Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Kenyan portraits





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El Molo Woman. El Molo, Lake Turkana, Kenya

"The El Molo are the smallest ethnic group in Kenya, numbering about 300 people. They live on lava rock of the southeast shore of Lake Turkana. Their dwellings resemble igloos, built from what scrub vegetation of the volcanic wasteland has to offer.
The tiny population fishes the lake for giant Nile perch; occasionally they hunt crocodiles and hippos. The El Molo drink water directly from the lake which brings them many medical problems."


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Samburu Woman

"The Samburu are related to he Masai although they live just above the equator where the foothills of Mount Kenya merge into the northern desert. They are semi-nomadic pastoralists whose lives revolve around their cows, sheep, goats, and camels. Milk is their main stay; sometimes it is mixed with blood. Meat is only eaten on special occasions. Generally they make soups from roots and barks and eat vegetables if living in an area where they can be grown."


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El Molo Woman. El Molo, Lake Turkana, Kenya




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Samburu Man resting outside a butchery in South Horr.



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Turkana Woman. Loyangalani, Kenya.

"The Turkana are Kenya's third-largest tribe and the second largest group of nomadic pastoralists (aftter Maasai). The majority live in Turkana District of Rift Valley in the arid northwest of Kenya. Most of Turkana are cattle herders, some engage in small-scale agriculture and fishing on Lake Turkana. They speak Turkana which is similar to the Maasai language and is considered to be of Nilotic in origin."


Incidentally the images are completely wrong for the book cover, but they are gorgeous none the less.

Frantisek Staud has also taken photographs of the (tiny) Scottish island I grew up on, which amuses me given the big wide world he has travelled and photographed. My island is not on the average list of 'must-see' places, even among the 'must-see' Scottish islands. It should be, but it's not. It's too hard to get to, the tourist industry is too under-developed and no celebrities have been married or opened restaurants there. But it is heaven on earth and one day I will share some pictures of it.

All images and italicised words from www.phototravels.net and copyright of Frantisek Staud