For the past few hours, my mind has been traveling back in time to a moment when I had felt a connection taking place like never before. It was so surreal that it could not have taken place anywhere else under any circumstances at all. So I went to search for the photograph, untouched and unedited, in my hard disk because it was blurry but still holds such great personal meaning to me. When I first reviewed it a few months ago and realised that the photograph was not usable by today's sharp and crisp standards, I was devastated. So I chucked the photograph away trying not to think about it but that did not stop from reeling me back to it today. Something about the experience behind the camera on this day made me realised how much I cherish this photograph despite of its imperfections.
I was with Mangata at the roof top of an isolated temple in Bagan, Myanmar, when she decided to sit down on the steps leading to the Buddha statue at the back. Noticing the potential for a great photograph, I asked her if I could take a photo of her to which she politely obliged with. But after a few shots, I was still unsatisfied with what I had got. Something was just crucially missing in the photographs. But then it happened, so magical and so unexpected. Her cheery demeanour changed completely 180 degrees as she suddenly leaned her head against the wall and started to daze away.
The camera was held up to my eye when I saw what had happened through my viewfinder and I could not believed it. Just when I thought a connection was missing, she suddenly dropped her strong front and simply showed her true self.
I was in such disbelief that I had to raise my eyes over my camera to see it for myself. Unintentionally, this photograph was shot, blurry from the movement but yet so beautiful in its own ways.
The experience was so profound and significant to me because of how she had allowed me into her life simply by showing her true self. It was the language of vulnerability that her eyes had spoke with, the language that helped me understand her entire existence without the need for any words.