Photoessay: Monochrome vignettes from Shwedagon Pagoda with the Leica M Typ 240

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Perhaps the most famous landmark in Burma, Shwedagon Pagoda has been a focal point for life in Yangon for a very long time – it has reputedly existed in some form or other for the last 2,600 years. It reached its current height of approximately 114m in the late 1700s after the most recent rebuilding as a result of multiple earthquakes. It is thought of as the most sacred location for Buddhists in Burma, with the relics of multiple past Buddhas housed within: the staff of Kakusandha, the water filter of Koṇāgamana, a piece of the robe of Kassapa and eight strands of hair from Gautama – the one traditionally thought of as Buddha. An exact replica exists in Naypyidaw (the new capital of Burma).

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Photoessay: The streets of Yangon, part two: the city

In a continuation from the previous photoessay, part two covers a few vignettes of the various urban scenes I encountered in Yangon – again captured with the Ricoh GR1v on Ilford Delta 100, and scanned with the Nikon D800E and 60/2.8 G. Enjoy! MT

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Photoessay: The streets of Yangon, part one: people

For all of the camera-shy people in Yangon, there were plenty of others who were quite happy to be photographed, or were more amused to see me use a little black buzzy point and shoot that clearly still wound film instead of showed something on the back of a screen. I didn’t mind, because the GR1v is a superior photographic tool for this kind of thing – leave it in P, frame up, check the focus distance – or use snap hyperfocal mode – and off you go. Shot on Ilford Delta 100, processed in DDX and scanned with a Nikon D800E and macro lens. Enjoy! MT

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