With its snow-capped mountains, lakes and glaciers, forests, jungles and exceptional flora, Bhutan offers a natural environment of rare diversity. In this unique setting, the Bhutanese have created a world of colours, shades and hues that infuse their architecture, their daily life and their religious festivals. Their costumes and fabrics are an integral part of this colourful world, which leaves no room for the monotonous and drab.
Bhutan is a paradise for photographers. As elsewhere in the Himalayas, the gentle light of spring or autumn, the heavy skies of summer and the first snows of winter provide an endless range of subjects, constantly changing in shape and colour. Here, photography truly becomes a form of witness, a way of revealing the beauty of the environment but also a means of discovering the cultural identity of the country. Bhutan's culture and traditions are immensely rich and offer a limitless source of inspiration. And last but not least, the photographer can capture the character traits of the people - their omnipresent smiles and serene faces clearly expressing their deep faith in the words and teachings of Buddha.
Perusing a website of photographs makes us realise that pictures often speak a thousand words. Instead of endless pages of text trying to describe or convince, photography summarises, synthesises and takes us to the heart of the matter. It also invites us to travel and fires our imagination. May this website enrich its readers as they discover a secret, unique and endearing country, a kingdom rich of many colours…
My Latest Shots
Reporter, writer and photographer
Fascinated by Tibetan civilisation and the traditions of the Roof of the World, Robert Dompnier has made more than 100 trips to the Himalayas, from Ladakh to the confines of Amdo, from Sikkim to Mount Kailash and from Mustang to the remotest corners of central Tibet and Kham. He published various articles before working on the book "Tibet, another world" in 1992 in collaboration with the journalist Pierre-Antoine Donnet.
A passion for Bhutan, the last Buddhist stronghold in the Himalayas, has led him to focus more especially on this country in the course of the past 20 years. In 1993, he was a member of the France 3 television crew during the filming of a documentary on Bhutan.
From 1996 to 2001, he has been working as a reporter for Tashi Delek, the in-flight magazine published for the Bhutanese airline Drukair. His travels and photographic work have appeared in several books including "Bhutan, Kingdom of the Dragon" a collection of photographs illustrating the many aspects of this colourful and lively kingdom (Editions Local Colour / Hong Kong, Timeless / New Delhi and Shambhala / Boston - Oct. 99) or "Bhutan, a timeless kingdom", the account of a journey that takes the reader to the heart of a strange, fascinating land (Editions Philippe Picquier / Paris - Feb. 2010). The book "Colours of Bhutan" is the third one about the kingdom published by the author (Jomo Publications / Thimphu - March 2011).
Robert Dompnier continues to work with various European magazines (Grands Reportages, Animan, Trek Magazine, Altaïr…) and French TV channels (France 2, France 5) on a wide range of subjects relating to Bhutan and the Himalayan world.