Water!

Humans continually violate the harmony of nature and, as a result, suffer from lack of natural resources. This constant and resonant plot is embodied in numerous works of art. Mustafah Abdulaziz, American photographer based in Berlin, is undertaking a 15 year long project (2011 to 2026) appropriately named Water. He traveled the world looking for water, researching how different cultures perceive water, its exploitation, and the challenges to preserve our planet’s most vital resource. Today, his body of work covers eight countries on four continents, and is supported by Water Aid, Earth Watch, WWF, VSCO, and the UN.

The image below capture a group of fishermen waiting for their turn to sea. The locale is Sindh Province, Pakistan, 2013.Abdulaziz’s striking images look at the fragility of life but, more importantly, they hold up a mirror to how our individual behavior affects the collective’s quality of life.

The 2 images below is from Sierra Leone. The availability of drinking water in this country is limited. Studies of recent years show that the need for drinking water in urban population of Sierra Leone is satisfied only by some 84%, and rural by only 32%.

India. The population of India is 3.5 times greater than that of US, creating a huge burden on agriculture and natural resources. About 21% of infectious diseases in the country is due to the quality of drinking water, which is significantly lower than any allowable level.Pakistan. Scientists from the UN University believe that the first nuclear conflict on Earth might break out not between Russia and the United States but between Pakistan and India due to lack of drinking water.

Nigeria. The most densely populated country of the African continent risks to enter the top three most populous countries of the world by 2050. Today, more than 60 million Nigerians live without access to drinking water, and more than 100 million lack access to purified water.

Interview with the photographer and more images in Photographer Mustafah Abdulaziz Traveled the World Looking for Waterre.

 

Meet The Photographer: Ruud Van Empel

ruud4Photographer Ruud Van Empel was born in 1958 in the city of Breda, Netherladns. He lives and works in Amsterdam.ruud

He studied art at the Academy of Fine Arts, Saint Joost, Breda, Netherlands from 1976 to 1981. ruud1 ruud2Ruud van Empel is a remarkably multifaceted artist. Before becoming famous for his works in the photographic medium, he has already made a fine career as a decorator and stage designer, graphic designer and film director. ruud3He worked in several TV companies as art director, and in 1993 won Charlotte Kohler Prize for his achievements in television and other media. (Charlotte Köhler Prize is a Dutch incentive award given to young talent (under the age of 35) in visual arts and theatre.  The prizes, €30.000 each, were established in 1988 in honor of the actress Charlotte Köhler and is annually awarded by the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds.)ruud2

Ruud van Empel exhibited his art work — digital photography mostly — to the wide audience, for the first time, in the early 90s.ruud8

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Canadian Cranberry Bogs

Оригинал взят у в Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде

Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде (Richmond, BC)

If you feel like a bit of color in the National Geographic style, move briefly to the New India. New India in the east of Richmond, the suburbs of Vancouver, on the opposite bank of the Fraser River, that is. Here you’ll find  cranberry fields — the red berry sea spilled right under your feet.

Richmond is cranberry central, supplying some 38 per cent of B.C.’s total output to grower co-op Ocean Spray. The province’s 6,500 acres of cranberry bogs put B.C. fourth in Ocean Spray’s North American production, after Wisconsin, Massachusetts and Quebec.

Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде

Cranberry is a bog plant, grown on a dry soil in the lowlands, along irrigation canals. There are two ways to harvest cranberries. The dry method is to pluck berries off the bushes, and a much smarter method — to flood the bushes.Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде

Cranberries have one important feature: they are hollow inside. When put in water, they float rather than drown.Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: ягоды клюквы имеют одно важное свойство — они не тонут.

In mid-October the cranberry harvesting in the Fraser River Valley begins with flooding the field  up to a depth of about half a meter — the water level just above the height of the bushes.Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: В середине октября клюквенные поля в долине реки Фрейзер затапливают на глубину около полуметра — чуть выше уровня кустов.

Next show up the harvesters, up to their waists in the water, equipped  with the threshers. These wheeled machines, called beaters,  work their way around a flooded Richmond cranberry bog.Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: отряды наемной силы проходят по пояс в воде с молотилками и оббивают кусты, чтобы сбить с них ягоды.

Сбор урожай клюквы в Ричмонде: отряды наемной силы проходят по пояс в воде с молотилками и оббивают кусты чтобы сбить с них яходы.

Richmond cranberry harvesters look very colorful. Here’s New India for you.Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: отряды наемной силы проходят по пояс в воде с молотилками и оббивают кусты, чтобы сбить с них ягоды.

