Silhouettes and Shadows

Bodh Gaya, India

 The Sun never knew how wonderful it was
until it fell on the wall of a building.
Louis Kahn, Architect

quoted in forward of In Praise of Shadows,  Junichiro Tanizaki

Mud Mosque, Mali

Look round and round upon this bare bleak plain,
and see even here, upon a winter’s day,
how beautiful the shadows are.

  Alas!  It is the nature of their kind to be so.
The loveliest things in life are but shadows,
and they come and go, and change and fade away…

– Charles Dickens


Find beauty not only in the thing itself but in the pattern of the shadows,
the light and dark which that thing provides.
– Junichiro Tanizaki

Kabul, Afghanistan

We are but dust and shadow.
– Horace

Preah Khan, Cambodia

You can only come to the morning through the shadows.
– J.R. R. Tolkien





Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow.
– T. S. Eliot


Character is like a tree and reputation like a shadow.
The shadow is what we think of it.  The tree is the real thing.
– Abraham Lincoln

New York

Kandze, Tibet


Kabul, Afghanistan




Hindu Kush Mountains, Afghanistan

Ancient Catacombs, Rome, Italy

A shadow on the wall
boughs stirred by the noonday wind
that’s enough earth
and for the eye
enough celestial participation.
– Gottfried Benn
Translated from the German by Michael Hofmann

71 Responses to “Silhouettes and Shadows”

  1. Reblogged this on Rddhi and commented:

  2. […] Blog zeigt einen tollen Querschnitt seines Schaffens. Ich selbst bin über seinen Beitrag “Silhouettes and Shadows” gestolpert, der mich umgehauen hat. Schaut euch den Blog – oder auch nur besagten […]

  3. thanks for the mind blowing pictures, which are going to my heart. Kiri

  4. Farah Mahbub Says:

    A classic subject to approach and shoot, be the photographer an amateur or professional.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    Wow wow and wow!!!

    Thanx for your work!


  6. This is music for my ears. Outstanding like always.

  7. I simply want to mention I am just new to weblog and really savored this blog. Almost certainly I’m likely to bookmark your blog . You surely come with impressive stories. With thanks for sharing with us your blog.

  8. Thank you so much for sharing your incredible insights and photographs. I am learning so much about life and photography from your work. Thank you again.

    • Debashis Mukherjee Says:

      Yes I agree I am also learning a lot of photography from my idol Sir Maccury

  9. Amazing world of contrast.

    Thanks for posting

  10. I’m particularly taken with the photo of the soldiers walking in the snow in Kashmir, and the old fence…. wonderful lines, beautiful composition.

  11. lovely play of light n elements Steve. Great story

  12. Sombra e Luz
    Se para ti o que importa é a luz,
    Para mim são as sombras que valem,
    Se para ti só a luz é pureza,
    É a escuridão quem me purifica.
    Luz e sombra são facetas de um mesmo princípio
    É a luz quem projeta as sombras
    São as sombras que definem a luz…
    (autor desconhecido)
    abraços do Brazil e obrigado por postar a belissima foto do Rio

  13. niasinphoto Says:

    amazing theme shot in various places. Great job!

  14. Beautiful inspiring work as always. You always manage to describe powerful narratives in your photographs – something to truly aspire to.

  15. Arnel DeLeon Says:

    Amazing works of Lights.

  16. Such a treat to view your work. Each image is loaded with beauty and emotion. Thank you.

  17. Cassandra Murray Says:

    Stunning and emotional as always

  18. Mary Aggelou Says:

    I cannot say anything,the words are smaller than images,congratulations Steve,you are my inspiration always,I love every shot of you,be well,give us more perfect pictures!!!!!!!!!!

  19. J’aime beaucoup votre travail et vous en félicite.!!!…serge

  20. Debashis Mukherjee Says:


  21. sooo good. Brazil shot is unreal

  22. Anonymous Says:


  23. I think I will just sell the camera then! Stunning, as we have come to expect. I just don’t know how you do it.

  24. Anonymous Says:

    as always, awe-inspiring!

