Bagan Photo Shoot 2: The Firewood Seller

This post highlights our second photo shoot in Bagan, Myanmar, with the international award-winning photographer Maung Maung Bagan.  (The first photo shoot is described at Bagan Photo Shoot 1: I need a map.)

As we exited the car at our first location, young monk in tow, Maung Maung collected another model: an 80-year-old firewood salesman. As we were told several times, people in Myanmar want to remain active and useful for as long as they can and modeling jobs are quite welcome.

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Firewood Seller

Our model was willing to walk and model as directed by Maung Maung.  We couldn’t figure out whether he was a regular model for Maung Maung or just a quick study.  A very cheerful fellow, it wasn’t easy to capture his image without his smile.

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Firewood Seller

However, when we paid him at the end of his gig, he could not contain his happiness. (That’s Maung Maung Bagan in the left side of the picture.)

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Firewood Seller
For less than one hour’s work, we paid him 5000 Myanmar Kyat, which equals about $3.67 in US dollars (USD). For comparison, a journeyman lacquerware maker (who is a highly-skilled worker) in Myanmar earns about $4 USD a day.