (as Chris has done), for me that would be the sense of calm in a chaotic world that threatens to engulf and overpower.

No matter the story, the image is exquisite!

In a fundament way Alan I think you said it well. The difficulty in quantifying the image is part of its allure. Thanks for the kind words.