  25. As always, great series of photos.

    I was awe-struck when I first went through your gallery and similar feeling always creeps back when I look at your work!

    Thanks for being an inspiration and sharing your work!😀

  26. Amazing work of Art as usual….:)

  27. Impressive as always.. =) ..i’ve always loved photographing shadows but in black in white. your photos makes me want to shoot shadows in color now.

  28. IARA Schaeffer Says:

    I love shadows, it is like another reality living by side you…
    Impressive photos!

  29. carry53 Says:


  30. your photos reflect my dreams.. I can not explain how I feel, you are different Steve..

  31. Beautiful images and inspiring theme. Thank you.

  32. A lot of great shots here, as always.

  33. gijmaj Says:


  34. Sencillamente maravillosas

  35. Love your pictures and your trips !


  36. Amazing Clicks ! Pretty sure there is no Photographers like you who making the most artistic photographs out of the most candid moments !!

  37. I enjoy these posts very much having travelled a lot of the world!

  38. How could we have failed to see all these! Like the power of sadness these pictures tenderly reconcile us to intimations of our existence which are hard to bear.

  39. Anonymous Says:

    beautiful images – thank you for sharing

  40. Anonymous Says:


  41. Good morning, Mr Curry…I really like them…If I had to choose a beautiful one I would choose the train station…You really got the atmosphere….But if I have to choose the one that moved me I would choose the one of the woman in Kabul…”We are but dust and shadow”.. She is herself a shadow..
    Thanks a lot again!.

  42. Anonymous Says:

    you have such an eye to “cut” you photos, so they seem more a picture rather than a mere shot: the construction of the elements, the perspective, the balance of the colours, just like the Renaissance painters did. It looks so fortuitous, it never is.
    love it.

  43. What a wonderful work of art. Take my bow sir.

  44. Thank you for your sublime and inspirational images, and wonderful words. Railway station in India, runner in Brazil, and prayer in New York are my favourites.

  45. Mayo Martinez Says:

    Hi Mr McCurry,
    Love it… Gorgeous shots and magical mood!!

  46. Amazing!! Italy and Korea my favourite this time.
    Thank you

  47. Anonymous Says:

    Wow. Thanks again, Steve, for the insight, the beauty, the imagination.

  48. Every time I look at your images I am blown away with your consistency over the years. Your images are so good year after year after year. Like a fine wine.

  49. SMITHA Says:

    Just Fabulous!!

  50. How can you do that ? Incredible work, Mr.Steve.

  51. You are exceptional

  52. dino morissette Says:


  53. Only you can do this ! Great work Steve !

  54. Y desde ya que conservo la foto de “La chica Afgana ” 1984. Y la foto cuando fue hallada en 2002 tambièn en Pakistàn (Peshawar) La considero una foto extraordinaria. Mis cariños.

  55. Admiro muchisimo su producciòn Fotogràfica ,tengo en mi poder revistas con fotografìas suyas. Siempre me gustò la Fotografìa y cuando pueda voy a ir a aprender. Lo saludo con todo mi respeto y cariño.

  56. Payel Bhattacharya Says:

    You captivate me!

  57. Hudson Gontijo Soares Says:

    lindo….sempre lindo…estas sao fotografias…que nos inspiram…que nos faz entender o valor da raça humana…

  58. Hudson Gontijo Soares Says:


  59. Anonymous Says:

    When ever I start to loose faith, I turn to you, and you inspire me…….always

  60. I always look forward to seeing your pictures! You really inspire me to keep photographing what I see.

  61. At the dimming of this day…I send you my Gratitude, I …breathe..

  62. so inspiring!!

  63. Art and a sense of humour are an irresistible combination.

  64. rajeev Sasidharan Says:

    mind blowing and brilliant from the bottom of my heart

  65. Always inspiring, Steve…such powerful images and beautiful words to accompany them. Thank you….

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