Photographer's Note

This is another sample from the Ganesha parade last Sunday in Paris. It was the 10th celebration in a row of the Ganesha god which occurred in Paris, gathering the Tamul community from Paris mostly originated from Sri Lanka.

It is particularly interesting to be part of such events to me. When I arrived on site yesterday morning, I heard a woman complaining a bit about the mess the event would create but above all about the French people with their camera coming to discover that community. At first, I had a big smile at her when I heard this understanding immediately I was part of the people she was aiming. Then, I was wondering if I should be part of the crowd since it is mostly a religious event. Maybe I was too curious and obtrusive trying to catch some pictures from these people living their religious faith. It’s true I feel a little bit uneasy when I look at some professional photographers pushing some people, blocking the way to get a great close shot. But I went walking with the crowd.

After a moment walking, looking around, smiling at people around me, I felt more comfortable, tried to locate some attracting characters, smiling to kids, etc… When I found something interesting, I showed up my camera trying to feel whether the character was ok to be photographed and I noticed most people were comfortable with that, drawing a shy smile at worst. I even got close to the severe looking leader of the parade I already noticed last year. Obviously, he’s the one who led the songs and the prayers holding his book in front of him. Even that severe looking character showed me a nice smile when I showed him I would like to get a picture of him. I didn’t get a decent picture unfortunately but even though I was pretty happy with the experience.

I felt there were a lot of positive feelings exchanged between I and the people around me. Maybe it’s an artificial way to get to know foreign communities from Paris but I’m glad I can benefit from such opportunities to better know the City I live in. I can hear around me very often that huge Cities like Paris have a dull mood and people tend to ignore each other. Though, I feel that for good willing people, life can become very positive and attracting if we try to catch the rhythm of the City through such events, sharing few words, smiles and laughs with people around us even if it’s for a moment only. I must say this is something I came to understand better thanks to photography.

On this shot, the men are waiting in two row before pulling the Ganesh car with its red and white strips you may recognize in th background.

No cropping, USM applied.

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Photo Information
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Additional Photos by Steven Le Vourc'h (Curioso) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 551 W: 273 N: 1552] (9271)
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