• Kaisern Chen

Russia, uncovered!

Updated: a day ago

Winston Churchill once said that;

"Russia is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma."


I can't say he was either right or wrong, but it is the kind of idea most people have with Russia and Russians, as far as I know, until 2015.


Russia is a true wonderland which has almost 1/8 of landmass on earth, and if we discount Antartica, Russia would be about 1/6 of landmass on earth, so if Russia were to have the average share of the population on earth it would have 1.2 billion people, but instead, it has only 144.5 million.


So I think, a country that has almost the entire north half of Eurasian continent, much of its territory is located above the 50th parallel, where subarctic and arctic weather is prevalent and with so little population in comparison to its landmass, the Russian must have a big and warm heart to live on their land! I am not wrong, thanks to my many dear Russian friends, they are indeed with a big and warm heart which makes me go back again and again.


This blog is a collection of images I took in Russia since 2015, in random order, for my love and tribute over Russia.


To begin, let me borrow what Valentina Tereshkova (the first woman to have flown in space in 1963) once said;


"If women can be railroad workers in Russia, why can't they fly in space?"


I have to say that is the real Russian attitude, woman and man.


Also, to Yury Chernyh and Oleg Ivanov, two great Russian who has so much love of their country and land and my dearest friend of the highest respect, show me the real Russia, started in Russian villages.


Just like Ernest Pool, the winner of first Pulitzer Prize in Fiction, and a great journalist with his sympathetic first-hand reportage of revolutionary Russia during and immediately after the Revolution of 1905 ad Revolution of 1917, quote;


"All the real things in Russia are done in the villages."


As most of my pictures in Russia.




Epiphany rites - This man takes a dip in the icy river water of Volga to celebrate Epiphany, a major holiday in Orthodox Christianity marking the birth and baptism of Jesus.

Epiphany rites, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home.

~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe



Home - Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast. April 2016

Home - Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast April 2016

Home, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast September 2017

family room, Levoberezhnoye, Yaroslavl Oblast December 7, 2019

Boys and girls, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast April 2016

Russin teens, Rybinsk suburbs, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018


The man!

Yury Chernyh, Moscow December 2016

Farmer, Kukoboyskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast October 2018

The landscape of the Russian soul corresponds with the landscape of Russia.

~ Nikolai Berdyaev



Family crossing frozen Volga River, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast. January 2017

Shopping, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast September 2017

Washing up in the banya is like being born again.

~ Russian proverb



Russian Banya, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast September 2017

The Holy Night on the frozen Volga River, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast January 18/19, 2017

Kukoboyskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast October 2018

Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Alexander, the Gypsy, Lake Nero, Rostov the Great, Yaroslavl Oblast. April 2016

Armenian farmer in Rostov the Great, Yaroslavl Oblast April 2016

Getting ready... Moscow, December 2016

Chacha, a clear and strong home brew Georgian pomace brandy also called "vine vodka".


Georgian Chacha, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast May 2015

I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol taken out of me.

~ Winston Churchill



Sergey, Rodionovo, Tver Oblast September 2017

village life, Iskra Oktyabrya, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

after work, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast October 2010

The spirit break, Bezhetsk, Tver Oblast September 2017

to the heroes, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2019

We lost because we told ourselves we lost.

~ Leo Tolstoy



Study - Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast April 2016

Autumn days, the Volga River - Yaroslavl City, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Вероника Буталина, musician on the cruise, Volga River, Yaroslavl City, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Kira Grebneva, Moscow, February 2019

Tanya Rodnaya, St. Petersburg, August 2018

Metalsmith, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast October 2018

Sons of metalsmith, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast September 2017

early winter days, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast December 2019

"My favorite journey is looking out the window."

~ Edward Gorey


Cathedral of Christ the Saviour on the far end, Moscow, Russia February 2019

Construction workers, Kamennikovokiy, Yaroslavl Oblast, October 2018

“I didn't want to kiss you goodbye — that was the trouble — I wanted to kiss you good night — and there's a lot of difference.”

~ Ernest Hemingway



Love in Moscow - by the bank of Moscow River, Moscow, Russia February 2019

Love in Moscow, August 2018

Love in Moscow, February 2019

Love in St. Petersburg August 2018

Love in St. Petersburg August 2018

Love in Yaroslavl City, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Early winter day, Kirillo-Belozersky Monastery, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2019

Transfiguration Church, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast, Russia February 2019

In the kingdom of hope, there is no winter.

~ Russia Proverb




keep running, Moscow December 2016

Winter days, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Winter days, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Fatherhood, Uglich, Yaroslavl Oblast, Russia February 2019

Moscow, December 2016

Winter days, Rybinsk suburbs, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Leo, the dog - Vereteyskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast October 2018

Taking leak, Rybinsk suburbs, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

freedom, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Nothing in this world compares to the comfort and security of having someone just hold your hand.

~ Richelle E. Goodrich



Hand in hand, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Hand in hand, Kamenniki, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Farm works, Kremenevskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast February, 2019

Snow and cold weather will not stop the Russian, even the small boys!


Village lives, Kremenevskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast February, 2019

Village life, Kremenevskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Village life, Iskra-Oktyabrya, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

The local farmers and their goats, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast December 2019

school kids, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast, February 2019

People don't notice whether it's winter or summer when they're happy.

