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Sunday, January 2, 2000

The Taj

Visiting the Taj Mahal in 2005, I was looking at ways to capture a different perspective on this ancient monument known for its beautiful symmetry and flawless architecture. The first thing that strikes a visitor to the Taj is that it is larger, grander and more stunning in real life than any picture can convey.

The story of the Taj is well known (see wikipedia article); completed in the 1600's by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan in honor of his wife Mumtaz Mahal, it represents the epitome of Islamic architecture in India.

A wide-angle lens is a must to capture the grandeur and sheer majesty of the structure and every facet affords a different perspective that makes you question if all of them are of the same building. Here, for example, the dome of the Taj is invisible. Instead, the fine calligraphy and delicate engravings in the white marble stand out.

The architectural wonders don't stop at the Taj; also remarkable are the Great Gate and, as shown here, the adjoining mosque.

Lastly, a final perspective on the Taj -- here shown with the dome partially showing but with 2 of the 4 minarets. All photos were taken on slide film, scanned and converted to monochrome.

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