Sep 05 2011
Somehow, we all want to make a difference, whether quietly or to great acclaim, for one individual or for thousands. The stories of differences being made in Cambodia are too numerous to count, but one stands out for being one in which anyone can participate while learning something new and appreciating the beauty of Cambodia.
Sang Kimleng is originally from Takeo province not far from Phnom Penh. He moved to Siem Reap in 2001 and, after a few years of hard work, was finally able to save up enough for his own tuk tuk. It was thanks to this that he met an unusual tourist from Canada, David Bibbing, an enthusiastic photographer.
Cambodia is a magnet for photographers from all over the world. Its history, bright beauty and the special character of the Cambodian people make it a challenging and rewarding place to shoot images that touch the soul. It was the same for David Bibbing and, as he shot, his young driver expressed an interest in his art.
David’s unusual response was to give Kimleng a few tips, then see him take a few shots. Those few photos were enough for David to spot Kimleng’s talent. He bought him a new camera and supported his training with a French professional photographer.
Since then, Kimleng has worked tirelessly to develop his art, while continuing to drive his tuk tuk. You’ll often find him parked outside the Hotel de la Paix looking for customers. He has spent innumerable hours slogging around the temples of Angkor to find the best locations and times for taking the best photographs. With this wealth of knowledge, Kimleng has developed his own photography tours of the area, great for anyone who is interested in getting some top shots of these notoriously hard to capture temples.
If you’re not up to that but would like to see some of his images, the best place to look is at the Art Deli on Alley West. Here you can browse Kimleng’s beautiful images on postcards and larger prints. His arresting glimpses of life in Cambodia are a perfect memento of your trip, and by choosing them you can make a contribution to the continuing growth of a special young artist.
If you’d like to see some of Kimleng’s images or contact him to organise a tour, check out his website: www.kimlengsang.com.
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