We were preparing for our 6th Photowalk of the series Tour’De’Karachi the next day when the lockdown in Karachi was officially announced due to the growing pandemic.

Fast forward to yesterday, 27th of September 2020, the pandemic is not over and still a high-risk factor across the world. Miraculously and luckily, in Pakistan, the novel coronavirus has not been that successful!

Thus the government eased on the lockdown. Streets are getting back to normal, and with the crucial precautions, we head to the streets for the postponed Photowalk too.

Needed Collaboration

Heritage Walk Karachi collaborated with Tour De Pakistan to educate photographers about the old classy but neglected structures somehow still standing in the city. They are unlike anything we see construct today.

These architects are unique, beautiful, handcrafted. They hold a vast history of the nation within their walls, in each brick, in each wooden panel, and every single iron bar. The tiniest detail crafted by the hands of countless unknown artists tells many tales to those who are there to listen.

Shaheen Nauman with Tour De Karachi on Photowalk

Ms. Shaheen Nauman

Ms. Shaheen Nauman of Heritage Walk Karachi led the way from one location to next while briefing the photographers around her. I must add that she has inspiring energy and unwavering love for the city.

I have not met her yet. She and I had a very small talk at the end of the session, but what I saw from the start of the walk till the end, I salute her love, passion, and efforts towards the city and the country. She is a treasure, as important as the treasure she is trying to take care of.

If you have not joined her tour yet, sign one up now through Heritage Walk Karachi. You will learn a lot just by being around her.

Photo by Kamran Ata from Click TV

The Photographers

I believe there were 80+ photographers on the walk. Their unique perspectives and their style of representing ordinary everyday objects turned into something we cannot get our eyes off.

The collective work from them becomes a beautiful display of creativity and testimony of the potential of street photography in Karachi.

Personal Challenges

I went to the streets with an entirely different set of plans that I have been cooking months before the announcement of this tour.

And I was facing extra challenges this time. I use smartphones for video and photos, which is challenging on its own. Previously on every tour and such walks, I have had at least one backup camera phone, usually two.

This time I had none, and the main camera phone, my aged Samsung Galaxy S7 edge, was already low on storage and the battery in the said handset is no longer what it used to be.

Thus I had to be extra selective. On top of that, the weather has not been friendly lately. The heat was not playing nice with the people nor with gadgets. I already lost one important smartphone to the heat recently, so the fear factor was quite dominating.

Yes! I managed to do my things. I cannot say I did those successfully, but the purpose was to do things I have not done previously. My trials affected my own regular results both in video and in candid shots I am known for!

I checked several boxes from my list to learn the level of my control and flaws on those topics and tricks.

The Sacrifices

The side-effect of doing my own thing was me not attending the informative briefings from Ms. Shaheen. I kept my distance on purpose, too, because I knew I would want to record her endlessly. But without my secondary camera, I would not be able to record her and the location she was talking about at the same time.

I did not have enough storage or battery to do that either. I would miss out on everything.

The Photos

I am sharing some of the pictures I took, but you can find the brilliant work of other photographers on Instagram under #tourdekarachi or #heritagewalkkhi or Tour’De’Pakistan and Heritage Walk Karachi accounts on Instagram and Facebook.

How to Join the Tour!

You have to have an interest in photography and a public Instagram account for joining Tour De Karachi Photowalk. Smartphone photographers are welcome, as well.

The Heritage Walk Karachi has no such conditions to join their tour to the memory lane with Ms. Shaheen.

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