Here we have a cheerful older woman smiling at the photographer in the village of Vadgam in Gujarat.
A visitor to our exhibition today commented that I should learn the Hindi for ‘smile at the camera, please!’
Smiling at the camera may be an automatic reaction and is certainly the expected response, but that’s a bit like putting on a mask, and I prefer the person without the mask. It’s also a natural way to greet people so I can understand why the visitor thought that the India portraits in our exhibition were looking preoccupied or moody.
I prefer moody, though I really like the two contrasting expressions seen in this photo that was taken in Gujarat, last Novemeber.