Kyle Weeks Palm Wine Collectors

“I photographed this series of eight portraits in 2015 on my return to the Kunene region of Namibia. A young Himba man named Wakarerera Tjondu, whom I had met earlier in 2014, led me through the palm groves and proudly introduced me to the palm tapping process for the first time.

The Himba people from this area have utilized Makalani palms for generations, passing down the knowledge and technique needed to carry out the process of obtaining the liquid. To begin the process, the collectors select a well-aged, sizable male palm. Its size and proximity to ground water will determine the amount of sap it produces. The most productive palms secrete over one hundred liters per tap. Once selected, the trunk is then pierced with stakes carved from harder wood. These act as steps upward toward the leaves and flower at the top.

Although the Makalani palm is a protected tree in Namibia and the tapping of palms a banned practice, the Himba firmly believe that it is their right to continue the tradition. They argue against Western law and instead follow ancient cultural traditions that respect these palms through their utilization. In turn, they promote their conservation on a local, cultural level.” – kyle Weeks

– Discover more of Kyle’s work here

Monthly Photo Contest

© Jorgen Johanson

THEME: TRAVEL Deadline: 31 August 2019

Competition Judge: STEVE MCCURRY

When traveling, the only way to discover the rhythm of life of a place is to experience it.

Each place we visit has its own particular look, ambiance, and atmosphere. Understanding its people, customs and traditions is vital and there’s always something unique to capture.

This summer we want to see images that communicate the life of a place in all its splendor, and trigger our memories. Whatever the subject may be: Street, Portrait, Landscape, Documentary... We want to share your journey, visually and intellectually - Let’s travel together!


1st Prize: $1000 · 2nd Prize: $600 · 3rd Prize: $400

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