Sunday, May 5, 2013

I have decided to discontinue this blog.
Instead I have split its contents to the following-

Photo[ec]centric - a photography and visual journalism resource blog
37BlinksLater - my photoblog
Communiqué - field notes and audio recordings

You can also follow me on -
facebook / twitter / linked-in / instagram / vimeo / soundcloud

Thursday, July 7, 2011

While I was shooting...

I could tell you about the kid whose favourite physics lesson was the one on light. I could also tell you about the same kid’s fascination with his father’s expensive camera. But the truth is I am not that kid. I stumbled onto photography as a cub reporter who smartly noticed that if he clicked pictures with his story he got paid more. Eventually I caught the shutterbug and now I am stuck with a rich man's passion and a poor man's profession. The by products of which are - ability to play voyeur and not being branded as a perv, a marginalized bank balance, inquisitive neighbors enquiring about my 'real job' and supportive parents with high blood pressure. 

Lacking formal photography education, I often 'discovered' some of the basics on my own. 
Thought of sharing some of them- 

1. Let there be Light : in Nov 2009, I was in Siem Reap, Cambodia to attend the Angkor Photo Workshop. My chosen story was TB in Cambodia. I soon found patients don't do much. So my usual repertoire of decisive moments was rendered useless. I decided to look at quite scenes and make them visually interesting. I started seeing light…  

2. Interpreting Scenes : As a wordsmith who started to shoot, my visuals often suffered from 'show-what-you write' syndrome. Images were always literal. While working on a story on mime artists, the surreal scenes enacted by the artists showed me a more artistic way. 

3. Photo Essay : Being the quintessential newspaper shooter, I was aware of only single images. After a workshop with Ed Kashi and Jonathan Torgovnik in 2009, I became aware of the wider vista of  visual reportage. This photo is the opening image of my first photo story on migrant workers at a vegetable wholesale market in Kolkata, India.

4. Overcoming Fears : Like most brought up in patriarchal Indian society, I was homophobic. But gender variants always interested me. Curiosity can kill cats but makes better journalists. So I decided to shoot a story on transgender men who dance in drag at weddings. Ignorance can be the basis of fear. Weeks spent with them shooting, interviewing and listening to their stories has made me a better person. 

5. Access and Intimacy : While documenting the survivors of child sexual abuse, I realized that access and intimacy are key elements in visual narrative. I feel privileged for the access given to me by my subjects on such an intimate issue. 

6. Making Mundane look Magical : Forced inside a car due to lack of rain-cover on a typical day of Kolkata monsoon, I looked out from inside. This is what I saw- my city being painted with water on glass.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


Random shots using my mobile cam while assisting my friend Poulomi Basu on her shoot. Check out her awsome project here.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Emergency Room Blues

Grandpa had an accident and bumped his head. Doc says he is fit as ever... 87 and going strong. :)