Pugahm Myo: Thapinyu Pagoda
Here the Thapinyu Pagoda, the tallest structure at Pugahm Myo, rises toward a cloudy sky. Because early negatives were overly sensitive to blue, clouds were difficult to photograph. To evoke them and other atmospheric effects, Tripe retouched his negatives by applying pigment in thin layers, gradually building up density and form with highlights and shadows. Demonstrating his dexterity, he would bring his retouching up to the edge of a structure, defining its silhouette with the precision of an architectural draftsman.
Linnaeus Tripe (British, Devonport (Plymouth Dock) 1822–1902 Devonport)
With the invention of photography, the eighteenth-century British passion for recording exotic lands and studies of the peoples in India was given new impetus. The earliest photography on the continent dates from 1840 in Calcutta, the political center of British India. The technology for photography arrived in India quickly became popular among the local rulers-many of whom employed photographers at their courts-as well as the British who had come to make their fortunes in the colony. For both populations, the new medium replaced painting as the method for recording the local landscape, architecture, people, and important events.