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Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Kshanaprabhaa Access: In Numbers...

Here are some data points about the access and usage of, right out of Google Analytics, which is in place since May 2010 for the blog. Although I was planing to dig deeper and showcase better visualizations, lack of time and the urge to get this done before the dawn of 2015 makes me share pretty much the raw data:

1. The browser breakup is delightful, for the developer in me :)

2. The overall access numbers are heading in the right direction I suppose...

3. The top ten most accessed posts (they are also available as links on the right hand side widget under the name "Popular Posts":

4. Country-wise page view counts. No surprises here...

5. Major Sources of Traffic to the blog:

1. Google India
2. Google Worldwide
3. Facebook
4. Twitter
5. Facebook Mobile
6. Kshanaprabhaa
7. Google UK
8. Google Australia

6. Top 10 tags used on the blog (slightly curated to remove repeats):

1. Temple
2. History
3. Hoysala
4. Travel
5. Photography
6. Carnatic Music
7. Zimbabwe Cricket
8. Poetry
9. Hindustani Music
10. Cartoon

Saturday, 27 December 2014

My paintings, before the turn of the millennium...

You start feeling a little strange when you realize you have not done something that was very close to your heart, for a long time. The last time I did a bit of drawing / sketching / painting was about a decade and a half back. All the paintings I did back then were mostly without much professional guidance, based on whatever I could pick up by observing things around me, while the rich interest in sketching and painting within the family also probably helped me get excited about it. I had spent hours and hours behind it as I was growing up, and makes me wonder now, where did all that patience go? I can't even imagine now, focusing long hours like that in perfecting a stroke, mixing a colour, and finishing a painting.

Anyway, here's an insight into a hobby that took backseat long ago (all these were done before I was 15, I think), and makes many around me (and even myself, sometimes ) feel it could have become so much better if I had progressed further on this one...

1. A Ganapati I had sketched in 1997 got a face lift and completion in 2007, thanks to Microsoft Paint

2. A sage blessing his pupils

3. Young Lava and Kusha capturing the horse from the Ashwamedha Yagna performed by Rama

4. Colourful parakeets

5. Akbar and Birbal - The Amar Chitra Katha effect

6. A sketch of Dattatreya Ramachandra Bendre, one of the greatest Kannada poets of the last century and Jnanapeetha awardee - made while a class was going on :)

7. "Balamangala", the kids magazine, had its effects too..

8. One of the earliest attempts at painting, in 1988 - got an approval of "very good" from my then school principal :)

9. A little different...

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Sights and Scenes from God's Own Country: Part 2

Continuing from the first part of the pictures from Kerala, here are more - flora and fauna:

The rare Changeable Hawk-Eagle / Crested Hawk-Eagle at the Nelliampathi forests

The Green Bee-eater at Pothundy Dam

You can't even plan for a picture like this. Swans in a drizzle, drinking out of a temporary waterhole at Munnar

Another typical Kerala image - coconut trees and a perfect reflection in the Kumarakom backwaters

Nothing gold can stay - a golden sunset at Alleppey

The grand Anantapadmanabha Temple and the serenity of its Kalyani at Tiruvanantapuram

A pigeon tries to find its food on the beaches of Tiruvanantapuram

Inviting to meditate. A lone tree surrounded by the calm waters of the Pothundy Dam

As a turtle peeps above the water at the Palakkad Fort, a dragonfly uses its nose as a temporary landing pad

An enchanting little red flower at Nemmara

Friday, 19 December 2014

Carnatic Ragas: A bit of fun...

Got inspired by this blog post and a twitter discussion that was going on around it, and  thought of a picture quiz on Ragas of Carnatic Music. here goes. And, it is all in fun, and no offence meant :).

So, take a look at the image, identify the ragas (requires knowledge of Kannada, Sanskrit and English languages) ...

1. Pretty straightforward one here:

2. Well, a bit philosophical too...

3. And a bright one:

4. Another straightforward one, or is it?

5. This can get tough...

6. And, last but not the least...

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Sights and Scenes from God's Own Country: Part 1

Here are some photos from my multiple visits to different parts of Kerala over the years. Part 1 is in and around Palakkad.

A view of the Pothundy Dam from the road near Nemmara

A view of the Western Ghats from near Nemmara 

Macaques perched on a tree near Seethargund

Pearl-like flow of the Seethargund Waterfalls

A typical green scene from the Nelliampathi Range

An old home, greenery and a lot of swans - a farm at Nelliampathi hill station

Bright sunny day and a calm stream flanked with trees all around at Nelliampathi

Kerala Defined: Lush Greenery of the Tea Plantations

A small water body, lots of greenery, a spot one can easily miss en route to Nelliampathi

Large paragraphs won't suffice to describe this tranquility at the Pothundy Dam 

Sunday, 30 November 2014

Enchanting Sights from Haridwar, Hrishikesh, Renukaji, Delhi - Part 3

This is the third and concluding part, continuing on from the second part of images from my trip to Haridwar, Hrishikesh, RenukaJi and Delhi:

An endless row of lush green trees leading up to the India Gate at Delhi

The Rastrapati Bhavan, in the typical Delhi haze at the stroke of noon.

The Amar Jawan Jyoti

The majestic India Gate

A side view of the India Gate that I liked more than the front view

Another iconic Delhi monument, the Red Fort

The Bala Sundari Temple at Trilokpur, Himachal Pradesh

A view of the shores of Ganga from Lakshman Jhula, Hrishikesh

The skies of Hrishikesh through Lakshman Jhula

Mystic evening at Hrishikesh as seen from Ram Jhula