Bouquet of Happiness

Posted by: DreamSky

Costa Rica has been declared the happiest country in the planet earth. It has topped the HPI chart (Happy Planet Index). Nepal is standing at 37 with the HPI score of 51.6. Interesting enough, large and developed countries like USA and UK are found at the bottom of the chart (USA at 114 and UK at 74). In the indexer’s words “The Happy Planet Index reveals the ecological efficiency with which human well-being is delivered. The index combines environmental impact with human well-being to measure the environmental efficiency with which, country by country, people live long and happy lives.” Like one of my friends comment, I think what it essential means is the index of ‘living in harmony’.

At the philosophical side (if you hate philosophy you can safely skip this paragraph :) ), I have been thinking for a while – that ultimately the essence of the goal of life is the happiness. People may believe in different routes to reach that state. Some may find it in wealth and power and others would see it in the intellectual attainments. Some may find it in the religious devotion and others may take the path of self realization. Some would find happiness staying at the ‘giving end’ while others would enjoy the ‘receiving end’. Some finds happiness solving the problems while others find happiness just by ignoring them. Whatever the way it is, the attained happiness is priceless. Happiness in a lavish lifestyle is in no way superior to the happiness farmers find with their successful crops. There are different believes, ideologies, ethics and standards whose job is to define which paths to happiness are right and which are wrong but still they are all dealing with the ultimate goal of life which is to be happy. There should have been a God of Happiness. Just a thought.

With all this in mind I recalled the feelings I had last month when I was in my remote village Majuwa at Bhojpur. No road, no electricity, my village is really deprived by the Nation’s development process. But in the other side, I met many more happy people there than I usually meet in the cities. Genuinely happy people.The trepidation of the current recession cannot even touch them. This is a place where even a 10Rs bill can bring a pouring happiness.

Let me share some happiness straight from my village :)


(The village Majuwa)

Bouquet of Happiness was last modified: August 31st, 2010 by DreamSky

Blog Comments

  1. P RAI

    Dhillung,I must say you got serious talent.Fantastic pictures.Thank you.Your photos made me really happy.

  2. Neeshaa

    The portraits are no doubt, Awesome. The portraits here seem to read your mind and perception on happiness or it’s the other way around :) …But great job DreamSky…
    At the meantime, while you said to skip the philosophical part, I enjoyed and agreed to most of it.

  3. Kishor

    Happiness has many faces. One interesting fact that the King of Bhutan first cointed the term Gross National Happiness (GNH) in 1972 and perhaps Bhutan wanted to make it more apparent so expelled thousands of its ethnic citizens who are now living as the refugees in various parts of the world. :smile:
    We Nepalese are well known for the geniuine smile and happiness that we show to strangers. I also feel people of village are more happier than that of cities coz I also belong to one of the many villages of Nepal. I don’t know 12 years of insurgency and the current situation of our country reflects that notion or not though.
    As a photo-enthusiast and learner of Photography, for me the pictures above are quite over colored. It is a personal choice though but I feel it a bit distracting coz my eyes are rolling over the pictures. My personal favourite is picture no 8 (4th from the bottom). Perfect portrait with perfect lighting.
    Keep sharing your precious collection… :smile:

  4. DreamSky Post author

    I am so happy to see all these vivid reflections of happiness in your comments. All your thanks go to the people of Majuwa. I was just a medium.

    Vish dai, I am awestruk by the story of 1981. In another moment I felt proud that I will be dying not just in Nepal but as a ‘proud Nepali’.
    Reminded me of the words by great musician Gopal Yonjan – “तिमिले एउटा खुट्टा जहाँ राखेपनि अर्को खुट्टा चाँहि नेपालमै राख् नु ।” (Wherever you place your one foot make sure another one is at your country Nepal.)

    Dear Shutterbug, thank you for your kind suggestions. I would have wanted to avoid conversation with technical garbles, annoying nontechnical ppl who are here just to enjoy photographs (not photography). But again I think it will be helpful for curious photographers like me out there. I’v been playing quite a lot with ISO to satisfy my choice of aperture and shutter speed. But when it comes to WhiteBalance selection, I am still not comfortable. In my experience, applying WYSIWYG in selecting WB temparature is difficult and theoritical knowledge has hardly come handy. For that, generally I shoot my important photographs in RAW mode (like last photograph above) rather than opting for a time consuming in spot WB calibration. I would be glad if you could provide some handy Pro-tips-and-tricks on this :)

    Once again thank you all. Your comments have made us all even happier.

