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Art of portrait

How do you capture a person's soul in less than one sixtieth of a second? How do you visualize someone's character in a 24mm by 36mm frame when it takes an entire lifetime to realize you hardly know them at all?

You can find all these answers in the narrow hallway of gallery Zoom of “Alliance Francaise”. A photography exhibition on portraits opened on 11 June 2009 at 5pm showcasing photographs taken during a 10-day workshop at Pathshala, South Asian Institute of Photography, ran by Hasib Zakaria and Din M Shibly. It was a venture of 23 students to explore the world of portraits through the “Art of Photography”. All new to the craft these photographers were drawn by the power of this art to speak without word, to arouse emotion in a complete stranger.

But to portray the essence of life through portraits these 23 talented photographers started their learning far from digital SLR. Drawing in the sketchbook, watching breathtaking cinematography, listing to music and sharing their point of view about all genres of photography from abstract to documentary were necessary to fine tune their senses. And the results of their work are these fresh, vibrant and captivating images revealing the most ordinary people as special works of art.

Through a collaborative editing process, they put together this exhibition. They searched human emotion; technical proficiency and artistic vision and finally everything came together in single a moment, which is this exhibition of their work.

Photography is a journey to discover the world through the camera as a third eye. And through portraits you can find your own soul through the emotions and expressions of other people. That is why Oscar Wilde said “Every portrait that is painted with feeling is a portrait of the artist, not of the sitter”.

The exhibition runs until 24 June, 2009. So if you have some time to drench yourself with some excellent work of photography this exhibition is a must go for you.

By Zabir Hasan
Venue: Alliance Francaise

Unite to combat climate change
Your planet needs you

"YOUR Planet needs you! Unite to Combat Climate Change” was decided as the theme for World Environment Day (WED)-2009 by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The WED was held on 5th June 2009 in Mexico and UNEP with people from the world over to celebrate and create awareness to stop Global Warming and Climate Change.

We know Global Warming is the rise in temperature of the earth's atmosphere due to greenhouse effect resulting especially from pollution. Scientists expect the average global temperature to increase an additional 20 to 60F over the next one hundred years, which could change the earth's climate as never before. Increase in temperature will bring changes in the things that people depend on. These things include the level of the oceans and the places where we plant crops. They also include the air we breathe and the water we drink.

This global warming affects people's health due to rising CO2 in the atmosphere, which increases human mortality. Global warming also contributes to some five million human illnesses every year, especially in developing nations, it includes spreading of infectious diseases such as malaria, dengue fever; malnutrition and diarrhoea; and increases the frequency and severity of heat waves, floods and other weather-related disasters. Also glaciers melt and expanded water levels cause the seas to rise. Coastal flooding could cause saltwater flow in to areas where salt is harmful, threaten plants and animals in those areas.

The time to act is now Join the 'Unite Campaign' and send out a message to the world that we need to unite, agree and combat climate change before it is too late! Unite to Combat Climate Change; we should remember that Nations don't change until individuals change. Great movements have all started with one concerned individual, Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, all dared stand up for the truth and harnessed a universal awareness as they did so.

Every individual should unite together to combat climate change and we can follow number of steps to save our planet from global warming and climate change:

· If we try, most of us can do our part to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases that we put in to the atmosphere. Many greenhouse gases come from things we do everyday.

· We can use less energy by car-pooling. For example four people can ride together in one car instead of driving four cars to work. We can save energy by sometimes taking the bus, riding a bike or walking.

· By turning off lights, Televisions, Computers when we are done using them although with.

· Planting trees is fun and great way to reduce greenhouse gases. Trees absorb CO2 from the air.

· Recycling cans, bottles, plastic bags, newspapers we can send less trash to the landfill. We also help save natural resources like trees, oil, aluminum etc.

· Recycled products are usually made out of things that already have been used. We should buy recycled products, as it takes less energy than to make new ones.

· By using solar energy we can heat our house, building, water and to make electricity to avoid emissions greenhouse gases in the air.

By Shafeen Mahmood

Something to Hope for

LET'S face it- reading about other people's failures and mishaps puts smiles on our faces. It's a fact, sad but true. Thousands of readers each day spend hours on fmylife.com, doing exactly that. However, when posed one question, all of them are rendered speechless. Would you like it if the world was laughing at you after a bad day? There are multiple excuses and different ways of approaching this, but it is a depressing thought, and, at the end of the day, fmylife.com is a depressing website. That is exactly why Gaby Montero and Emerson Spartz created www.givesmehope.com in May 2009. They wanted a website that was inspirational and uplifted people, not one that they laughed at and secretly pitied. So far, it has been a huge success. We've gone from “Today, I received my passport in the mail. They got my birth date wrong. Then I picked up my birth certificate that I had sent in with the application. Turns out my parents have been celebrating my birthday on the wrong day for 16 years. FML” to “I woke up one morning to hear the birds outside my window and my mother cooking breakfast downstairs. I've never cried so much in my entire life. I had been deaf since the age of 8.” It's stories like those that make this website so popular. In a time of economic recessions, political tensions, and environmental concerns, sharing hope is what is pulling people through. GHM picking up momentum rapidly, and, hopefully, there will be a day when it is more popular than FML.

By Ihsan B. Kabir

“Jamming For Peace”

"JAMMING For Peace” is a youth-led organization set up by Joud Kashgari and Lubna Alzaroo, basically college-bound kids in Cairo and the US of A. Driven by a passion for music along with a responsibility to serve for humanity, they have created an opportunity for composers, musicians and singers all over the world to collaborate and create a CD that will spread the message of peace. The best thing about this project is that they have not set up any restraint on the genres of music. Basically if you're talented and got a knack for music you can easily apply. Moreover, you can even claim fame at an international level, who knows right?

The project is conducted sorely over the internet since it's not really feasible for musicians over the world to meet up at one place. It's scheduled to start in September 2009. So if you think you possess the skills and the inquisitiveness to try something new, apply before August 1st, 2009. Mails can be sent to Jkashgari@gmail.com and lalzaroo@googlemail.com for more details and application forms. Also join their Facebook group, http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=114196091010&ref=ts .

By Faria Sanjana



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