Bali is growing fast, trying to compete with the western world with its booming tourist industry. Hotels and home stays are on the rise, fancy restaurants and bars are being built rapidly but despite the heavy work load, the Indonesian people are extremely resilient, they work in conditions we could not even comprehend, they have very minimal work place regulations in construction, I am not sure if I have witnessed a single engineer inspecting of the giant concrete structures being built by a mass of family members from as old as your grandma to you’re 4 year old nephew.
I woke early, I couldn’t sleep, my heavy eyes focused on my watch face to tell me the time was roughly 6am, the morning light was hitting the dusty glass windows. I got up slowly to not wake her as I moved out onto the balcony, to enjoy the photography game I love so much. I stood and observed as people prayed to the Hindu Gods, lighting incense while laying material offerings on intricate structures they had built atop their small housing and below on their doorsteps, blessing them with holy water. When I first smelt the smoke I thought of the bushfires from the outback, but the mass of smoke was actually from everyone in the village simultaneously lighting incense upon their altars.
I began to watch a man (no younger than 55) climb to the top of a bamboo scaffolding structure, he paced back and forth, checking for water damage and looking at the rope holding it together, he smoked a bent cigarette and took deep breaths while going over his workspace for the day. I love watching people, seeing how they move, tracking them with my lens. I find when taking photos of people in a candid format, you feel them, you become a part of who they are as you track their movements, you can hear them exhale and feel them taking their steps in your minds… It makes you question what beauty is when you watch a different world awaken for the same sunrise, just to pray and work. I find it sad how we come here and barter for 1 Australian dollar on a shitty pair of sunglasses or a cab… these people deserve better and I am just one man, I wish I could’ve done more besides the few 100,000 rupees I gave the street kids and homeless people or more than feeding the stray dogs and giving them water.
thanks for the love, take care and be kind to each other.