I have always had a certain fascination with sari’s, which are one of the most common outfits worn by the women of India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka. Lately, I’ve been catching myself admiring sari’s and realized that I really wanted to do some portraits with an individual in a sari.
For this shoot, I reached out to Guru Talwar, one of the faces behind the Moda Ninja blog. I’ve known Guru for about two years now and I am really glad that we were able to collaborate and create these photo series.
Being that it was the beginning of November when we took these photos, I asked Guru to choose a Sari that could complement the fall foliage. She did not disappoint, bringing a lovely sari made up of yellow, orange and pink hues.
Coincidentally, the day Guru and I chose to do this project was during the Hindu holiday Diwali. Often referred to as the ‘Festival of Lights’, Diwali is one of the major festivals of Hinduism. This festival signifies the victory of light over darkness and the triumph of good over evil.
Diwali also indicates change, the start of something new. In the beginning of the shoot, Guru and I were going for a more traditional and lovely Indian woman, until eventually, we progressed into a more independent and strong female look.
The location I chose for this photoshoot was the abandoned Rail Park, which is located on top of the abandoned Viaduct Tunnel. This park has one of my favorite views of the Philadelphia skyline, it’s always a pleasure to visit.
The Rail Park has recently been funded by the state and will eventually be turned into a public park for Philadelphians. Although I find this to be great news, I am sad that I will no longer be able to see the secretive, overgrown and forgotten version of this space. I think I will go back and photograph/see it before it becomes renovated.
One of goals in photography that I have set for myself is to photograph as many ethnicities and cultures as I possibly can. I have always been interested in cultural anthropology and traditional/ethnic fashion of the world, therefore, I hope to do more of these type of photoshoots in the near future.