Thursday, January 03, 2008

Is It Sunday? Or Monkday?

Close Race, And They're Going Neck And Neck

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON


I was walking through Chinatown in Singapore when I saw this monk bending over his meal at a food court. I was intrigued by the rolls on his neck but I didn't want to invade his personal space. I took this tight frame with my 125mm lens, which allowed me to zoom in close. It looks as if he's in front of a mirror, but that's actually another monk in front of him.

I particularly like this shot because of the clarity of detail, the visibility of those beautiful Buddhist robes, the sheen of the saffron fabric - and most of all the fact that you cannot see the faces of the two monks. Look carefully at their shaven heads, however, and you'll see a reflection of light on both of them. Some sort of divine blessing, perhaps.

18 comments:

Autumn said...

What a great picture. The composition is so great. I love how you take everyday things and make them into a piece of art... just fantastic.

Corey~living and loving said...

I agree...totally fabulous David. I often shy away from taking photos of strangers. I really need to work on this.
wonderful image.

gs said...

i would like to title it "monk vs monk".lovely picture.the beauty is in the details. wish you a happy new year.

Fletch said...

Ah, the irreverence of the 125mm lens ...

Good composition, though!

Congrats.

Janice Thomson said...

The clarity of your shots is definitely exceptionalDavid.
I'd love to talk to these monks for a few precious days or sit in silent meditation with them - what an experience that would be.

Sometimes Saintly Nick said...

That’s an intriguing photo, David. Kabbalistic and somewhat mystifying, as monks often are.

eric1313 said...

Nothing is impossible, impossible is nothing--head to head, they can accomplish anything!

Spellbound said...

Goodness, everyone is so serious. My first though was about Ron, the bartender at my regular hotel in Denver. He told me that women love his shiny bald head and he uses a special product to keep it glowing. He also had those serious skin rolls on his neck, but I have to admit it didn't occur to me to take his picture. Of course if I had, people would have said, "Who is this fat bald guy?", not "lovely composition".

San said...

A dazzler, David, right down to the crown chakras illuminated by the mall lights. I would say the divine blessing in this case would be for the photographer.

Hammer said...

Great catch.

We have quite a few Buddist temples here in South Texas and the other day I saw 9 monks at a Thai buffet being treated to a free meal by the owners.

I guess it's customary.

Akelamalu said...

Great picture David. I love the monk's robes, one of the beautiful sights of Thailand that I remember, and of course the smiles of the people :0

Neva said...

This is a great shot! Nicely done!

imac said...

Barbers Nightmare.
Tho its a great shot.

dmarks said...

I find it interesting that Singapore has a Chinatown, when the city itself is mostly ethnicially Chinese (sort of like Shanghai having a Chinatown). But, sure enough, it does.

Ornery's Wife said...

I'm glad my hair covers the back of my neck. Don't even want to think of the rolls! :-)
TM

Sandy Kessler said...

saffron such a lovely -captivating fabric-always a favorite. Have a wondrous New Year David

Anonymous said...

Dave,

My first thot was that this was a commentary on the elections here - head to head?!! Well, it's been close but this a.m. the winners have emerged and it's all good!

Carol

Amrita said...

Yes it looks like a mirror relection at first glance. Really good.