QUICK SHOT: Boy from Nagar
By Ibraar Hussain
Sometimes an opportunity comes along when you pick up the camera and shoot an exposure, which no matter how many times you try and try again the results simply don’t quite match up to that first time.
In this case I was trekking in the Rakaposhi Range above the village of Minapin in the Nagar Valley of the Karakoram mountains. I was ill prepared (though I didn’t know it yet) and the trek resulted in a near disastrous retreat from the Rakaposhi Base Camp and a horrible arduous trek back to base.
We left in the morning and soon found ourselves amongst some villagers herding goats in a lovely high place called Bang-e-Das – we had stone shepherd huts storing fodder for the distinctive pygmy cows, goats and sheep in this rugged but awe-inspiring part of the world. A few kids were tending goats and playing around and one in particular was quite striking with his purple knitted sweater – after chatting to the people there I asked the kid if I could take his picture, he turned and look towards me and with the 45mm Planar T* G lens fitted to my Contax G2, I set Aperture to f2.8 (as I usually do for shallow depth of field with that 3D look) and snapped.
After getting back to England and getting the slides developed, I was astounded at how much of the boy’s personality I seemed to have caught, along with the soulful look in his striking eyes.
The Kodak Ektachrome e100vs was perfect for this, perfect – it brought out the colours of his sweater and his eyes, the features and colours of his face – the sleep in his eyes, the dirt on his face and his roguish boyish behaviour up there vanished for that instant when he looked into the camera – all with the softness of the Film which Digital would render too cleanly and too sharp.
Anyway, this is probably my favourite portrait for a multitude of reasons – so I thought I’d share it with you, and feel free to comment and agree or disagree with me.
Contax G2. 45mm Carl Zeiss Planar T* f2 @ f2.8. Kodak e100vs