Thailand - Chiang Rai
In the very far north of Thailand, where the Mekong meets Laos and Burma, the Golden Triangle Elephant Camp provides a better life for over 30 elephants. It's not enough to care for the elephants though, here they also care for the mahouts who own them and the families who rely on the income. Five-star resorts at Anantara and Four Seasons help keep the camp going and keep the elephants working.
A selection of images from this series can be purchased as a book. Follow the link below to preview "The Elephant Camp" and buy online.
Travellers in Northern Thailand can experience an exceptional program that takes elephants and their mahouts out of poverty and puts them to work in the Chiang Rai region. The Golden Triangle Elephant Camp is home to over 30 elephants and guests at Anantara Resort can take part in a 3 day mahout training class.
Riding elephants is a contentious issue for some people, but a domesticated elephant out of work is not a happy animal. When treated with respect and given the chance to work an elephant will be happy and healthy. More information on the welfare of elephants can be found here:
In August 2011 this series was exhibited in the Ballarat International Foto Biennale and won the Fringe Prize. Yay for these lovely elephants.
Ewen Bell's other website is called "Photography for Travellers", an online guide rich in features both practical and philosophical. Field guides to wonderful locations, insights into techniques plus inspiring idea to help you think differently about the art of photography.
Photography for Travellers
Ewen's guiding principles are simple...
"Go slow. Get closer. Look for the light."
"Photography is about showing other people how to see, to share the beauty of life. It's not a job, it's a lifestyle. We only get one lifetime, one chance to add some light into the world. Photography competitions are mostly silly. Cats are excellent."