  5. Vish

    Yes Mr. Sensible, M. A. E. Adams was real dude not only with dress and appearance but with understanding and entering into another’s feelings!

    Thanks for being on the mind of……….

  6. Shutterbug

    Wonderful portraits of happiness and they are spellbinding. DreamSky! You have beautifully captured those genuine smiles of people from your village Majuwa at Bhojpur and how you have blended your tender thoughts with your photography is admirable.

    Once I read somewhere a quote that says, ‘Too many people today know the price of everything and the value of nothing’. Very true in today’s context and I feel sorry for those people who underestimate the bill of Rs.10.

    Well, I know many viewers do get carried away by the thoughts you provoked in your text about happiness and feel of softness you have created through post production (first picture), but as a keen observer of pictures here in EU let me comment and suggest better orientation for your pictures which would have added more volume in the happiness it carries.

    Your choice of 50mm focal length and opting widest aperture f/1.8 to capture these pictures is a perfect recipe for successful portrait photography. Shallow depth of field made pictures pretty eyes catchy (except third portrait). Horizontal perspective through 50mm lens (Standard lens) gives a normal human perception which gives a feeling of familiarity but I strongly believe vertical composition go well with those portraits above. This is why the first portrait gives this feeling of balance and well composed. May be you were more focused to portray the happiness through people’s smiles who I see also have a very typical character. As a photojournalist, what pulled me most are those unique costumes of senior people, ornaments they were wearing, distinctive facial features .. etc I think shows the richness in culture of Majuwa village. And by going horizontal composition you have to crop out some of these important details, which also hold a greater value to your photo archive.

    A well planned and well balanced photo composition is the best way to transport a strong message to the viewers and to avoid hours in front of a computer screen for post-production.

    You have variable ISO Speed Rating in your pictures, why is that? Is it because you set it auto ISO? Try to feed ISO setting manually, which will give you more control in the quality of your pictures. The last portrait is my favorite one.

    DreamSky! Keep cherishing your photography to full and keep us spellbinding.

  7. jane

    Your collection of magnificent pictures,
    filled with pure smiles, was truly a bouquet of happiness
    as it poured happiness into me while I was looking at it…

    Many Many thanks for your sharing them with us all :)

  8. Ravi

    Happiness is the state of mind, it depends on us how we perceive things. Its not what we can pursue, it just happen.

    Pursuit of happiness and state of happiness are two different things.

    DreamSky, you would have never become so much happy if you were in the chase of happiness, it just happened and u became happy and you made many of us happy with this one.

    Cheers :)

  9. Vish

    Dear DSky,

    Your post and card reminded me of Late Michael Alexender Earnest Adam, who was a Chartered Engineer and Boss of mine for the period of 2 years during 1981.

    By then he had been already working more than 30 different countries and Guess what HE USED TO SAY

    -vish- IF I WAS NOT MARRIED AND HAD NOT BEEN UNDER THE RESPOSIBILITIES OF FAMILY MAN I WOULD LOVE TO DIE IN NEPAL.

    Thank you DreamSky for taking me in past by pointing your finger-tip towards future!!!

    With my best wishes for more POSTCARD!

  10. sangharsha

    Superb presentation.., Awesome pics…

    Hats off to you DreamSky, you have succeeded in creating a wave of happiness in all those who saw the presentation.
    Cheers to you!

  11. suresh

    It’s yesterday or Day before it , i’ve read the news that “Costa Rica has been declared the happiest country in the planet earth.” and today your post has proved what ever may be the ranking of Nepal, lots of Nepalese peoples are still happy and they know how to live life happily.

    Really liked this perspective of presentation, and Pics are wow.
    All the portraits are superb and i can even feel the happiness of those faces.

  12. Lenscape

    People will forget to comment!! Marvelous!!

    Hats off to the presentation you have made in this post. A hearty salute to a photographer (you may not like to be called one.. :-) ) who knows what he is presenting. I am sure, no photographers from Nepal have ever thought this perspective of presentation.

  13. GBG

    thanks DreamSky for sharing your thoughts and pictures. reminds me of my own village and people. one form of happiness is one derived from others’ happiness. all those smiles are priceless indeed.

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