This week’s photo challenge is guest hosted by Aaron Joel Santos. Culture. Culture is a bit of a loaded word. In…

Photo courtesy of Aaron Joel Santos

Photo courtesy of Aaron Joel Santos

Pouring water on Buddha statues at Shwedagon in Yangon, Myanmar. Photo courtesy of Aaron Joel Santos.

This week’s photo challenge is guest hosted by Aaron Joel Santos.

Culture. Culture is a bit of a loaded word. In a photograph, it can embody everything and nothing. So where do we draw the line? Shopping culture, hippy culture, Asian culture, Thai culture, ancient culture, and on and on. These phrases have different meanings. For me, as a working travel photographer, being able to show culture, in all of its various guises, is crucial to the success of an image.

There are obvious elements that go into making a great photograph: perspective, color, contrast, subject matter, and lighting, to name a few. But for this challenge, go for that little something extra — that piece of the image that makes a viewer want to see more — to delve deeper into the culture you’re photographing. I’ve always said that I want my photographs to make people curious. So that is your assignment here: inspire curiosity with your photography.

More shots to inspire you:

Share a photo that means culture to you!

We’re looking forward to seeing your interpretation of culture — whether you capture a snapshot from your travels or discover something or some place new and different close to home. (We’re looking for one image for this challenge, but if you want to use a gallery like the one above, we won’t stop you!)

Tip: Don’t be afraid to get close to the people you’re shooting. Honest intentions and a smile go a long way. Showing an interest in people and their cultures is the greatest form of flattery, so don’t be shy. You’ll be surprised at how open and inviting most people are.

Aaron Joel SantosAaron Joel Santos is a freelance photographer living in Hanoi, Vietnam. He works across Southeast Asia for clients such as the International Herald Tribune, the Wall Street Journal, Travel + Leisure Southeast Asia, Ink Publishing, Smithsonian magazine, and more. On his many travels, he’s forgotten to pack nearly everything but his camera. In addition to checking out his website,, you can follow him on Twitter @AaronJoelSantos or on Facebook.


New to The Daily Post? Whether you’re a beginner or a professional, you’re invited to get involved in our Weekly Photo Challenge to help you meet your blogging goals and give you another way to take part in Post a Day / Post a Week. Everyone is welcome to participate, even if your blog isn’t about photography.

Here’s how it works:

1. Each week, we’ll provide a theme for creative inspiration. You take photographs based on your interpretation of the theme, and post them on your blog (a new post!) anytime before the following Friday when the next photo theme will be announced.

2. To make it easy for others to check out your photos, title your blog post “Weekly Photo Challenge: (theme of the week)” and be sure to use the “postaday″ tag.

3. Subscribe to The Daily Post so that you don’t miss out on weekly challenge announcements. Sign up via the email subscription link in the sidebar or RSS.

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    1. Sally, you should send another link, this one is directly on your editing page and we obviously can’t access to the pictures! 😉 which is such a shame giving the beauties you’ve gotten us addicted to!


  1. What are more iconic of American culture than hot dogs and diners? George’s Coney Island Hot Dogs in Worcester, Massachusetts has been part of local New England culture for more than 75 years and typifies a particular dining experience that we all know and love. Rich and poor, old an young, everyone comes and eats at George’s. It’s still under the same family’s ownership. Welcome to American culture, the culture I know and love best.


      1. I could find where to comment so I will put my comment here.
        Bull fighting is a barbaric passtime and I believe almost out lawed in Spain, I wonder what pople would say if we stuck spears into a giant panda while waving a flag of the WWF in its face, or what about kitten tossing were you have to catch them on sharpened sticks, oh I kno how about sheep poking, get a sharp pitchfork and see who can kill the most sheep while chasing the petrified animal round a ring……


      2. hi no it was directed at the sport, I couldn’t find the comment area for the image so I put it as close to sorry if any offence was caused 😀


  2. Dammit! I should have waited with my today’s post. Namely, I discovered the wonderful culture of selfies. Shoot. I guess I have to take some more then and make another post out of it.


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