Giving Back via Photography - Pondicherry in India

A couple of months ago I spent a week in and around Pondicherry taking photos and relaxing. Pondicherry or Puducherry as it is officially known was an ex French colony until fairly recently. It is a nice place to visit especially if you are on a round trip of India as it is a small quiet town that caters for tourists well. You can feel spoilt eating European breakfasts daily and enjoying Pizzas, chips and European beers in the evening!

As with most places in India it is also a great place for photography. Like the majority of tourist places you do not have to venture far out of the bubble and as a westerner you become a rarity! This was true on the outskirts of Pondicherry where I walked to one day and discovered a quaint fishing village where the locals were as interested in me as I was with them! I returned to the area a couple of times that week with fellow photographer and couchsurfing friend Soufaine Ghzal who I had met in Varkala on a previous adventure. After sending some of the parents the images we took of some of the families we decided that it would be nice to print some of the better images and return to the village to give to those involved.

After getting around sixty different photos printed up we ventured back to the village to distribute them. It was a little difficult locating all of the children in the images but we had a lot of fun trying! The parents were genuinely appreciative of the gesture and the children seemed incredibly excited to see themselves in print for perhaps the first time. A lot of people in India will ask you to take their photo and many ask for a print or copy so it was nice this time to be able to return with what they had asked for. Click through the slideshow below to view some of shots we took of the local people living on the outskirts of Pondicherry:

After handing out the images and interacting with the locals we both agreed that returning with gifts of photography was much more beneficial and thoughtful than simply handing out money to strangers. It also enabled us to get some nice portraits and street style photography in this part of India.

More of my travel photography from Pondicherry can be found on my websiteInstagramFacebook Page and my Flickr account.  If you would like any more information about any of my images please send an email to: