Mar 072015

 Earth, Water, Fire and Air:  Explore the Elements

Photography competitions are a tricky lot and one is never sure what to expect in the result as you are not only competing against the very best around the world you are also competing with yourself to showcase what you think is your best work.

So a long time ago I decided that if I will take part in a photography contest it will be for the fun of it,  as it encourages me to check the good work of artists from around the work it subconsciously helps me learn new things just by looking at wonderful pictures from around the world.

No wonder once I asked a great photographer whom I had the honor of meeting his first and only suggestion was “Read a lot, study the work of great masters, and then develop your own style”

Anyways long story short, I stumbled upon the “Explore The Elements – Travel Photoblogging Challenge”

Organized by Thomas Cook, the global travel company.

The theme of the contest is very simple you need to interpret the four basic elements

  • Earth 
  • Water
  • Fire
  • Air

Though I am not sure why Space the fifth element was left as in India we consider the universe to be made of 5 elements. Anyways that is beyond the scope so here are my 4 pictures and why I chose each one of them to submit for the contest. My basic idea was to pick pictures that could represent more than one element and still the primary element should be clear in the picture.

Earth:  The contest description says Earth – Represents the hard, solid objects of the earth Associated with stubbornness, collectiveness, physicality and gravity. So my entry for the same is this picture of herd of Blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra) returning to their colony in around sunset, in the Tal Chapar Sanctuary Rajasthan.

Blackbuck Tal Chapr Rajasthan

EARTH: Blackbuck in Sunset

Why I chose this picture: Earth is the basic and first of the elements. These Blackbucks rushing back home before it gets dark represents the collective consciousness of the universe that guides them to safety, triggering a biological clock making them stop foraging and jointly run towards safety. They run so fast that there stomping raises a dust storm in the air making the evening magical.

Water: Represents the fluid, flowing, formless things in the world Associated with emotion, defensiveness, adaptability, flexibility, suppleness, and magnetism. Again this picture is from the same desert sanctuary of Tal Chapar and I love it for a lesson for us humans in it. While we pollute our water resources and nations fight over water, nature gives an important reminder  to us. These two distinct species a resident blackbuck doe and this migratory Bonelli’s Eagle peacefully shared the watering hole on a hot day in the oasis of Tal Chapar. We carefully photographed the two from a distance making sure they are oblivious to our presence.

Watering Hole desert eagle deer

WATER: A Female Blackbuck and a Bonelli’s Eagle share watering hole in the Oasis of Tal Chapar


Represents the energetic, forceful, moving things in the world Associated with security, motivation, desire, intention, and an outgoing spirit

Fire Lanterns

FIRE: If you can channelize the fire in your belly constructively you will rise above all

This image was clicked in the dining hall of a restaurant with an open kitchen to capture the patterns that the lanterns made. A kitchen is one of the most amazing place to use Fire in a constructive manner. Raw ingredients are magically transformed into gourmet dishes using the transforming powers of fire. The lanterns are electrical replicas of the fire lanterns of yesteryear and to me represent the responsibility with which we need to use a major force of nature like Fire which is formed by destroying the existing and yet forges bonds of the future if used in a proper way.  The lanterns at  the ceiling gave me a message that if you have a fire in your belly and use it constructively you will rise above all surrounding  you.


Represents things that grow, expand, and enjoy freedom of movement Associated with will, elusiveness, evasiveness, benevolence, compassion, and wisdom

kerala fisherman

Air: The Fisherman and the birds in sky

This picture of the fisherman was clicked with the aim to capture the eagle and other birds soaring above him in the sky.  The fisherman is aware of them but is not disturbed by them and actually at times shares some of his find form the sea with those in the sky. The birds in there acquired wisdom know that their patience will pay reward and once the nets are folded they will get their share of the bounties of the ocean. A beautiful amalgamation of air, water and earth all revolving around that giant ball of fire called sun. The Fire and Air pictures were both clicked in Kerala

Well these are my interpretations of the theme and the pictures that I thought captured the essence of the theme. What do you say ?

Now as per the contest I am spreading the message and request the following 5 awesome bloggers to participate in the theme

  1. Deepak Amembal
  2. Tarun Gaur
  3. Anindya Basu
  4. Inma Gregorio
  5. Emaneuele Siracusa

Visit the official rules for –  Explore The Elements – Travel Photoblogging Challenge here, and the hashtag to be used for twitter is: #ExploreTheElements

All the best to all the participants including myself . And if you are wondering what you can win well then here is the list

PrizesCategory prizes:The winner of each photo category will be able to choose one of the following prizes (subject to availability):



If you have liked reading the post please feel free to subscribe by email and like it or share it with your friends on FacebookLinkedInInstagram, twitter and Google+ .

I promise that I will not sell, rent, or donate your email to anybody

🙂 🙂 🙂

  15 Responses to “Explore The Elements – Travel Photoblogging Challenge by Thomas Cook”

Comments (14) Pingbacks (1)
  1. I entered the competition too – that’s how I found your blog. Your photos are wonderful – good luck in the competition!
    Here’s mine if you’re interested…

  2. Loved the images and my favorite is your yellow earth with all the deer, that is simply stunning….good luck to you!

  3. Some superb images up there. The one from Tal Chapar seems almost surreal with that awesome glow.

    C’mon, your pictures are really good, too.
    I participated ‘coz the theme made an irresistible prompt.

  4. the blackbuck picture is so beautiful 🙂

  5. Am honoured to have been nominated to participate. Shall surely give it my best. Thank you!!

  6. Beautiful pics as always Prasad. I especially love the photos you chose for Earth and Air! Keep up the great work. 🙂

  7. fantastic photos! good luck! 🙂

Dear fellow traveler welcome to desi Traveler, I am excited to have you here, please share your thoughts and I will be very happy to reply. Please check our Blog Comment Policy. All comments are moderated and urls in comments end in spam automatically. Happy travels.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.