Andrew Stelmach

Andrew Stelmach

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Living in:

United Kingdom United Kingdom

Joined:

May 2011

  • 0 rating

    Is it ok to draw/paint images of the monks in Laos and other areas?

    In summary, it won't be frowned upon anywhere! And there are not many place you can say that about. I've had experience of watching the 'most-watched' procession, which is the morning procession in Luang Prabang, and it was very uncomfortable (read 'fking irritating and embarrassing') to see a western tourist getting really up close to the monks and snapping away, trying to get that 'awesome shot' despite the fact that it's been done a million times already. Even though I was hanging back and resisting getting my camera out, in the end I got my telephoto lens out and took just a couple of frames of what is a genuinely authentic daily scene: https://www.flickr.com/photos/andyuk1/5998115968/in/photostream/lightbox/ The monks ignored the photographer. That's part of the 'buddhist way' - they would be doing themselves a disservice if they reacted to such behaviour. However, that doesn't make it 'ok', in my book. The way I see it, so long as you're not an idiot like the guy I described, you'll be absolutely fine, and like someone else said, you might end up getting some really close, NATURAL, contact with some monks. I also stumbled upon a ceremony in another, smaller, town in Laos, and my presence with a camera was well received. I still acted sensitively, but I was getting into conversations with monks and no-one expressed any objection to my camera. I really do think that an artist painting will have absolutely ZERO problems wherever they decide to paint. The Laos culture seems to be very open to people recording them, compared to the West, and a painter would likely be well received. Enjoy. Go and do it. It will the experience of a lifetime! about 5 years ago

  • 0 rating

    how badly do I need an onward ticket to fly into Bangkok?

    I've flown into Bangkok twice (I'm British) - once in 2011 and once in 2012. Neither time did they ask for proof of onward travel. I've never heard of anyone being asked. Next time I fly into BKK, I definitely won't purchase an onward flight ticket. over 6 years ago

  • 0 rating

    Overnight Stop en route from Bangkok to Phrae?

    I'd do Bangkok to Chiang Mai on the night train and arrange onward travel from Chiang Mai to Phrae for either the day you arrive in Chiang Mai or, better, the following day. Chiang Mai is well worth the visit and you're spoilt for choice when it comes to accomodation. It also has anything you could want to buy, all easily accessible, unlike Bangkok. over 6 years ago