Noticing the Unusual
Chuck Jones advices us to “eschew the ordinary, disdain the commonplace. If you have a single-minded need for something, let it be the unusual, the esoteric, the bizarre, the unexpected“. These words can be interpreted in many different ways and serves as excellent advice when travelling. So often we get stuck on what guidebooks, official pamphlets from the tourist office, or travellers on TripAdvisor have to say about what we should or should not see, no matter how bizarre or unusual, that we miss the beauty of the mundane or ordinary a place has to offer. In many instances during journeys it is the ordinary that becomes the unusual and unexpected.
The rooftops of Bhaktapur is such an example. These are places where water tanks live, laundry dries, plants grow, people come to feed the pigeons or pray, and where odds and ends are kept or discarded.
The carved stones and water spouts of the pokhari or ponds that dot the city still hold the essence and artistic energy of the past, imbuing the present with a sense of nostalgia. Some are well-kept and in use, others are not. Yet, each and every one tells a story.
Known for its exquisitely carved windows, it comes as no surprise that they often frame living still lives in a city where past and present are entangled and impossible to separate.
And then there are the doors and gates . . .
Amazing Jolandi. Such beautiful and contrasting imagery. I think I spied solar panels on one of the rooftops? And the young woman with dog in the window is very evocative. Should be in a competition.
Thank you, Gwen. The most amazing thing is that there are plenty of solar panels to be found in Bhaktapur. It makes a whole lot of sense, especially as the electricity supply is irregular at the best of times.
I love this piece of advice, “eschew the ordinary, disdain the commonplace.” You are right in that it can fit in almost all aspects of life (work, romance, hobbies…), gives you a different and unique perspective. And of course, applied to photography ~ as you’ve done here, is brilliant. Well done!
Thank you, Randall.
What a photographer’s field day! 😀 Great perspective and timely piece of advice for me, as I’m in the middle of the stress of moving! (even if it’s just across town!) I like the symbolism of the rooftops, doors, frames and windows. Just taking the time to see things // focus on objects we normally breeze on by // and so I have to ask, How did you get to see so many rooftops?
I am glad that the post is timely for your move, Lani. May it bring you extra energy and good luck. There are many rooftop restaurants in Bhaktapur . . .
Love looking at the world through your eyes. So many interesting angles and viewpoints.
Gorgeous shots! And still making me nostalgic for that beautiful place…
What I was most struck by was the focus on how things fit together. Most every picture shows some element of structure, bricks, blocks, grillwork, connections between different types of objects to make a whole. This to me is the unwritten focus of this beautiful collage. Thank you
Thank you. It is amazing what one notices when having a closer look at things.