~ Anton Chekhov



game on the frozen pond, Levoberezhnoye, Yaroslavl Oblast, December 2019

Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Winter days, Poshekhonye, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Local girl and her Siberian Husky Yaroslavl City Park of Culture and Leisure, Yaroslavl City, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Winter days, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Village farmer and his dog, Iskra-Oktyabrya, Rybinsk Yaroslavl August 2018

Moscow August 2018

Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Man and his dog, Rybinsk Suburbs, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Kirrilov, Vologda Oblast December 2019

Winter days, Uglich, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

crossing the frozen Volga River, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Valentina, Goritsa village, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2019

Moments after the capture of the last image, we were invited into Valentina's house and served each of us hot tea. Valentina, 89, sat by the window in good spirit!


Valentina, Goritsa village, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2019

"There is more light than can be seen through a window." ~ Russian proverb


Village life, grand-daughter, her grand-father and the family dog! Rybinsk suburb, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Village life, Rybinsk suburb, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

village life, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2019

Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Village girl, Iskra-Oktyabrya, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Village boy and his bicycle, Iskra-Oktyabrya, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

The bookkeeper, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast December 2019

painters on the frozen Volga River, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Freedom on the Volga River, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2018

Fisherman on the Volga River, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2018

Moscow February 2019

Palace Square, St. Petersburg August 2018

Village life, Bezhetsk, Tver Oblast September 2017

early winter days, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2019

Village farmer, Iskra-Oktyabrya, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

What a pleasure to photograph around St. Petersburg with two great friends, and great photographers, the iconic Steve McCurry and Yury Chernyh (also the greatest host I could ever ask for), and a bit of whiskey. ~ August 2018



With the great Steve McCurry, Yury, and a bit of whiskey, St. Petersburg August 2018

Kazan Cathedral or Kazanskiy Kafedralniy Sobor, St. Petersburg August 2018

Vera Chaika, my Russia nanny! Rybinsk suburb, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Veronika Butalina (Вероника Буталина), Yaroslavl City, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Village life, Poshekhonye-Volodarsk, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast December 2019

winter play, Uglich, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Crossing frozen Volga River, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

winter days, Myshkin Town, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

St. Petersburg August 2018

In the past two hundred years, Russian people have seen changes of regimes and leaders, sometimes prefer one over another.


However, into the quiet hours after dinner, Alexander Pushkin owns their heart and soul, which has never changed.


The Pushkin time after dinner with Anna the hostess, Sergey and Vera, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Fisherman on the Volga River, Myshkin, Yaroslavl Oblast September 2017

Farmer and his cat, Rodionovo, Tver Oblast September 2017

Confrontation, Kamenniki, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Sergei and the mad cat, Poshekhonye, Yaroslavl Oblast December 2019

Cats' play, Bezhetsk, Tver Oblast September 2017

Farm life, Martynovo, Yaroslavl Oblast September 2017

farmer, Iskra Oktyabrya, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Roksana, a café attendent at Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast September 2017

Diana Wapuna, Strawberry Cafe, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Viktoria, Hotel Astoria, St. Petersburg August 2018

Nastya Kudryavtsrva, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

Maria Lebedeva, at Krista NPO HQ Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast August 2018

Moscow December 2016

The farmer, Prigorodnove, Yaroslavl Oblast October 2018

Church of the Resurrection, Kostroma, Kostroma Oblast October 2018

Kirillo-Belozersky Monastery, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2, 2019

Farmer, Privolzhskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2018

Village grocery shop, Martynovskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2018

cat walk, Prozorovskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2018

Village life, Prozorovskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2018

Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast February 2019

the ferry crossing the Volga River in early winter, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2019

early winter, Levoberezhnoye, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2019

village life, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast November 2019

breaking ice... Poshekhonye, Yaroslavl Oblast December 1, 2019

Yury, one of the best Russian, Kirillo-Belozersky Monastery, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2, 2019

fisherman on the frozen Lake Siverskoye, Kirillo-Belozersky Monastery, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2, 2019

fisherman on the iced Lake Siverskoye, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2019

You can't not to fall in love with Russia if you are a photographer!

You can't not to fall in love with Russian if you are a man!



Yury on the forzen Lake Siverskoye, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 3, 2019

early winter days, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 3, 2019

early winter evening, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2, 2019

Sergei, Goritsa Village, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 2019

Holy Trinity Church and cathedral Christ Resurrection at the Goritsy Monastery of Resurrection, Goritsa, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 4, 2019

Holy Trinity Church and cathedral Christ Resurrection at the Goritsy Monastery of Resurrection - Goritsa Village, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 4, 2019

Mother Tavifa, Holy Trinity Church and cathedral Christ Resurrection at the Goritsy Monastery of Resurrection - Goritsa Village, Kirillov, Vologda Oblast December 4, 2019

bus stop, Goritsa, Vologda Oblast December 4, 2019

weekend fun, Nazarovskoye, Yaroslavl Oblast December 7, 2019

biker on the frozen Volga River, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017

Levoberezhnoye, Yaroslavl Oblast December 7, 2019

Levoberezhnoye, Yaroslavl Oblast December 7, 2019

Nikita and Matvey, Levoberezhnoye, Yaroslavl Oblast December 8, 2019

early morning at the Transfiguration Cathedral, Rybinsk, Yaroslavl Oblast December 8, 2019

early winter days, Tutayev, Yaroslavl Oblast December 8, 2019

Sunset time, Bezhetsky, Tver Oblast September 2017

St. Isaac's Cathedral State Museum-Memorial, St. Petersburg May 2015

Napping, St. Petersburg August 2018

Early winter, Rybinsk suburbs, Yaroslavl Oblast January 2017




A lucky man can stumble upon a treasure while an unlucky one can't even find a mushroom.

~ Russian proverb