Varanasi – India’s religious capital
"Varanasi is one of the most ancient cities of learning. This was a place where hundreds of enlightened beings lived at a time. In every street, you had an enlightened being to meet." - Sadhguru   The city of Varanasi is full of colours. Religious spirits run high and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s pictures are everywhere. Well it is his own constituency. The city is famous for its colourful Ganga ghats, chaotic but fascinating streets where people from all over the world visit for tourism, religious and personal reasons. Varanasi, also known as Kashi and Benaras continues to be one of Hinduism’s holy cities. Pilgrims come from all over the world to the ghats hoping to wash away the sins of their lifetime. The city also offers moksha to those who die here and hence Varanasi is considered an auspicious place to die. The two ghats – Harishchandra and Manikarnika are the cremation ghats. According to Hindu mythology, Lord Shiva along with Parvati came to Kashi before Vishnu to grant him his wish. Vishnu dug a kund (well) on the bank of Ganga for the bath of the couple. When Lord Shiva was bathing a Mani (Jewel) from his earring fell […]
Photography, love and exhibition
Four years back when I got my DSLR, I had never thought I will fall in love with photography. My parents gifted me this beautiful gadget as a wedding present on behalf of my aunt who passed away when I was really young. My aunt was single and loved spending all her money on her nephews and nieces. She believed in enjoying life and pursuing your dreams and wanted each one of us to do the same. She left small portions of her savings for all her nieces and nephews before going away to another world. My parents did the smart thing of investing that money and thus a few months before marriage, I received a “we need to talk” text. I panicked a bit initially. What is it that they wanted to talk to me about? Did they found out something about my husband that I didn’t know? Or are they going to have one of those “grown up” talks that parents normally do before marriage? Oh I know what it is, someone must have told my mother it’s not good for the would-be bride to go out in the sun. She will not look fresh on her wedding […]
21 May 2015 in Camera gossip
How to zoom burst?
What’s photography without experimenting? The best way to learn photography is by experimenting and playing around with settings. Even the best tutorials and photography courses will teach you how to use these settings but in order to maximize you need to be super comfortable with your gadget. I decided to experiment with zoombursts, a special technique achieved by changing the focal length of the lens while the camera is exposing. A zoomburst image is one where you will see blurred streaks emanating from every pixel of your photograps Let me explain it in a very simple fashion: – First things first, set up your camera on a sturdy tripod so that you can avoid camera shakes. – Use a zoom lens – lenses like 18-55mm, 70-300mm work the best. A 50mm lens or a fixed-length focal lens will not work. – Keep a fairly low shutter speed and a small aperture. The reason you need a slow shutter speed is because you need to zoom your lens all the way (and then back too if you like) while the shitter is open. – Use manual or shutter priority mode to set exposure value that matches to how fast you can […]
18 Nov 2014 in Camera gossip
La Ville De L’amour
Paris is officially my favorite city in the world. There are just so many things about this city that has attracted me to it. From those narrow streets to roadside cafes, beautiful architecture, lovely touristy places, colourful and yummy macaroons, delicious crepes and so much more. I had covered all the touristy things in my last two trips to Paris. From Eiffel Tower to Avenue des Champs–lyse, leading to the beautiful Arc de Triomphe, the Louvre, the Sacr-Cur Basilica, the Montmartre walk and so much more. It was a packed trip with a long To-do list that I kept checking as I went along. But I always felt I missed the essence of Paris in these two trips as I ended up spending more time in rushing through all the touristy things. And thus I decided to make one more trip to Paris to see the city on foot and capture what I couldn’t in the past two trips. The city boasts grand architecture and lovely narrow streets that have small roadside cafes serving tea, coffee and a range of cakes. The city is extremely well connected by its metro system but dont be scared of walking through these narrow […]
Silky waterfalls
Have you seen pictures of ocean waves, waterfalls or streams with silky effects? It’s not tough and something you can learn very quickly. All you need is the right camera settings and steady hands. Remember to balance light in your camera. You want a slow shutter speed but you also don’t want too much light so you would need to keep your aperture and your ISO low. With a fairly slow shutter speed you would either need to take a tripod or keep your camera really steady. It’s not possible to carry your tripod everywhere so find a rock or a steady base and leave your camera there. And finally, be careful of your surroundings for slippery rocks or too much water stream entering your lenses. Use a polariser to control light. Good luck!
16 Sep 2014 in Camera gossip
Supermoon-ing
After having missed last two supermoons this year I was determined to capture this one but the biggest challenge was to find the right spot and the right settings for your camera. London has never been short of beautiful locations but to know where the moon will be at what time is a tough one so I decided to save on energy and stick to my comfort area – a fairly decent location close to my house. I knew the location well, could set up without any hassle and could concentrate more on settings. I had read several blogs on how to capture the moon but when it comes to photography there is no right or wrong. At the end of the day it’s your own instinct that works. The book might ask you to keep a higher f number but you might not want the image to look very bright and blurry so experiment away with f stops. Remember to keep your ISO low to avoid unwanted noise. And remember NOT to put your camera to night time exposure because you’ll probably need daytime settings to counter the bright light. It can be a bit confusing initially but we […]
11 Sep 2014 in Photo gossip
Portrait Moments
Here’s a glimpse into one of the portrait photo shoots I recently did. Portraits are tricky because at the end of it your client should be happy with the results. There are lots of factors – lighting, posture, clarity, background and so on. However, the most important one according to me is making your subject comfortable and not too conscious of the camera attention. In this case I was chatting with Kia all along trying to keep her mind off the camera. Any feedback welcome!
03 Sep 2014 in Fashion
Night photography mantra
Ever wondered how some photographers manage to get the perfect reflection of their subject in water? Till I learnt some techniques I always wondered how they do that. There must be some magic or some post production involved. But its an extremely simple technique and one I will share with you today. Rememberten ground rulesbefore you decide to do night photography: Choose your location well– It’s quite handy to know beforehand where you will be placing the camera, what angle will you be shooting from since it generally tends to be a bit dark and knowing your location well can save time and get you up and running quicker. A tripod is a MUST – Always remember to carry your tripod with you for a couple of reasons. One, you have more freedom to adjust your settings thus avoiding any sort of camera shake and get much better results. Two, you can turn around and look at other settings too while the camera does its job. Carry a remote/Self-timer– Night photography has its own set of gears and a remote is very important. So for instance when you decide to leave your shutter on for 10 seconds, a simple camera shake […]
21 Aug 2014 in Camera gossip, Photo gossip
Candid moments
One of the toughest forms of photography is capturing human expressions. Its not a still landscape or an age-old architecture that you could get your settings right, point and shoot. Because if you do that with candid photography, more often than not you will have one you wouldn’t even want to look at. I am still learning the techniques of candid photography and the biggest hurdle is taking a picture without making your subject conscious. Most of the time the subject tends to get conscious and you have a picture with a few tensed faces. That’s not what you want. I tried different techniques on people I know so I started with my younger sister who is quite a diva herself. I asked her to enjoy a swing ride without caring that I was taking pictures and she did. I tried shooting from different angles and kept it all to black and white. I have realised portraits look wonderful in monochrome. I stuck to manual mode which allowed me to shoot with different apertures and I kept the ISO to minimum in order to avoid any noise in the photo. Let me know what you think of these? I think […]
19 Aug 2014 in Photo gossip
Vande Mataram
India is celebrating the 68th year of its independence and as an Indian living far away from home this is truly a patriotic moment. Growing up in India we always got used to watching the flag hoisting by the Indian Prime Minister followed by a speech. At school you would always get sweets and sing national anthem the day before independence day. All these memories come rushing back when you are far away and thus I thought going down the memory lane with some pictures I had taken during my last few India trips. These images are of places that are close to my heart and were taken at various times of the day. They range from the India Gate in Delhi to the Gateway of India in Mumbai, The Taj Palace and the view of the sea from its coffee shop and finally the Jal Mahal in Udaipur. I hope you enjoy watching them as much as I did clicking them. In the end, wishing all my Indian friends a happy independence day. May the country continue to prosper!
14 Aug 2014 in Photo gossip