And now, after so much subdued colour, something completely different: silk patolas spread for display at the manufacturer's, a small family-run business near Bhuj in north-western Gujarat. The information on the wall said these patolas take on average 10–15 days each to make. Each of the small dots forming the pattern was formed from a tiny wrinkle of cloth tightly wound by hand with cotton to prevent that part from absorbing the dye; we know it as "tie-and-dye" but here, where the art reaches its pinnacle, it's called bandhani ("BUND-a-nee") Even for a bloke like me, they were strikingly beautiful, but capturing the colours and sheen in a photo proved difficult, particularly in the dim indoors. However, the slow shutter speed did capture the movement as he spread them with a flourish.
[1/15 sec., f4, ISO 800]
All content © 2008 Pete McGregor