“Between reality and illusion, falls the shadow” - Is there a need for Responsible Photography policies?
Somewhere in the middle of larger things, we felt a need to stop and think about images and how we showcase our perception of the world. Today, there is no time for words and speech -it’s a world of images. Strung together, differently, they are meant to suggest what we stand for. We can get away with perceptions of what the world thinks of us as individuals, organisations and networks, but are we keeping someone else in the dark?
After much thought and deliberation, we have decided to make our views on photography, public.
We posted an initial email with some pointers on Face book and were delighted to find so many people interested to contribute to the policy that we are still in the process of devising. We will give it some more time to evolve, so that we can construct a strong and reasonable photography policy for travellers. Meanwhile scroll down to see what emerged in the last week on our Face book discussion board! After all, it’s all about being a conscious.
On photographs, memories and things like that
Please take prior consent from people before taking their photograph.
If you intend to publish this photograph, either in a personal blog, articles, publications, brochures, etc, please take approval from the people. This might seem tedious, but it’s worth it because somebody's privacy is at stake.
If you want to take photographs of religious places, please check with local community members if this is allowed.
If you decide to publish these photographs, please do mention names and details of these community members, if a not a small description. This way people don't become cardboard cut outs.
Maintain certain amount of distance from the subject. Taking the lens too close will intimidate people.
If you are watching an art, musical or cultural performance, please don't use flash. It tends to distract the performers. Better still, check with the performers before you start taking pictures.
Since travel and photography go hand in hand, please ensure that you have a person with you who can interpret. This way you will not be a total stranger in the community. First speak to the people you are staying with about their feelings towards photographs and then judge (using your gut feeling) if it’s appropriate.
TBY Associates at the ITB Berlin’08
The Blue Yonder along with Kurumba Village Resort (The Nilgris, Tamilnadu) and Raheem Residency (Alleppey Kerala) are participating at the ITB in Berlin. Staged annually in Berlin under one roof, ITB is staged during the 05-09th of March 2008 this year.
ITB Berlin is the perfect place to learn about new trends, concepts and cooperation possibilities – and to deepen existing business relations. “The whole variety of travelling is present at ITB Berlin 2008: Destinations, tour operators, booking systems, carriers, hotels and all other suppliers who want to embellish their customer’s most beautiful weeks of the year. ITB Berlin brightens your business.” [The Blue Yonder]
Meet us at the Incredible India Pavillion Booth 3.
Contact us for appointments:
Gopinath Parayil – Founder and Chief Executive (The Blue Yonder)
Sandeep Sinha - Chief Manager (The Blue Yonder)
Sanjay Awatramani - Managing Director (Kurumba Village Resort - The Nilgris)
Bibi Baskin – Managing Director (Raheem Residency – Alleppey)
TBY to organise post and pre Responsible Tourism Conference in Kerala
The Blue Yonder will be organising Pre and Post Conference tours related to the Second International Conference on Responsible Tourism in Destinations slated to be between 21-24th of March 2008 in Kochi, Kerala. A follow up to the first RT conference in Cape Town 2002, this conference looks at the progress made in Responsible Tourism since then across the world.
Eight unique case studies including the River Nila initiative from The Blue Yonder is show cased and discussed at the conference and the post and pre tour will be a good opportunity for the delegates to understand the dynamics of Responsible Tourism initiatives from Kerala. The tours have been designed in such a way that one can cover South Kerala, Central Kerala, North Kerala and a unique Cultural and Heritage circuit with a focus on River Nila as a destination.
Delegates from Bhutan, Canada, France, Gambia, Germany, Hong Kong, Kenya, Malaysia, Ecuador,
Monaco, Oman, Pakistan, Singapore, Nepal, Switzerland, Bhutan, South Africa, Sri Lanka and the UK have already registered for the conference. If you have not yet registered for the Conference as a delegate please do it here at the earliest, as there are few seats available.
To register for the Pre and Post tours, you can get in touch with Sandeep Sinha. We are looking forward to seeing you in Kerala!
TBY offers unique holiday experiences in Rajasthan and Karnataka.
The Blue Yonder started off from a small river (Nila) in Kerala to promote, practise and involve more people in responsible Tourism. Our holidays focus on experiences and journeys and over the years have spread the same philosophy across the destinations we are present in India.
We cover Kerala, Karnataka, Sikkim, Spiti Valley, Sunderbans and now Rajasthan. We have come a long journey from Kerala to Rajasthan. [Rajasthan] The idea is to diffuse the philosophy which usually adapts itself to the place, people, culture, tradition and the environment they live in. We are strengthening our network across the country to engage with more people, bring in new perspectives and carry this forward as a dynamic process.
