28 November 2009

Potter spinning his wheel, Rajasthan

Mid January 2007, near Jodhpur. At the shop where the elephants and tortoises lined up, we watched the potter throw a simple vase. His wheel might have been the simplest of all forms of potter's wheel — a great disc of stone on a bearing, spun expertly with a stick. Its momentum kept it going for long periods.

Although the surrounding desert by then was brilliant, the interior of the shop was dim. The exposure for this photo was one sixth of a second at f5.6, ISO 400.

All content © 2009 Pete McGregor


Zhoen said...

I've thrown on a manual (ped-al) stone wheel, of a much more modern design. Took some energy. Doing the same on the ground, with a stick, just amazes me.

Lesley said...

Pete, the dim light was to the advantage of the photo, although it must have been hard to hold the camera steady. The slow shutter speed has allowed the movement to show - much better than had it been frozen. I do like this.

pohanginapete said...

Zhoen, I didn't try spinning the wheel, but it appeared to be very efficient — although I suspect getting the coordination right would require substantial practice.

Lesley, yes, without that motion blur the photo would be pretty mundane. A tripod would have been handy, but image stabilisation and years of practice certainly helped.

Barbara said...

Alone of the photographers whose work I enjoy, yours make me hear. That's it - I listen to your photos as much as look at them. I think the whirr of that wheel, with perhaps a few 'ticks' when the stick touched, would be rather hypnotic. Oh, another thing - the eyes of India are enigmatic ... they just pull at me.

pohanginapete said...

Thank you, Barbara — that pleases me greatly, because I'm more interested in photos that evoke rather than represent.