Archive for friend

Antonymous Indifference

Posted in Banarsi (Portraits) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 11, 2010 by designldg

“The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference.
The opposite of art is not ugliness, it’s indifference.
The opposite of faith is not heresy, it’s indifference.
And the opposite of life is not death, it’s indifference.”
(By Elie Wiesel in Oct. 1986, when he was awarded the Nobel Prize).

I took that picture of Chai Baba where he usualy stands during daytime along the Ganges.
I know him since many years now, he is a well known character of the ghats in Varanasi (Benaras) who appears in several books and movies.
He is a Chai wallah, he makes and sells cups of tea there.
Sometimes we meet by chance at my friend’s restaurant nearby and then we share dinner together.
We talk about many things, he is a nice man and he contributes to what makes the Eternal city so special.
Once we spoke about the indifference of some toward people of his condition and this is the reason why I connected the words by Elie Wiesel to this portrait.

Behind the Scenes

Posted in Banarsi (Portraits) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 23, 2009 by designldg

Behind the Scenes

“Is it your face
that adorns the garden?
Is it your fragrance
that intoxicates this garden?
Is it your spirit
that has made this brook
a river of wine?

Hundreds have looked for you
and died searching
in this garden
where you hide behind the scenes.

But this pain is not for those
who come as lovers.
You are easy to find here.
You are in the breeze
and in this river of wine.”

(Behind the Scenes, a Persian poem by Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Balkhi, known as Jelaluddin Rumi – 1207–1273)

I took this picture of my friend Juliette Sushila last Sunday as we were walking on the ghats along the Ganges in Varanasi (Benaras).
It was one of the last summer days even though it was November.
That day she left for Paris and a kind of winter monsoon came.

Among several things my friend is running charity business with an hospital in the Indian state of Karnataka where she needs support.

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200 000 Celebrity Bites…!!!

Posted in Some of me with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 16, 2009 by designldg

200 000 Celebrity Bites...!!!

Thank you so much for passing by so often. Today your are 200 223 Flickr viewers, 71 057 WordPress viewers, 61 770 Ipernity viewers and many form Facebook to have been visiting my photostreams.

Your precious comments and your kind support are my energy to carry on this work.

I am not the photographer of this picture, it was shot a few decades ago, I was a kid then biting a “Elle” cover magazine with Liz Taylor on it.

It says in French “Liz se fait une beauté à Paris” and “Comment défatiguer votre écolier?” which means in English “Liz comes to prettify herself in Paris” and “How to untire your schoolboy?”

All this is about celebrity bites but for me YOU are the celebrities right now…!!!

Thank you for your words and for reading mine.

Namaste to all of you.

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© All photographs are copyrighted and all rights reserved.
Please do not use any photographs without permission (even for private use).
The use of any work without consent of the artist is PROHIBITED and will lead automatically to consequences.


The Legend

Posted in Chiaroscuro with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 9, 2009 by designldg

The Legend


This is a portrait of Satya Paul who is a living legend.
Satya Paul is considered as one of the greatest figures in the Indian fashion industry.
This self-taught designer is a pioneer since the sixties and his legacy could be compared to the work of Yves Saint Laurent.
His major contributions to design has been of questioning and changing the way to wear and perceive the sari and the salwar kameez by innovating the very form and drape of it.
He is currently supporting and promoting the various crafts of weaving from all over India. 
His name is well-known everywhere in the country and all my Indian friends dream to wear his sarees.
However Mister Satya Paul is the most humble fashion designer that I ever met.
I meet him for a week twice a year as our booths are next to each other during a show.
I am lucky to be able to share a few words with him every morning then and to listen to his wonderful words of wisdom about life.
There is a radiant energy coming from his amazing happiness.

Spreading Happiness

Posted in Poetry in Fabric with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 11, 2009 by designldg

Spreading Happiness


Once again I came back to the upper terrace which is at a few meters from Bivi Razaia Masjid, a small mosque, located in the chawk of Varanasi (Benaras).
Up there I know a Muslim family who works on the dyeing process of the famous silk Banarsi sarees.
In this timeless and magical place, there is an amazing and contagious happiness among everyone and I always leave this opened workshop with a real feeling of contentment.
Maybe this happens because of the colours, colours are everything to me and working all day with colours seems to be the most beautiful job.
People there became my friends, they are in a different world, away from a kind of modernity and they show an absence of artificiality.
They bear a real kindness in everything they do and say which is naturaly the true nature of innocence.
I come there and take pictures at regular times almost every season and I always give them some prints that they enjoy.
The night before I took this picture we met by chance along the Ganges and they invited me for dinner at their place.
They don’t speak English so I have to attempt to speak Urdu and each time it allows me to nelieve that I have been progressing a little.
That day was one of the hotest of the year and after his work this young man wanted to take a shower in order to look clean with a fresh shirt and a nice hair style for a kind of official portrait that he asked me to make.
I started a few shots before, trying to catch that happiness and innocence.
He gave me more as usual with this generous smile like he did last December on another portrait.…

“Rendez-Vous” with Erik

Posted in Chiaroscuro with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 15, 2009 by designldg

"Rendez-Vous" with Erik


This is a portait of my friend Erik Truffaz that I did a few days ago backstage after a concert.
I find difficult to take pictures of someone you know, it has to be faithful to the expressions, physical features and the soul that you have in mind and like most of the musicians Erik is always in motion, he doesn’t have any peculiar expression that I wanted to catch.
Among several shots I selected this one where he looks happy and peaceful like he oftenly is.
The treatment in chiaroscuro reminds Dutch portraits of the 18° and contrasts with the creativity of this jazz trumpeter who infuses so many elements of contemporary music into his compositions.

Erik travels a lot around the world where he gives many concerts and he comes often to Varanasi (Benaras).
His “love story” with the oldest living city in the world produced an album, “Benares” in 2008, my friend Gopal is proudly showing it in his little music store along the Ganges.

These are the links to Erik’s official websites:
and to the cover of “Rendez-vous”:

Dreaming in Gaudy Technicolour

Posted in Chiaroscuro with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 8, 2009 by designldg

Dreaming in Gaudy Technicolour


“No dream is too big for Indians these days.
Everybody is dreaming it, in gaudy technicolour.
At one level it is thrilling, at another, pretty scary”.
(Shobhaa Dé – Superstar India)

This is my friend Sunny Lamba who is a journalist for The Economic Times in India.
He belongs to this new generation which is making modern India, where things are moving fast.
He is a witness of those Indian dreams that he is reporting.
He also knows what’s “hot” in the city, where to listen to the best ghazal concert in the evening for instance.
I took this picture at CP (Connaught Place) which is the heart of New Delhi.