Sunday, September 20, 2009

Quick bits

Men's waiting area at Farah airport, western Afghanistan.

The young son of the Farah provincial governor Rahoul Amin hangs out with Asmatullah--security chief, house manager and part-time nanny.

The tin can they tried to pass off as a plane at Farah Airport. Yes, that is a dirt runway.

Above, men unload a truck full of goods in Jalrez Bazaar, Wardak province. The community began to thrive once again after large influx of American soldiers arrived and began patrolling.

See the New York Times story here.

Jalrez Bazaar. I was literally chasing the light on this assignment. Although this village is doing better, one must pass through areas occupied by Taliban to get to it. So I had to rely on a military convoy that almost didn't come to get me. Thankfully they did, but it was late in the day by the time we arrived at Jalrez Bazaar, and the sun was sinking fast.

Sgt. First Class Donald Coleman consults with some of Jalrez's Afghan Public Protection Force guradians.

Squeezing the last light out of Jalrez Bazaar.

A girl peeks at me from a broken window in Kabul.

Women wait tensely for their names to be called during a World Food Program food distribution on International Peace Day, in Charikar, Parwan province.

Shamsuddin, 10, and Mujahid, 12, shine shoes while a customer waits his turn at Barbur's Gardens, a huge park in Kabul.

A boy flies a makeshift kite, a plastic grocery sack, near his home on Television Mountain, Kabul. Kite-flying is a popular activity for children in Kabul, but some families can't afford kites. So kids improvise.


pohanginapete said...

Particularly love the photos from Jalrez Bazaar, but the photo of the girl in the broken window is astonishing. Apart from the wonderful colours, there's so much going on — the almost-silhouetted person reflected in the grimy window; the girl's hand on the broken glass; her complex expression; the reinforcing rods like cell bars ... I half expect to see her lower her eyes and withdraw into the darkness. A classic.

FWickeham said...

I think I will re-read "the Kite Runner", altho Khaled Hosseini's book "A Thousand Splendid Suns" is more closely represented by your picture of the girl in the window.

Holly said...

Thanks. It is often difficult to take photographs of women or girls, for complex reasons. The situation varies great by location and context. At first the girl in the window shied away from my camera. The male adults around her encouraged her and told her it was okay for me to take the photograph. This was in Kabul, in a place where many photographers have visited.

I have been in other places where the men and boys have literally chased the girls away from my camera, scolding them and me. Women usually don't have the right to decide for themselves if they want to be photographed, unless it is a secret from their families and communities. The conduct of women reflects on the honor of the entire family. I have also asked permission to photograph women from fathers, brothers and husbands. If their families aren't present, women seem much more comfortable with photographs.