Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Falling Man- An article by Tom Jonod

The Falling Man- An article by Tom Jonod

I came across this article a few days back and found it very interesting. Centered around one picture ‘The Falling Man’ taken by a photographer (Richard Drew), this article talks about the different perspectives and reactions of people viewing one incident, or shocking event in history. In this case about September 11.

It highlights questions about ethics, the power of media and the impacts it has, the beliefs we have, what we choose to believe and when, and more.

Well written and thought-provoking.

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‘It Felt Like A Kiss’ by Adam Curtis

http://vimeo.com/22589118

Here’s a documentary made by Adam Curtis. Using just images and archive footage, he has captured America’s political situation in the late 1950s, and what reactions and emotions it brought out in the rest of the world.

Powerful and well made.

“I decided to make a film about something that has always fascinated me – how power really works in the world. To show that power is exercised not just through politics and diplomacy – but flows through our feelings and emotions, and shapes the way we think of ourselves and the world.”
– Adam Curtis


The World is Where We Live by WWF

In the midst of college, deadlines, and researching various things online, came across this lovely short clip a friend shared on Facebook.

Very interesting and done well.
Watch!


College begins!

Three days up, and the upcoming semester already looks full.

College actually begins the coming Monday, but we’ve come in a week earlier for a credit course. We’re learning to use Pro Tools- a sound editing and recording software, and tomorrow is our last day. I’m not really a technology savvy person, and this is the first time I’ve felt so challenged with a computer software. Sometimes, I find the most basic and obvious things tricky or, I just don’t bother to look properly before I freak out and ask for help!

This year, I’ll be doing Communication Studies. Last year, Psychology and English Literature were part of the combination, but I’ll be dropping these two subjects this year. The syllabus looks interesting, and I’m looking forward to this semester!

We have a section on the ‘Perspectives on Art’ where we’ll be learning about dance, music (Indian Classical forms of both) and art (Western and Indian). We’ll also be touching upon theater for a bit. Here, we’ll mainly be learning about how to assess a performance or piece, and write about it. My knowledge in these fields aren’t that great, but I have been exposed to them and practiced them at some points in my life. Certainly looking forward to these sessions. We’ll also be going to performances and institutions where these arts are being practiced!

We will also study and discuss the major turning points in the history of India as part of another section. We’ll discuss how things today came to be way the way they are because of past events, whether it’s got to do with region, religion, identities etc.

Finally, something I’m really looking forward the part where we’ll be reading a lot of Indian literature! We’ll be reading a lot, and before college starts, we have to read a book (one of the Many books we have to read) called Karukku, which is an autobiography by a Tamil Dalit woman. Here is an introduction about the book by the translator. I’ve read three chapters and it’s simple and well written, but quite hard-hitting at parts.

Apart from this, there’s a lot more to look forward to in college this year, and even outside college I guess!


Babycakes – A short story by Neil Gaiman

Here’s a short story a friend shared with me around a month back.
I just stumbled upon it again, and thought I’d share it.
When I read it first, I was quite disturbed. No doubt though, that he’s a brilliant writer.

Babycakes

A few years back all the animals went away.

We woke up one morning, and they just weren’t there anymore.  They didn’t even leave us a note, or say goodbye.  We never figured out quite where they’d gone.

We missed them.

Some of us thought that the world had ended, but it hadn’t.  There just weren’t any more animals.  No cats or rabbits, no dogs or whales, no fish in the seas, no birds in the skies.

We were all alone.

We didn’t know what to do.

We wandered around lost, for a time, and then someone pointed out that just because we didn’t have animals anymore, that was no reason to change our lives.  No reason to change our diets or to cease testing products that might cause us harm.

After all, there were still babies.

Babies can’t talk.  They can hardly move.  A baby is not a rational, thinking creature.

We made babies.

And we used them.

Some of them we ate.  Baby flesh is tender and succulent.

We flayed their skin and decorated ourselves in it.  Baby leather is soft and comfortable.

Some of them we tested.

We taped open their eyes, dripped detergents and shampoos in, a drop at a time.

We scarred them and scalded them.  We burnt them.  We clamped them and planted electrodes into their brains.  We grafted, and we froze, and we irradiated.

The babies breathed our smoke, and the babies’ veins flowed with our medicines and drugs, until they stopped breathing or until their blood ceased to flow.

It was hard, of course, but it was necessary.

No one could deny that.

With the animals gone, what else could we do?

Some people complained, of course.  But then, they always do.

And everything went back to normal.

Only…

Yesterday, all the babies were gone.

We don’t know where they went.  We didn’t even see them go.

We don’t know what we’re going to do without them.

But we’ll think of something.  Humans are smart.  It’s what makes us superior to the animals and the babies.

We’ll figure something out.

By Neil Gaiman


Swarathma’s ‘Topiwalleh’

This post has been collecting dust in my draft box.

