Let there be colour!

There’s always something crazy happening in London. Last weekend, in the concrete sea of Battersea Park, thousands of people clad in white gathered to turn themselves into rainbows.

Holi Colour Festival Panorama

Holi Colour festival 2013 London-16

The event was inspired by the religious festival Holi, where Hindus gather together in February/March to celebrate the coming of spring and throw masses of coloured powder at each other. The festival at Battersea exported the idea of coloured powder, cast aside the relgious motivations, then added alcohol, a stage and DJs for good measure. The result? A great big messy party!

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Thousands of clean-clothed people gathered to Battersea to attend the festival.

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It didn’t take long for the powder to be unleashed!

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Every hour festival goers  were encouraged to throw their powder en-mass. As they did, clouds of colour blocked out the sunlight, and participants were caked from head to toe in layers of powder.

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Rainbowed people emerged from the aftermath.

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And as the dust settled, the party continued…

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When the day drew to a close the underground became populated with a colourful array of people!

Holi Colour festival 2013 London-30

176 thoughts on “Let there be colour!

  1. Wow, these are some amazing and inspiring images. I woke up on the wrong side of the kitchen this morning (I mean, I did stumble out of bed, and I was just fine at that point, but then I ran in to some teenager shenanigans and BAM! my day just went to hell in a bucket!) Your post was just what I needed to get my day back on track!

  2. Great photos! When I visited India and was very disappointed to miss Holi – I didn’t know it was celebrated in the UK as well.

  3. What stunning pictures! I would absolutely love to experience a Holi One festival – looks like you had an absolute blast :)

  4. Awesome photos! Tell you the truth, your version of Holi is what I would prefer to celebrate compared to what we do in India. Holi is supposed to be a festival of colors and that is exactly what I see in these pictures, the colors are beautifully accentuated in each image.

    I don’t know what we do in India anymore, it kind of gets rough, you know, some idiots throwing eggs and rotten tomatoes… It gets disgusting and is not even related to colors!! LOL

    Anyways, love the images! :)

    1. That’s very interesting… It would seem that we glamourise the Indian way of doing things a little. Does it perhaps depend on what region you are in to what people do?

      1. Very much so… and not just regions, also on what kind of event…

        When it is just me and my family it is a small celebration with the morning pooja, and applying just a dab of color on each others, cheeks…

        Or in a neighborhood, when multiple families join together and celebrate involving a bit more of getting drenched, I know my dad turns into a kid and dumps buckets of colored water on unsuspecting victims…

        Or the modern version, where clubbers head to an open air rave in the morning, with DJ’s blaring dance music and colors flying everywhere, and people soaking wet, so horribly discolored, you cannot tell them apart… :)

        Overall the outcome of it all (except for the first scenario (just my family)) is that people get a strange baboon-like appearance with red ears, red faces, red arms…

        When I was a kid, my mum used to rub a ton of oil all over my body on Holi morning in order to prevent the color from sticking :)

        One other thing I remember doing is cutting out the bottom of a large plastic carry bag (the ones you get in the grocery stores), and wearing them as vests under our shirts.. LOL :P

        I guess you had to go bat shit crazy to have some holi fun… :P

  5. These are amazing photos of what looks like an awesomely fun day!
    I once witnessed the after-math of a colour-festival party (in South Africa) and can honestly say that I would love to attend one… one day.

  6. I’m doing a “Color Run” this weekend. I’m a little disappointed now, though. The run doesn’t include booze like the festival…

  7. indian community is huge in england. but i didn’t know they celebrate it too in london. wow, kinda a mess colourful party out there and would love to witness it one day when i come to london again!

  8. Here in Sacramento, California we did the “ColorRun” on August 3rd. It didn’t include alcohol but it did include a 5K run. We ran clad in all white and even added white tutus! It was a great deal of fun.

    I love your pictures. They capture the fun, the light and the color so wonderfully. I’ll bet you had as much fun during your color celebration as we did at ours!

    1. I put mine inside a clear bag (with holes for the lens and straps) then taped it up like crazy! It worked remarkably well; the lens was spotless, the camera had a fine layer of powder in places.. Hope you have fun :)

  9. Wow! Great pictures you have there. May I know what model of camera you are using? My friend had bought a Nikon (I forgot the model & spec etc), looked professional used camera. But the pics did not come so good as yours.

      1. Yes, i absolutely agree with you. I brows through some of your pics Cobbled lanes and sweeping sands, they are really professional, artistic, and capture the true feeling as if i was there :D thumbs up and keep it up!

  10. Colors of LIFE. Beautiful colors.. beautiful people… beautiful pictures. Shouldn’t this what life be about all over the world? Fun, laughter, color and joy? Thanks for sharing.

  11. I recently visited a similar event in Germany. Being an Indian I feel proud to see people all over the world relishing this beautiful Holi festival. I loved your photos. Thanks a lot for sharing them.

  12. Top photos dude. My friend told me about this after I saw a pic of him covered in colour too. I may well have to check it out next year!

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