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Threads with Kara weaves!

Recently made a few of these tiny videos for Kara weaves! A video posted by Seema Krishnakumar (@seemskk) on Mar 22, 2016 at 3:51am PDT A video posted by Seema Krishnakumar (@seemskk) on Mar 21, 2016 at 12:14pm PDT

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Red checks and floral jackets

The story on Kochin Kavaya, the traditional dress of Anglo Indians of Portugese descent was published in The Hindu – Kochi Metro edition. A longer version of the same appears on the Kochi post. At the suburban alleys of islet Mulavukad, the air still carries the sights and smell of Portugese legacy across the lagoons. Leisurely …

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On looking good!

Lakshmi on an early morning mission to clean up the front yard at the ancestral home! “I dont look good, I’m old!”, She reacted to her first photo on the screen. “Doesn’t matter! I like old people”, I replied. Then a momentary change to shyness over her uncovered chest! Ah, wait…there emerges the confident version …

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Waddling along in Kuttanad!

The story of ducks and duck farmers from Kuttanad published in The Hindu – Sunday magazine today! The write up goes here and the slideshow goes here. In Kuttanad, Kerala’s rice bowl, fields turn gold. Harvesters are abuzz, hurrying to reap the field before the summer rains strike. But as soon as the noises die …

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Sketches from a night fish market!

Half of my night visits to this market had been futile! I mostly returned with dark or blur pictures, often to answer the impatient fisherlady folks that I’m trying again! They almost stopped asking me for prints and I felt dejected. But there’s something that takes you back to this night market – yes, its …

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Aging Kavaya!

I always loved such Indo-Portugese names ending with D’Costa, D’Cunha, Sikkera and many more that sounded very surreal in Kerala landscape. Certain corners of Kochi fills you with such colonial surrealism – the deeper you dig one could hear stories from another time. Litanies of Lanthan batheri must be the most recent event in literature …

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The not so slowly death of Kuttanad

A slightly long piece written for Kochi post. Mithrakkary, my ancestral islet village that once used to wake up to the hoots of early morning water canoes now rattles on vrooming bikes over the maze of bridges and roads. Dasan, a fish vendor on his traditional canoe often falls late these days to his counter …

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Water weed’s own land

Every household closer to the canals in Kuttanad own a private step to the waterbody. There was a time this seemed a luxury to the city dweller in me. Weeds that wade the canals have never been a botheration to my eyes until a few years ago. The realization that the water below the green …

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Faces behind a thousand mud pots!

Published in Kochi Post A few days before the mighty Pongala festival that falls every year during the Malayalam month of Kumbham, the host city of Trivandrum rearranges itself to accommodate all the knick knacks that comes with the festival season. Of the lot, the most visible being the red mud pots that suddenly crop …

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City revisited!

I’m back to my city in the Southern tip of India after a significant three years far away in New York. So many things have changed. The local festival season of Pongala is a great time to roam over the bustling suburbs, to explore the recent trends of my lovely city. As I walked, I …

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Pongala nights

The discovery of Pongala nights occurred very late in my rational-irreligious life after all these years in Trivandrum. But it came with some surprises that I’m beginning to enjoy these nights beyond its religiosity. All these days, women invade the public spaces with so much vigour that other wise seem extremely hostile in all our …

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Before the whitewash!

Two years ago while passing through one of the northern Kerala districts, I had the first glance of a hand painted Sreenivasan. It was one of the most unexpected hand painted mollywood star finds for several reasons. Even when the integrality of Sreenivasan in Mollywood is unquestionable, a hand painted Sreenivasan on a second thought …

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The Jackfruit plucker

Kanakkarayi, the rustic village man stood in the rain after his Onam duty to bring down a bountiful jackfruit from the yard. On one more photo, the happy man separated the fruit and its fibers, otherwise an arduous process.