Note that workers wear life jackets. Well, as we all know, one can drown even in a glass of water.Обратите внимание, что рабочие одеты в спасательные жилеты — как известно, утонуть можно и в стакане воды — в прошлом году на сборе клюквы в Ричмонде утонул один рабочий.

Last year, one of the Richmond cranberry harvesters actually drowned. It is unknown whether or not he had a life jacket on.Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: сбитые с кустов ягоды лежат сплошным слоем на поверхности воды.

Knocked off the bushes berries float in a thick layer on the surface of the water.Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: сбитые с кустов ягоды лежат сплошным слоем на поверхности воды.

After the beating, more water is pumped in to float the cranberries. Wading workers use plastic booms to gather the fruit, the way fishermen use nets to gather fish.Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: сбитые с кустов ягоды лежат сплошным слоем на поверхности воды. Осталось только их собрать.

Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: рабочие при помощи бонов — плавучих заграждений — отсекают часть ягод и буксируют их наиболее удобному для их подъема берегу.

Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: рабочие при помощи бонов — плавучих заграждений — отсекают часть ягод. По частям они перетягивают все больше и больше ягод к месту погрузки.

Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде: Рабочие по частям они добавляют больше и больше ягод в месте погрузки, также ограниченном боном чтобы ягоды не расплывались.

Mechanical berry pumps are used to fire the fruit into waiting semi-trailer trucks.Грузовик с урожаем клюквы

Unlike the berries harvested using the dry method, cranberries harvested in the bogs are not suitable for long-term storage and should be immediately processed or frozen.Более 90% клюквы в Северной Америке собирается именно таким способом и, в отличие от сухого сбора, ягоды, собранные в болоте, не пригодны к длительному хранению и должны быть сразу обработаны или заморожены.

Over 90% of Northern American cranberries harvested using this method.

And from all the Canadian harvest cranberries 95% falls on the Fraser River Valley in British Columbia – about 17 million kilograms per square 1150 hectares (11.5 km2).

The total area of all the cranberry bogs in North America is only 12 thousand hectares (120 km2)

The plant received its name for the shape of its flowers reminiscent of the long crane necks with long beaks.95% всего канадского урожая клюквы — это около 17 миллионов килограммов — приходится на долину реки Фрейзер в Британской Колумбии.

If not crane than a  heron is seen en flight against a red background.

В английском языке название cranberry растение получило за форму цветов, напоминающую длинную журавлиную шею с длинным же клювом.

Клюква на вкус — кисловата и чем-то напоминает яблоки (я выловил пару жмень из болота). Вообще, это — одна из самых питательных ягод, богатая витамином С, калием и железом, органическими кислотами и антиоксидантами.

When America became independent, US Navy ships carried stashes of cranberries as a source of vitamin C to maintain healthy immune system of ships’ crew. The British, at the time, carried lime fruits aboard.

Одно из специфических свойств клюквы – способность усиливать действие антибиотиков в несколько раз. Она также обладает бактерицидными и противомикробными свойствами. Эти ягоды являются природным аналогом аспирина.

One of the specific properties of cranberries is the ability to enhance manyfold the effect of antibiotics on human bodies.Одно из специфических свойств клюквы – способность усиливать действие антибиотиков в несколько раз. Она также обладает бактерицидными и противомикробными свойствами. Эти ягоды являются природным аналогом аспирина.

Одно из специфических свойств клюквы – способность усиливать действие антибиотиков в несколько раз. Она также обладает бактерицидными и противомикробными свойствами. Эти ягоды являются природным аналогом аспирина.

These berries are a natural analogue of aspirin.

Одно из специфических свойств клюквы – способность усиливать действие антибиотиков в несколько раз. Она также обладает бактерицидными и противомикробными свойствами. Эти ягоды являются природным аналогом аспирина.

The bogs of Richmond yield anywhere from 20,000 to 40,000 pounds of cranberries per acre.Некоторые города Британкой Колумбии отмечают урожай клюквы как, например, Форт Лэнгли где каждый год в выходные Дня Благодарения проходит жрачный фестиваль клюквы.

If you want to see the cranberry harvest in Vancouver, you may do so from mid-October to early November. Times may vary slightly from year to year.  Here are the addresses of several cranberry farms in the area:

  1. 3362 No 7 Rd Richmond, BC V6V 1T3
  2. Maybog Farm, 15411 Cambie Rd Richmond, BC V6V 1T3
  3. Jagbar Farms Ltd, 3011 Nelson Rd Richmond, BC V6W 1G3
  4. B K Ranch Ltd, 21551 Westminster Hwy Richmond, BC V6V 1B3

Most of the material and all the pictures are courtesy of the article  Сбор урожая клюквы в Ричмонде (in Russian.)

