WALKING THE RED CARPET
Guntur, a district in India's southern state of Andhra Pradesh, has a spicy reputation. This beautiful district is a global hub for the cultivation and export of chillies. What appears to be a soft woolly red carpet are actually rows of dried, harvested chilli heaps. The heat and flavors of these chillies come at a cost. Chilli farmers put in blood, sweat, and tears as they toil in India's blistering tropical heat to harvest the crop. They then meticulously lay the chillies in rows for the Sun to do the rest of the work. The end result's symmetry stands as a testament to their efforts. This step is critical for preserving the quality of the chillies before they are processed, packed, and shipped to tingle pallets all over the world. The vantage point shows the contrast between horizontal rows at the top and vertical columns at the bottom while preserving a pleasing ratio between the two. But what ties them together and infuses the soul into this image is the farmer dressed in white. The farmer and his shadow cast upon the heaps serve as an anchor point in the image. I have used the textures, the composition, the story, and the potential of the image to pique the viewers’ curiosity and hold their attention in order to create a compelling work of art, but the real celebrity walking the red carpet is the chilli farmer in white.