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I Photographed Women In North Korea To Show That Beauty Is Everywhere
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Photography, Travel6 years ago

I Photographed Women In North Korea To Show That Beauty Is Everywhere

For more than two years, I have been doing portrait photography, going around the world with my backpack and my camera. In this journey, I photograph beautiful women surrounded by their environment. My travel photo project is called “The Atlas Of Beauty” and is about our beautiful world’s diversity shown through portraits of women. My last destination was a special one: North Korea.

North Korean women are not familiar with global trends, but this doesn’t mean that they are not preoccupied with their looks. They are, definitely!

The women of the Hermit Kingdom have a passion for high heels and usually wear classic outfits, always accompanied by a pin, on the chest, representing one of the country’s leaders. During celebrations and other special occasions, they wear traditional colorful outfits.

My goal is to continue and take photos of the beauty around the world, showing that our charm is in our differences.

More info: Facebook | Instagram

She was working in a hotel in Sinuiju

Uniforms are very common in North Korea

One of the wide boulevards of Pyongyang

Library in Pyongyang

A singer before her show, in Sinuiju

Bicycles are the most popular vehicle

She was working in a train

On the streets of Wonsan City

A waitress in Pyongyang

Subway station in Pyongyang

Textile factory in Pyongyang

During celebration or other special occasions women wear traditional outfits

Fishing is very popular in Wonsan

People wear pins with the two former great leaders

During the National Day huge mass dances are organized in big cities

Student in Pyongyang

In Sinuiju, a city bordering China

Umbrellas are popular for sun blocking

She was working in a hotel in Sinuiju

Playing instruments is a popular activity

Gates of Koryo Museum in Kaesong

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Hey pandas, what do you think?
NorwegianTravelers
Community Member
6 years ago

Powerful photos and touching photos!

ChristianW
Community Member
6 years ago

Most of them look somewhat sad/intimidated. Considering that tourists in N. Korea have to be accompanied by two caretakers (North Korean security) to prevent them from looking the wrong way or saying something inappropriate this is not surprising. Just imagine someone photographing you while that guy is flanked by agents of your highly repressive (you wouldn´t describe it as repressive but you would be very concerned not to offend them in any way) government.

DariaB
Community Member
6 years ago

Actually, they look either careful (and of course they do!) and some of them even kinda proud (take this whichever way you want it, but I see it as a positive thing - they live where they live and under the conditions they have, but a self-dignity is kept intact and I wish we respected N. Korean citizens a little more). Others are genuinely happy because they're given a chance to shine, and because they're friendly by nature. But you're totally right about the restrictions and guidances. Tourists can only make photos of places where they are told "here you can take a picture". Before you leave, you camera/phone gets checked once again, just it case. If you're caught having a forbidden picture, if you're lucky, you can get away with an astronomous punishment fee, but prison is said to be a common sentence for such a thing too. I'm not exaggerating here, btw, just reporting about the experience of someone who decided to share their story.

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NuniksGayatri
Community Member
6 years ago

A real natural beauty. Without heavy make up and the famous duck face.

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NorwegianTravelers
Community Member
6 years ago

Powerful photos and touching photos!

ChristianW
Community Member
6 years ago

Most of them look somewhat sad/intimidated. Considering that tourists in N. Korea have to be accompanied by two caretakers (North Korean security) to prevent them from looking the wrong way or saying something inappropriate this is not surprising. Just imagine someone photographing you while that guy is flanked by agents of your highly repressive (you wouldn´t describe it as repressive but you would be very concerned not to offend them in any way) government.

DariaB
Community Member
6 years ago

Actually, they look either careful (and of course they do!) and some of them even kinda proud (take this whichever way you want it, but I see it as a positive thing - they live where they live and under the conditions they have, but a self-dignity is kept intact and I wish we respected N. Korean citizens a little more). Others are genuinely happy because they're given a chance to shine, and because they're friendly by nature. But you're totally right about the restrictions and guidances. Tourists can only make photos of places where they are told "here you can take a picture". Before you leave, you camera/phone gets checked once again, just it case. If you're caught having a forbidden picture, if you're lucky, you can get away with an astronomous punishment fee, but prison is said to be a common sentence for such a thing too. I'm not exaggerating here, btw, just reporting about the experience of someone who decided to share their story.

Load More Replies...
NuniksGayatri
Community Member
6 years ago

A real natural beauty. Without heavy make up and the famous duck face.

Load More Comments
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