We have met some very sensitive people along the way who have taught us new things, we have told people from lessons learned in our journey towards building Responsible destinations. We have interacted and implemented innovative activities suggested by community members and we have realised the increasing need for tourism being Responsible.
In Rajasthan we offer you a different holiday. It has been hard to sift through the several options and work with people we believe who will help carry this movement forward. A blend of attractive, popular, hidden and undiscovered destinations – our holidays promise you all the colours that Rajasthan offers. Rajasthan is one of the most travelled destinations in India, but as always , TBY is giving our travellers a different experiences because of the new places you visit and the opportunity to meet interesting people in specialised fields ranging from art culture, and environment.
Read through our interesting itineraries in Rajasthan here.
Karnataka, less visited and waiting to be discovered… Hidden behind its colours, the state awaits you amidst green hills and valleys, beneath rocks, hilltops and seas, around long, winding roads, along coasts and plains, within dense forests and caves, through art, culture and heritage, below the every sunset and blue moon, different colours outlined in one bold border – Karnataka.
Karnataka is a lifetime of journeys. The Blue Yonder takes you to the undiscovered places in Karnataka giving you the experiences of lifetime. Just set foot in, you’ll just keep travelling on… Check out some of our sample itineraries for exploring Karnataka below.
Colours changing hues | The Green Triangle | Join the dots...River Cauvery
Travellers speak about the TBY Experiences
"A truly unforgettable experience". Marius Kleiner, Switzerland. Jan 2008:
"We booked a two day stay in the River Nila region of North Kerala through Blue Yonder. Thinking back, it actually seems incredible that the whole trip lasted just two days, so rich was the experience.
It included a concert with a unique one-stringed guitar, a potter who made beautiful vessels and vases in just a few minutes on a manual potter's wheel, a musical dance performance and fire dance in the moonlight, a relaxing river cruise, a visit to a coconut plantation, and a performance of an expert young drummer group.
During the whole trip we haven't encountered any tourists, other than another couple who had also booked through Blue Yonder. This allowed us to get a good impression of village life in this part of India, without any feeling of intrusion or of people adapting their traditional lifestyles to the tourist industry.
Everything was perfectly organized, from the pick up at the train station by our very friendly guide Arun to the hospitable stay at the beautiful estate of the Namboodiri family. In addition, Blue Yonder facilitated for us the rental of a traditional houseboat in the Backwaters around Allepey, which was a truly unforgettable experience as well."
[Tirur River] "Opportunity to be more "responsible" tourists" Kremena Diatchka, Switzerland Jan 2008:
"If we had gone to Kerala as "regular" tourists we would never had had the opportunity to meet the people we did and learn as much from them as we did. So you provided us with an opportunity to be more "responsible" tourists, and we are grateful :-)"
"Truly unique" : Jenni Laird, Australia Jan 2008:
Each activity was a puzzle piece to the big puzzle of River Nila. So that each activity provided information that helped you understand other things that you saw and participated in.
Allowed the individual to feel that they were discovering this information for themselves – instead of just being told. This makes you feel like an ‘explorer’ something you do want to feel.
Both music programs were excellent. The uniqueness of the two groups was their endearing feature. For example, the more ‘professional’ performance qualities of the drumming group was a beautiful contrast to the folk group.
Having local knowledge – with the guide meant you felt more connected to the experience.
[Evening Cruise] The cruise on the river was the connecting feature of the program. Cruising down the river, seeing, feeling, smelling allowed you to rasp how this environment has influenced its people & villages.
Visiting the artisans was great. It would have been nice to actually see them at work, as well as seeing the different steps they take. Even for just 15 minutes, so that the visitor can truly appreciate the time, effort and skill required for these crafts.
The small visits along the river were fantastic. If there was a possibility for more of these I think it would be beneficial.
The entire program was well put together relaxing & energising. The only small tiring part was the large amount of car travelling. I understand this was probably due to my extremely short visit though!
Accommodation is excellent. In a longer program you could allow the visitors some free time to explore the house, surrounding land & villages – it’s a great location (so peaceful & so quiet) with delightful hosts.
[Boat at the Nila] Although the landscape, people and the couture are what people come to see, it is the guide that makes it possible for you to feel.
Having such outstanding and friendly personalities coupled with the local knowledge is what makes the experience truly unique.
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I have had such a fabulous time – I will be back very soon