This is the second of two galleries covering my visit to Southeast Asia in 2005. This gallery offers 100 impressions of Myanmar, known to history and legend as Burma. We spent only a week within its borders, visiting its capital Yangon (formerly known as Rangoon), its city of ancient temples Bagan (formerly known as Pagan), and the colorful area around Mandalay. Myanmar is a reticent host -- it welcomes foreign tourists but does not go out of its way to entice them. The archaic Yangon airport is grimly depressing, and the country is still repressively ruled by generals. Most visitors seem to be traveling there as individuals or as members of small tours. Facilities range from luxurious to basic, and its internal air transportation is remarkably efficient, featuring new airports in Bagan and Mandalay. Its sights can be breathtaking, and its people are open, kind and distinctive. Myanmar might lack the western amenities of neighboring Thailand -- even credit cards are banned. Yet Myanmar's temples and monasteries are as vibrant as any in Asia. Enjoy these images and draw your own conclusions. (The first gallery covering this trip offers 105 visual impressions of neighboring Laos.)
If you've viewed the previous galleries I've posted on this site, you'll note that my photographic intentions are focused on interpretation, rather than description. I've continued to do this in these galleries on my 2005 Southeast Asian adventures. I want my pictures to express how I feel about what I see, rather than just recording what I've seen or where I've been. Aside from sharing these pictures with you on this website, I also am using many of them to teach the principles of expressive travel photography on my pbase website http://www.pbase.com/pnd1
) as well as in the tutorial workshops I give in Phoenix for those desiring instruction in photojournalism, expressive travel photography and digital imaging. These images were gleaned from the more than 4,000 digital pictures I shot during my three weeks spent in these places. I used three digital cameras, a Leica Digilux 2, and a Panasonic FZ-20 -- both five megapixel fixed lens cameras, as well as a seven megapixel fixed lens Canon G6. All of the Canon photographs were taken with a Canon .7x wideangle converter placed over my zoom lens, which provided me with the equivalent of a 24mm wideangle lens, a focal length that I feel is essential for effective travel and landscape photography. The Lieca Digilux 2 offers an incredibly sharp f/2.0 28mm-90mm zoom lens, and an oversized sensor, which creates images with extra fine detail. It also functions without noticeable shutter lag, allowing me to stop action as desired. I used the Leica Digilux 2 very rarely on this trip. The most heavily used camera on this trip was the Panasonic FZ-20, which features an amazing 36mm-432mm Leica f/2.8 lens with image stabilization, allowing me to use its long telephoto reach in low light situations with remarkable clarity. I've edited all of these images with Photoshop to correct and refine the hue, color, contrast and sharpness levels, hopefully making my pictures more vibrant and meaningful. Although all of these photographs were digitally enhanced to some degree, none of the content has been significantly manipulated. The facts are all here, as I captured them.
To view my images at their best, just click the "slideshow" button in the top right hand corner. To end the slide show at any time, press your "escape" key. I hope you will enjoy my photographic impressions. I welcome any comments or questions. Phil Douglis Director, The Douglis Visual Workshops, Phoenix, Arizona, email@example.com