Friday, March 19, 2010

Sona Vanyan

Sona Vanyan, 40 years old

When you enter the yard of Sona Vanyan, you can smell her profession: lavash, cheese, baklava and many other things appreciated by the whole village.

Sona works from sunrise till sunset. She bakes, cooks, milks the cows, cleans house and yard, she does everything. She has had a hard life, but she is strong, smiles and says, “We don’t live very well, we are not rich, but we thank God for everything we have every day.”

She was 21 when she married, together the couple had a one-year-old son and she was two months pregnant with her daughter. After only one year of marriage her husband died. All alone at 22, she had just moved from Yeghegnadzor into her husband’s house in the village Getap. Since then she lives with her parents-in-law and raises her children alone.
Now she is 40. Her son who is now 19, is serving in the army in Sisian. She shows his picture with pride. Her daughter studies in Getap school and helps her bake lavash when she comes home from school. People from the village bring her flour and she bakes for them the delicious bread. That’s how she earns money.

She sleeps with her daughter on one end of the room, her parents-in-law on the other, separated with just a curtain. The room is dining room, living room and bedroom in one. The woodstove gives it a nice atmosphere, from the TV sounds traditional Armenian music. She serves us all Armenian riches, wine, pasturma, salad, fresh lavash, cheese, meat and eggs, nuts, sujukh and coffee - everything homemade and all natural!
She tells us that she and her daughter were going to a wedding the next day far north of Yerevan. She is preparing all her specialties to make those people as happy as she made us.
We ask her when they will be coming back she answers, “It depends if we like it there or not.” Sona lives in the day…


About this Tim Roth guy... said...

Emily! I'm loving all of these...are you using anything to help you light these photos? Looks great and your words enhance the experience. Keep it up!

Yeehaas said...

Hey Tim! These are all shot with natural light. For a few we used a "reflector" just a white sheet. I added a vignette with photoshop to some of them as well. I'm glad you are enjoying them! i had an incredible experience photographing and interviewing these women.