Monday, October 21, 2013

To be grateful for opportunities

More than a year or two ago, one of my friends met the great Gautam Rajadhyaksha ( He turned out to be one of the most wonderful and down-to-earth people. Having been one of the most accomplished photographers in India he was still approachable, friendly, and took a lot of care to make sure his guest felt comfortable. A very unusual thing in the industry considering how hard it is to meet any successful person for various reasons, whether it is security, or simply for the fact that there are thousands of people wanting to meet them.

My friend gave his phone number to me and suggested that it would be a great if I call him and meet him up to talk about photography and to take some advice from him or just connect with him because for one thing he is just a wonderful person. I found the idea of meeting him very intimidating apart from the fact that I didn't know what exactly I need to tell him or ask him (Bad excuses, I know). I kept procrastinating and before long I forgot about it.

More than a year later I was shocked to know he passed away. When destiny gives you an opportunity that might take you in a direction one has been dreaming of, one needs to at least see where it goes. Just sitting on it and being stuck in inaction never amounts to anything. Lesson learnt the hard way. It is perfectly OK if we were avoiding a person whose company might be harmful in some way. But a cardinal sin to not meet up a person who is inspirational and a great conversationist if nothing else.

And this opportunity to get to meet another human being for the first time, know someone better, or just catch up with an old friend does keep coming up in ways we would scarcely imagine.  It is in our hands whether we take up the adventure and see how we can make it rather than come up with excuses like being busy or having other utilitarian responsibilities which is really easy. Who doesn't have responsibilities and challenges? What we rarely realise is how short life can be and how things can suddenly change. I hope there are more chances to meet someone as inspiring and as knowledgeable. Hope there is another tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Why shoot in RAW format?

If you are a student of photography you must have heard a lot about the advantages of shooting in RAW format ( But it is in certain extreme conditions that you actually get to clearly see the advantages of shooting in RAW. Once you see the advantages you will fall in love with it. :) I have always wanted to have a series of pics that clearly demonstrate the advantages of shooting in RAW format and just the other day we found that image. Since I am shooting in RAW+JPEG, I get a JPEG version too of every photo.

The last image on the right is very similar to what I would have got if I had used a transparency film with a graduated neutral density (ND) filter or maybe a circular polarizing filter.