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A thousand stitches…

A thousand stitches ran across the mounts and valleys of the lazy golden plateau lying under the fingers of tailor Chandran Pillai. His dull tailoring shop brightened up in soon to be departing temple frills hanging above the table. The village men behind me cheered him, ‘ah! she found the handsomest man in the village …

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Mollywood on walls and shutters

First began shooting Mollywood’s hand painted movie stars couple of years ago for fun! But in the last one year fun turned fad, when happen to see more than 4 – 5 big hand painted hoardings being removed to be replaced by huge flex boards right in front of my eyes. First in this series …

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Maluvamma’s goat!

Here’s to the historic women’s bill passed in the upperhouse today! Tribute to one of my favourite characters ‘Pathumma and her goat‘ written in 1959 by Malayalam writer Basheer. “Basheer’s sister Pathumma, who lived in a dilapidated shack a little distance away, would visit the house everyday with her daughter Khadeeja and with them would …

One man, many walls..

If walls and shutters of Kerala could speak their mind, its undisputably this man, Mohanlal. Times are changing, flex boards are fast invading our towns to replace painted faces of our favourite movie stars. Even before you begin to enjoy their imperfections and faded tones, they’ll be gone forever. Before they do, here is an attempt to document the painted …

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Beginning of ‘the end’!

Meeran Talkies is one of the several second town movie theaters that are being closed down in Kerala. Ranging from bad stories to shrinking audience to multi million salaried heroes may counted as reasons. But all that we know for real is, the reel is over! rest shall be carried to another town for re-sale.. Meeran Talkies …

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May is for Mango!

Mangoes and summer vacation are inseparable! There’s a lot of joy and excitment around Mango trees wherever you find them. Girls, boys, mothers, fathers, friends, families – all of them gape and yum over this fruit. They look up, count their numbers and try all that possible to bring them down! Yes, May is for …

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Sea side views!

Onlooking guard, perching boat, praying Jesus, rocky shores.. a relaxed day at the beach with friends!

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The red-yellow bus!

Kerala transport bus aka KSRTC bus gave a hit on my scooter the other day just to remind me of their pictures I had taken earlier! Yes, the hit also triggered me to jot some of my love-hate relation with KSRTC not in any particular order. I’m sure the story is not just mine but …

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The ginger warehouse

At the heart of spice trade in Cochin, there runs an exclusive Ginger export house run by the Gujarathi merchants. A historical piece of building that reminds us of a prosperous era in trade! Local women workers clean, strain and dry ginger at the warehouse for a daily wage of 60 to 75 rupees – …

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Ancestral home

The annual pilgrimage to our ancestral home in Malabar brings back memories of a Kerala 40 years younger! But for how long?

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Gray future

Japanese website that puts an antique weathered effect on images in just one click. Before!

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What the rain did to us!

Kuttanad, rice bowl of Kerala has the distinction of being one of the few places in world where farming is carried out below sea level. Summer rain wretched the full grown paddy fields causing  germinated rice seeds, even before it could be harvested. Some farmers shared their grief, while others angered!

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Fuming city!

On the occassion of annual Pongala festival held in the city of Trivandrum.This gathering of women with their cooking pots make a special ‘pongala offering’ to the goddess Attukalama. This festival won the world guiness award for recording the highest attendance of women, 1.5 million (15 lakhs) in 1997. Ever since the number of attendees have been on …

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Beedi workers

At one of the Dinesh ‘beedi’ (Indian tobacco) co-operatives in northern Kerala. The brand ‘Dinesh beedi’ is probably one of the popular brands in the Indian beedi market! There lies the wrapper leaves which are then rolled and a pinch of tobacco is pushed at the end to finish the beedi making. Women get paid Rs 60/- per …

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Light and shadows in Padmanabhapuram palace

So far, this has been the toughest place to shoot indoors in natural light. Beautiful palace yet lifeless in photographs without proper light + people combination. Here’s my effort to bring both the elements together!

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Mystiques of Malabar

Theyyam and Padayani during the onam festival in my city. Theyyam is vigorously red while Padayani soothes you through green. Both combine dance, music, colours and believes from tribal culture which lately found a place in the main stream.

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Trumpet

As celebrations set off for Onam last year. magical light..tanned bodies..and wonderful sound.