Sonja Waschke

Photographer


📍Ethiopia

“Beautiful decorated girl from the Suri, living in the southern part of Ethiopia, the Omo Valley.”

◆From WCOV:

This was the original caption Sonja had along with this beautiful image.

When I work on preparing a post, I usually try to work with a photographer encouraging them to write the original, authentic caption, based on their feeling during the photographing experience. We started the conversation, and Sonja opened up about her feelings and impression during her visit to the Omo Valley.

“I was there only for one day, and did not have much time. But I am a little afraid that the tourism will change the lives of this tribe in the future.” Sonja fell in love with the beautiful people in the Omo Valley. And she opened up: “meeting the people was not easy, because of the language barrier.”…

While we talked about this specific photo, I learned that “the girl was not in her best mood at the time, and did not really want to be photographed. But the men, and the guide told her to do it, for the money.” Sonja told me that she is looking FOR THE WAYS TO GIVE BACK to the people she photographed, whichever way she can raise the funds: by selling her photos, or other fundraising idea, but she feels the need to return and to GIVE BACK 👏 I personally applaud Sonja for being real and honest.

It is beautiful that the photographers travel to the rural areas and learn, and share with others the beauty of the cultures… not only in the Omo Valley, but all around the world. Let us always remember to give back, let us always remember to make the remote communities want to welcome the tourist with the open hearts. It is our direct responsibility to photograph with respect and love in our hearts 🤍🖤🤎

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