Dancing girls – The story behind

At the moment at the home page of this site this picture is displayed. What is happening there?

Back in 2007 we where traveling in Mali. As you might expect it is a country not easy to visit, it is very different from the world we are living in. There is little to eat and drink but a lot of sand and dust. We stayed some days in Djenné and from there went for a walk in the desert. Far away we saw some houses and dry threes, enough to not get lost for ever.

On our way back we met this group of young women, they got water from town and where on their way to their homes. Even when they carried a heavy load they wanted to have their picture made. The fun and happiness they showed where simply impressive and they exposed a high level of pride and confidence. Basic feelings everybody strives for. What is different is how people are showing such feelings; in the western world people are often hiding their feelings while in remote places people often are much more open even to strangers.

6 thoughts on “Dancing girls – The story behind

  1. Great shot. But behind the image is that wonderful display of smiles and self-confidence. They’re proud of who they are and how they live. They have dignity and integrity.

    We in the western world are so suspicious of strangers taking photos. We, in general, don’t comprehend how a complete stranger might want to make a photo of what seems to us to be ordinary, private moments.

    Perhaps this is the result of modern technology and the insular way we live in western societies. We build a capsule around ourselves, our families and create barriers as we don’t want anyone to perceive us as individuals.

    I live in Melbourne, Australia and most Australians don’t like their photo being taken. It’s almost like some stranger is invading their privacy. The funny part about it is, when on holiday overseas, Australians have no hesitation in photographing the locals (as much as the scenery). They don’t usually ask that person if they may take their photo. They assume it is their right as a tourist to make photos of anyone and everything they see. Seems like double standards exist in my country.

    1. Same here with double standards, when not at home people tend to be more “free”, maybe free is not the right word, maybe it has to do that one feels the right to take (not make) pictures. Why, maybe because the person paid a lot of money, maybe it even is worse and has to do with deeper feelings.

      The challenge is to find the right way, as far as possible always ask, have some interaction and show respect. Sure that seems difficult, to me it seemed very difficult but in Mali I learned this, I found it was getting easier very quickly. At some point it almost became too easy.

      I will try to post some Europeans in the blog soon.

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