100 Days in India Project – an Introduction
Back at the start of 2020 my world, and most other people’s, was thrown into a strange chaos. I make my living as a self-employed wedding photographer and I had a whole year of wonderful weddings lined up to be photographed. It was actually going to be a particularly great year as I had been working hard to transition away from larger weddings towards including more smaller weddings and elopements. Things were going great!
At the very beginning of the year a mysterious virus, far away in China, was making headlines but, I’ll be honest, I didn’t really give it much thought. People were writing funny songs about it and it seemed just like so many news stories that were generated to attract readers. Then, at the end of March, things got real. In mid-March, at a wedding I was photographing in a remote location in the Highlands, the couple had to change their plans because a local hotel had reported cases of this mysterious virus (there had just been a small medical conference held there). It was no big deal. Instead of going out for dinner they just went to the shops and bought ingredients for stew. It was a wakeup call though. This distant pathogen had made it here, to a tiny bit of Scotland.
Then, a few days after, the first of so many lockdowns was imposed. That wedding trip to the Highlands would be the last place outside my village that I would be able to visit for months. My year of hard-earned and carefully planned wedding bookings fluttered away completely to almost nothing in only a few days, taking with it almost all my year’s income. I was angry and frustrated with my clients, but in reality I’d have cancelled my own wedding too.
I felt well and truly lost. I’m a worker. I need to be busy and, up until that point in time, I always had been.
My wife, through her artistic channels, heard about a 100 Days project. Each day, for 100 days, you post an image and write about it. That image could be anything at all. She posted drawings and painting, and I decided to share my photographs and stories of the two visits I have made to India in 2018 and 2019. This sounded like just the thing to lift me out of my gloom.
Originally this project was posted on social media, one image per day. It is still somewhere on Instagram and Twitter if you scroll back (109 weeks ago today apparently), so I thought it would be good to make it more accessible. Here on this blog I will be reposting the images and their accompanying text in the same format. Without the character limit restrictions I might add more detail to the stories but, on the whole, they will be the same.
This is certainly not a guide to India, nor is it a travel blog where I am going to plug fancy hotels and restaurants. Instead, this is simply a collection of 100 interesting things I noticed about India based completely on my own observations and experiences from the roughly 8 weeks I have spent there.