Meet The Photographer: Albulena Panduri

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Only Hope

Фотохудожник-Albulena-Panduri-allwelikes.com-3Albulena Panduri, concept artist from Albania, concentrates her art on imparting surrealism on objects that don’t necessarily go together had they been seen from a normal perspective. She takes things a step further away from reality by playing with one’s prospect, expressing different concepts that at times will provoke questions in one’s mind such as “What if I had looked at the world at this angle?” is the creator of an unbelievable world, surreal and full of color.

Just Another Day To Live

Just Another Day To Live

She is the creator of an unbelievable world, surreal and full of color.

Her photos enhance the environment that surrounds the main character, emphasizing how small and insignificant this is in this world it lives in.

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Words Apart

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Walking On A Dream

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The artist thinks that things always look better when you put them in a square. And this adds a certain harmony to the entire series.
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Her photos enhance the environment that surrounds the main character, emphasizing how small and insignificant this is in this world it lives in.
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Albulena doesn’t own a blog, but you can view her portfolio on her personal Deviantart profile, where you can also find simple, unretouched photos, that are just as incredible as the photo-manipulated ones.

Mammoth Hunters

1-Бивень мамонта торчит из земли Photographer Evgenia Arbugaeva‘ s project Mammoth Hunters is a set of fascinating images of the indigenous peoples of Siberia searching for, finding and excavating tonnes of mammoth tusks. I read a Russian article featuring these photographs and was about to retell the story for this post, but found an article in English that pretty much word for word repears the content — Extraction of Mammoth tusks in Siberia.

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May, 1945

This day, May 9th, is celebrated as a 71st Victory Day. On May 1, 1945 the Victory flag has been hoisted at the Reichstag .  On May 2, after fierce fighting, the Soviet Army completely cleared the building. In the coming weeks, thousands of Soviet and allied soldiers signed the walls of the Reichstag.

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The whole world is remembering May 1945. This was not the victory of one nation over another, one country over another. This — hopefully — was a victory of Peace over War. This is a day of remembrance…

Paris May 8, 1945

Paris. May 8, 1945

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London, May 1945

Netherlands, Utrecht, May 8, 1945

Netherlands, Utrecht, May 8, 1945

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Toronto, May 8, 1945

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New York, May 8, 1945

Moscow, May 9, 1945

Moscow, May 9, 1945

A collection of old photographs. Berlin, 1945:

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Louis Gallait And Edwin Olaf

Abdication of Emperor Charles V. The painting shows his sister, Queen Mary of Hungary, wearing white even though she never wore anything but black after her husband's death

Abdication of Emperor Charles V. The painting shows his sister, Queen Mary of Hungary, wearing white even though she never wore anything but black after her husband’s death

Louis Gallait (9 or 10 May 1810 – 20 November 1887) was a Belgian painter whose major accomplishment was a revival of history painting in Belgium. He earned his reputation especially with the large painting of the abdication of King Charles V.

Gallait’s works were esteemed because of their realism, faithfulness of the costumes and color composition. He was also a distinguished portrait painter.

Gallait’s painting The Last Honors paid to Counts Egmont and Horn by the Corporations of the Town of Brussels (1851) was dedicated to the revolution of the Netherlands 1568 – 1648. In 1568, when the Netherlands were still a Spanish province, and the war between Catholics and Protestants raged across Europe, Counts Egmont and Horn, along with William of Orange and Philip Montmorency, organized a protest movement against rampant Inquisition.

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Louis Gallait. Last Honors to the Remains of the Counts Egmont and Horn. (1851)

In 2012, at the request of the Directorate of the Gaasbeek Castle (Dutch: Kasteel Gaasbeek), today a national museum, located in the municipality of Lennik in the province of Flemish Brabant, Belgium, photographer Erwin Olaf Springveld, professionally known as Erwin Olaf, created a homage to Louis Gallait — his own interpretation of the legendary painting.