Almost a week back, Swarathma, an Indian folk-rock band performed in Bangalore, and it was a brilliant brilliant show! I always try to catch their shows in the city. The music, the energy, the lyrics, and the sounds are always so lively! I usually never listen to Hindi songs, and don’t listen to Kannada songs either (the language in which this band sings), but somehow I’ve taken a deep liking to the songs they sing. I’m not very good at Hindi, and neither in Kannada, but the feelings the songs evoke are many.
Right now, Swarathma is launching their second album ‘Topiwalleh’ and they’re doing a tour around India, and they’re half way through. Tomorrow they play in Mysore!

Vasu Dixit, Swarathma

The first time I ever listened to Swarathma was about two years back at the Hard Rock cafe here in Bangalore, and I was mind-blown by their energy and performance. I hadn’t even heard a recording of any of their songs before that, and I had no clue what that evening had in store for me. After watching the six of them play live, listening to their songs on Youtube, or on the computer was nothing like listening live, clapping and moving and jumping to their music, right there with them.

Pavan Kumar on percussion, Swarathma

However, some of their songs I listen to over and over.
Here are a few songs with good recordings on Youtube:
Pyaasi:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gCii9Pmjxho
Duur Kinarahttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hR9H5iZ-l1I

Here’s a site with some of their other songs.
Here, I’d recommend: Pyaar ka rang, Sur mera, Patte Saare and Ee Bhoomi.
http://www.in.com/music/swarathma/songs-52957.html

Oh, and I almost forgot. My next article was about their concert in Bangalore.
Click here to read my article and get a sense of what their concert was like!

Enjoy!



When children’s drawings become paintings

My mom showed me this yesterday, and I thought it to be extremely interesting!

Here, the artist began with a question “What would a child’s drawing look like if it were painted realistically?”

Take a look here: When children’s drawings become paintings


Faces

Here I am again writing my second post after a two days break.

I wanted to write about this yesterday, but time didn’t allow it.

Yesterday, I spent more than half the day helping shoot a film for an eye hospital (just camera work). No. It wasn’t a happy or fun shoot, but a rather sad and depressing one. I wonder now, how I was able to stomach the whole thing.

Here are a few big words, but don’t let that stop you from reading on.

Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is an eye disorder that affects mainly premature babies (those born before 36 weeks and who are of low weight). If the disorder isn’t treated at this stage, the child can suffer from partial blindness, or have a lifelong visual impairment or, go completely blind. At this stage of development, the baby’s eyes aren’t fully formed, and due to the lack of certain nutrients, abnormal and fragile blood vessels, ROP may develop.
In order for sufficient treatment to take place, the babies’ eyes have to be screened every few weeks to see how their eyes are developing and if there are any symptoms of ROP.

So what the eye hospital I coordinated with does, is this: They carry around the portable equipment needed to detect these symptoms to hospitals that can’t afford these special machines. The equipment is linked with a special software that transfers all the information on to a site which then can be accessed by eye doctors anywhere. This way, the machine can travel to remote places, and information is transferred and stored for the future, being accessible anywhere.

The film is being made to make people aware of this disorder, but more for the doctors concerned. It aims to show the whole process of one baby being screened. There were 3 other doctors with me and ward was full with baby in incubators. I’ve never been to a hospital a few times, but never been into a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Rooms were filled with such small babies, some crying, some sleeping, and some looking so terribly sick, so fragile. Machines were beeping and nurses were constantly on the move. Thinking of it, it’s all a haze, but they way I felt while I was in there, I can still recollect quite strongly.

Filming the process of one baby’s eyes being screened- how did I manage it? I guess I had partly prepared myself for it, and while I was there, I focused on what I needed to do, and that was it. What was happening in my head, what I felt- that, I did not express then, or pay much attention to. Once we left the place, I thought about it, and watched how I felt. As time went by, it became harder and harder for me to think about those babies, their small thin bodies, their cries.

In another light, there is actually so much positiveness. Advancing equipment is available, more premature babies are surviving, and facilities are getting better.

However, for some reason after all this, I can still remember the faces of the babies clearly. And they haven’t gone away yet.


The beginning

So. Here I am. Finally. Sitting. Now, staring at the screen stupidly.
Why am I writing?

I’ve wanted to start a blog for a about a week now. Why keep a blog and not a diary? Well, I’ve done that, and now I want to do something new. It’s quite exciting if you think about it. Firstly, everything I say here is public. The audience is everybody, but at the same time it’s nobody. Wait. Does that make sense? Yes, it does. I’m writing to everyone, but I don’t know who’s reading, so you’re still a nobody to me.

Nobody: Please change the topic? You really aren’t making sense.

Right. So I was saying. Why am I writing?
Well, over the last few days I’ve been thinking and reading up a lot, thanks to my summer internship. By the end of the day, my mind’s filled with random pieces of information, images, incidents, feelings and thoughts. I needed a place to put all that down. And here I am, doing that.

Not only am I going to write, and make you sit there and read, anything interesting I find, and wish to share, I’ll do that here. Photos, music, videos, poems, stories. The list goes on.
And I can already see it. I’m going to enjoy this.

With that note, I type the last few words for the day.


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