Photo Gallery: Burmese Days: Sunrise on a New Myanmar

Temples of Bagan – Photo (c) Russell Johnson

I read George Orwell’s “Burmese Days “while traveling through Burma aka Myanmar on a filming assignment in the 1990s  The country looked then as if it hadn’t changed much since Orwell’s 1930s. Burma was oppressed, frozen in time, isolated from the rest of the world. That has gradually changed, largely due to social media, militant monks and the presence of Aung San Suu Kyi the country’s face of freedom.

Today, after a free election, the jackboots of the ruling generals (depicted on their currency as men with small heads and large hats) may have finally been lifted.

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Nepal: Beyond the Mountain (Video)

Here is a video introduction to Nepal we did in the 90s, sponsored by the United Nations Development Programme as part of a campaign to tell the world that Nepal was much more than Mt. Everest, that it offered some of the most unique natural and cultural treasures in the world. Unfortunately some of the heritage sites shown in the video are now in rubble. The video was produced in English, French, German and Japanese and, long before YouTube, was cited by the Daily Telegraph and the BBC as being a prime example of he possibilities of new medium, streaming video.

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Thirty Faces of Nepal

All Photos (c) Russell Johnson – Two Boys, Kathmandu

I  spent quite a lot of time in Nepal in the 1990s participating in heritage conferences and for the UN Development Programme on a project to reduce poverty through sustainable tourism. I met hundreds of people. Here are some of the faces that need the world’s help now more than ever.

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On The Beach in Kochi, India

KeralaBeach600-2Kochi Beach – Oil Painting, Pat Meier-Johnson

They looked like confetti. Crowds of families wading in the shallow waters of Kochi, just a short distance from the giant fairy-blue fishing nets of this port city in southwest India. Holding their peacock-colored saris up just above the water line, women shared some time off with their boyfriends, children or friends.

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