Erwin Olaf. Last Honors to the Remains of the Counts Egmont and Horn. 2012. Digital print. © Erwin Olaf. © Commissioned by Gaasbeek Castle. © Courtesy Galerie Rabouan Moussion, Paris, France

Erwin Olaf. Last Honors to the Remains of the Counts Egmont and Horn. 2012. Digital print. © Erwin Olaf. © Commissioned by Gaasbeek Castle. © Courtesy Galerie Rabouan Moussion, Paris, France

All photos become fantasy series based on the story of the Gallait’s paintings. Other works of the series:o1Erwin Olaf .“Captain of Brussels Royal Guild of crossbow shooters, Order of St. George”  (2012)o2Erwin Olaf. “Sabine, Countess of Egmont, the widow of Count Egmont. Interpretation” (2012)

Sabine Egmont was the daughter of Count Palatine Johann II von Zimmern and Beatrice of Baden. At 16, she  married  Count Egmont Lamoralya. Their wedding was attended by the King of Spain and Holy Roman Emperor Charles V. The marriage was very happy. On her knees, Sabine  begged the Duke of Alba to spare her husband’s life, but to no avail. After Egmont’s death, all his property was confiscated and until the end of her days Sabine lived in poverty. o3Erwin Olaf. “Spy of Duke of Alba” (2012)o4Erwin Olaf. “Johanna, daughter of Count Egmont. Interpretation” (2012)

Very little is known about Johanna Egmont, other than the fact that she became abbess of a Catholic monastery in Brussels. At the moment of her father’s death Johanna was five years old.o5Erwin Olaf. “Spanish soldiers” (2012)o6Erwin Olaf. “Still life with the heart of Count Egmont. A variation on the theme of Vanitas” (2012)

The real historical figures — Egmont, his wife Sabine, and the hearts of their two sons, who faithfully served the Spanish crown, buried in the Belgian city of Zottegeme. Egmont’s heart was placed in a special shell and placed on Sabine’s grave.

Visit the Place: Kamchatka

k7This is Kamchatka. 

The Kamchatka Peninsula is a 1,250-kilometre-long (780 mi) peninsula in the Russian Far East, with an area of about 270,000 km2 (100,000 sq mi). It lies between the Pacific Ocean to the east and the Sea of Okhotsk to the west. (Wikipedia.)

There are few places in the world that can simultaneously enthrall and disappoint quite like Kamchatka. A fickle temptress, it tends to hide its primal beauty behind a veil of thick clouds and fog.k2But when the skies finally clear and the powdered snouts of several dozen volcanoes appear through the clouds, all else melts away and you understand that you’re in a special place. k8No matter what you went through to get here, no matter how long you’ve spent grounded, it was all worth it. k3

Indeed, Kamchatka is stunning: vast ice covered areas, rearing fire-spitting volcanoes, lush plant life neighboring with desert cinder fields, crystal-clear waters of rivers and lakes.

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The source of the majority of images in this post is ПЕРВОЗДАННАЯ КАМЧАТКА: ТИХИЙ ОКЕАНThe article is in Russian, the narrative is sparse, but the photography is truly sunning. See more:

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Kamchatka Peninsula has the highest concentration of active volcanoes on Earth. Separated by only 180 kilometers (110 miles), Shiveluch, Bezymianny, Tolbachik, and Kizimen were all erupting simultaneously on January 11, 2013. (NASA report.)

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The activity of these four volcanoes was captured during a single orbit by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer on NASA’s Terra satellite. The four false-color (near infrared, red, and green) images above show Shiveluch, Bezymianny, Plotsky-Tolbachik, and Kizimen in detail. Read more here.

Body Beautiful

Dominika-Cuda-05Polish athletes Marta Witecka and Juri Kussmaul demonstrate acroyoga  poses — combination of acrobatics and yoga — in the photoshoot for  the  Project One Year Fund.

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After hours, days, months and years of intense training, how can we  blame these people that even being completely naked look so stunning that their pictures are worthy of being made into wall calendar.

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Gosia Prochownik

These people are the best and most accomplished Polish athletes starring in a candid photoshoot for no other reason but to make money… and spend it to benefit young Polish athletes  younger  than 18 years old.

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Sprinter Edyta Litwiniuk

Photographer Dominika Cuda initiated  the Project One Year Fund to give young athletes of Poland the opportunity to make their first steps towards success.

“Sport and sportsmanship sculpt our bodies. The way we look, the condition of our bodies says more about us than we might imagine. Our body is a map of our experiences. It describes our lives , our passions, where we go and what we want to achieve,” says Dominika.

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Marek Gunia

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Very commendable undertaking, undoubtedly so. Sport is very costly these days — equipment, training, sporting venues, competitions — not everyone who wants to participate can do it, regardless of abilities, for such mundane reasons as lack of money. It affects young people especially, and in sports one has to start young to achieve success.

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Olga Chmielewska

Dominika Cuda’s photographs are stunning. The bodies are beautiful.  Why the  athletes pose naked, for no sport requires absence of closing?  To entice people to buy the calendar, of course. Such are the times. Nudity sells. Was it ever different?

Happy New Year!