Just for Smiles: Painted Elephants

Painted elephant

Painted elephant, close up of head, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India. Bruno Morandi/Robert Harding/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: rhphotos126589

Elephants are gorgeous (and smile-inducing) creatures in their own right – when they’re not angrily charging the video camera guy – but add in some gorgeous colors and painted flowers, and you come up with a fun set of pictures that should brighten anyone’s Monday.

As part of the Holi – the Hindu Festival of Colors to celebrate the arrival of spring – the Elephant Festival has become a large tradition.  In Jaipur, Rajasthan, India, each year elephants are paraded, bejeweled, and painted. The end result is a fabulous transformation from a grey behemoth to a wonderful palette of colors and designs.

Along with a beauty contest to crown the best-dressed elephant (they even paint their toenails!), there are other activities that the pachyderms take part in. One is a tug of war: elephant vs many, many humans. There are also races and even can have a game of elephant polo.

We thought these pictures were fun so we’re happy to share them with you. Check out more pictures of the beautifully decorated elephants back at Newscom.

Painted elephant

Painted elephant, Pushkar, Rajasthan state, India, Asia. Marco Simoni/Robert Harding/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: rhphotos029416

Close-up of a painted elephant

Close-up of a painted elephant, used for transporting tourists, Amber Palace, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India, Asia. Jeremy Bright/Robert Harding/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: rhphotos004876

Decorated elephant

Decorated elephant, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India, Asia. Bruno Morandi/Robert Harding/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: rhphotos098789

Elephant Parade

India, Jaipur, Jal Mahal Lake Palace, Elephant Parade. Dallas and John Heaton Stock Connection Worldwide/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: scphotos054133

Painted and decorated elephant

Asia, India, Rajasthan, Jaipur, Elephant Festival, Painted and decorated elephant kneels for judging at the Elephant Festival. Philip Kramer / DanitaDelimont.com "Danita Delimont Photography"/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: ddpphotos047095

elephant festival for Holi

Foreign tourists atop elephants throw colored powder to celebrate the "Holi" Hindu festival of colors, during an elephant festival in Jaipur, capital of India's desert state of Rajasthan, March 17, 2003. Holi is celebrated all over India, marking the start of spring. KAMAL KISHORE/REUTERS/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: rtrphotos762273

Elephant Festival in Jaipur

A mahout stands bsides his decorated elephant during a competition of the Elephant Festival in Jaipur, March 17, 2003. For more than 20 years, every year near the day of Holi, the Hindu festival of colors, elephants compete in competitions like the elephant race or a tug-of-war between an elephant and people. KAMAL KISHORE/REUTERS/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: rtrphotos762270

tug-of-war competition against an elephant

Foreign tourists take part in tug-of-war competition against an elephant during the Elephant Festival in Jaipur, capital of India's desert state of Rajasthan March 6, 2004. For more than 20 years, every year near on the eve of Holi, the Hindu festival of colors, elephants compete in competitions like the elephant race or a tug-of-war between an elephant and people in the city. KAMAL KISHORE/REUTERS/Newscom. Find it on Newscom.com: rtrlive615469

You may be interested in some of these other posts from FocalPoint:

Amazing 3D Chalk Drawings

Around the World: Arches National Park

Pictures of the Week: National Puppy Day

Freestyle Snowmobiling

 

 

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