India | Extreme Color

India | Extreme Color

These colors are not found in nature.  These colors are dazzling.  Resplendent.  Glorious.  Spectacular.

These are the colors of Jodhpur’s Clock Tower Market in India.

Flashes of crimson and tangerine, lilac and saffron, punctuate the dusty streets of the market.

Standing there dressed in beige, I watched women choosing fabrics from a profusion of brilliant hues, each one more gorgeous than the next. 

Textiles aren’t the only source of technicolor wonder…

Kaleidoscopes of confectionary, spices as colorful as they are flavorful, glossy green betel leaves, and radiant fruits and vegetables are a feast for the eyes.

Even the subtle hues of nuts, rice, lentils, and sugary sweets make a rich palette.

Chartreuse anise seeds practically glowed in the shadows of the market awnings.  He insisted on offering me a handful.

The yellows and fushias of marigolds and roses are strung with fragrant jasmine into garlands to place at the temples of the gods.

I love this photograph…isn’t it amazing how ordinary balls of twisted string can be so stunning?

Faded paint colors are still evident on ancient architecture that coexists with the bustling modern day market.

These women, dressed in vibrant pink and green, with florals of blue and yellow, are collecting garbage in the streets.

Color is often a sharp juxtaposition in an environment that can be harsh.

Lime green lentils lay in front of hot pink walls…painted on the wall above the men are the names of two goddesses, signifying good luck and prosperity. 

Many Muslim men dye their hair and beards with henna…the practice is said to be modeled after the prophet Muhammad.

I marveled, and couldn’t get enough of, the rainbow colors of the everyday life in this market.

My experience in India was sometimes a sensory overload…there was so much to see and hear and absorb and learn and understand.

In a setting that is unrelentingly gray with the grime and detritus of poverty, I was awed by the strength and radiance of those intense colors…

…colors that, to me, seemed to call out a tradition of fortitude and optimism and spirituality that transcends all.

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