Earning their Living
Making pictures of people hard at work earning their living is a favourite pastime of mine. The fishermen on the Mekong River in South East Asia have a hard life. They wake up before dawn and sail their wooden boats to the best fishing spots, hoping to catch enough fish to feed their families and sell at the market. They brave the heat, the rain, the wind and the waves, sometimes risking their lives in the turbulent waters. They use traditional methods of fishing, such as nets, traps and spears, that have been passed down for generations. They are proud of their skills and their culture, but they also face many challenges and uncertainties.
I have been fascinated by these fishermen ever since I visited Cambodia a few years ago. I was amazed by their resilience, their courage and their joy. I wanted to capture their stories and their emotions in my photographs. I wanted to show the beauty and the hardship of their daily lives. I wanted to honour their dignity and their spirit.
That's why I decided to embark on a project to document the fishermen of the Mekong River. I travelled along the river for several months, visiting different villages and communities in Cambodia. I met many wonderful people who welcomed me into their homes and shared their stories with me. I learned about their history, their traditions, their hopes and their fears. I witnessed their struggles and their celebrations. I became friends with some of them and kept in touch after I left.
I took hundreds of photographs during my journey, trying to capture the essence of each person and each moment. I used a variety of techniques and styles, depending on the situation and the mood. Sometimes I used a wide-angle lens to show the landscape and the environment. Sometimes I used a telephoto lens to zoom in on the details and the expressions. I used natural light to create softness and warmth.
I am very proud of the result of my project. I think it is a unique and authentic portrayal of the fishermen of the Mekong River. It is a tribute to their strength, their wisdom and their humanity. It is also a reflection of my own passion, my own curiosity and my own creativity.
I hope you enjoy looking at my photographs as much as I enjoyed taking them. I hope they inspire you to learn more about these amazing people and their culture. I hope they make you appreciate the beauty and the diversity of our world.