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Weekly Photo Challenge: Green / Travel Theme: Mystical

“Ideas come from everything. “

Alfred Hitchcock

DAYBREAK, THE TEMPLE AT ANGKOR WAT
DAYBREAK, THE TEMPLE AT ANGKOR WAT

This week’s Photo Challenge is GREEN, while Alisa’s Travel Challenge is MYSTICAL.   One might think that those two subjects would be difficult to include in a single post.  But I am here to prove the skeptics wrong 🙂

Not long ago, my husband and I traveled with our friends Jane and Bob to Southeast Asia.  A highlight of the trip, especially for photographers like Jane and me, is a visit to Angkor Wat in Cambodia.  As such, we made it the last stop in our travels, and were looking forward to it immensly.

EVENING LIGHT-THE TEMPLE AT ANGKOR WAT
EVENING LIGHT AT THE REFLECTING POOLS-THE TEMPLE AT ANGKOR WAT

“Theologians may quarrel, but the mystics of the world speak the same language.”

Meister Eckhart

Our first morning in Cambodia, we awoke at 4 am and made our way before dawn to a tethered hot-air balloon ride.  From there we took our first photographs of this magical/mystical place as the sun rose. (My favorite shot – top of the post).  We decided to tour some of the other temples (each more incredible than the last) and return to Angkor Wat for some sunset shots. (Another favorite, just above).

So THIS then, is where we get to the GREEN part.  We returned to set up for sunset at Angkor Wat only to find a bunch of huge, ugly, green construction screens installed all over the front of the temple.  (How huge?? For perspective, try to find the teenie, tiny person dressed in white in the center of the temple’s front steps below.)  Shocked and saddened, we pulled our jaws up off of the ground to ask our guide how long they had been there.  To our amazement, he answered “about two years”.  Interestingly, the green screens had never shown up in any photo we’d seen, nor had they ever been mentioned in guidebooks or by our tour company.  What a surprise – NOT.  

GREEN SCREENS-UGH
GREEN SCREENS-UGH

“Let your soul and spirit fly into the mystic.”

Michael McDonald

So, gathering our wits about us, we applied some creativity, using distance, strategically-placed people, and later some judicious post-processing, to restore the magic of the mystical temple at Angkor Wat.  The ugly green screens were unable to mar its beauty once the initial shock passed.  Amazing photography opportunities are everywhere, both inside and out. Those in the surrounding temples are incredible as well. As a photographer, and/or as a spiritual person, Angkor Wat must be placed high atop the bucket list–green screens or not.

WATER LILY, ANGKOR WAT REFLECTING POND
WATER LILY, ANGKOR WAT REFLECTING POND

Thanks to Ailsa of Where’s My Backpack for her Mystical challenge, which reminded me of what, in hindsight, has become one of the most memorable moments of an incredible experience.

For more on the Weekly Challenge go HERE

NOTE:  All photos taken with Nikon D/300s

  1. Daybreak – Nikkor 18-200mm @40mm, f/11, 1/125, ISO 200
  2. Evening Light – Nikkor 18-200mm @22mm, f/8, 1/640, ISO 200
  3. Green Screens- Nikkor 18-200mm @34mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO 640
  4. Water Lily – Nikkor 18-200mm @200mm, f/5.6, 1/125, ISO 200
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16 thoughts on “Weekly Photo Challenge: Green / Travel Theme: Mystical Leave a comment

  1. Reblogged this on from "curiosita" to.. and commented:
    This is the most beautiful interpretation go Angkor Wat, one of my favorite places in all my travel experiences. Please see the Daybreak picture. I am reblogging this to my blog to share with more readers. Enjoy!

  2. Wow, your daybreak Angkor Wat photo should be appreciated by more people, I have never seen such a beautiful interpretation. can I reblog this to one of my blogs?

  3. Yeap… I was in Angkor Wat in September 2010… maybe at the beginning of the green screens… they’re on my pictures too… I tried my best to shoot from an angle where they’re not so obvious but it’s hard. Fortunately, the sun, the light, the refelctions in the pool in the foreground help forget them. (http://lespetitspasdejuls.wordpress.com/about/asie-juillet-a-novembre/cambodia-the-one-who-had-another-dream-come-true/ and http://lespetitspasdejuls.wordpress.com/2012/10/19/weekly-photo-challenge-silhouette/).
    I’m flabbergasted (yes, yes!!!) by your mystical picture from the hot-air balloon… I wish I had one like that…
    Thanks for sharing once again such an inspiring post.
    Cheers!
    Jul’

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