Ramayana

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Ramayana in Mudras by Kuchipudi exponents Raja and Radha Reddy 6

Click on the photograph above or the link below to view the ebook.

http://www.youblisher.com/p/982885-Ramayana/

Option to download as PDF also available.

Character Portrayal

Rama: Raja Reddy

Sita: Radha Reddy

Ahilya: Kaushalya Reddy

Ravana: Rashmi Vaidyalingam

Lakshmana: Tamal

Hanuman: Stans

Shurpanakha: Yamini Reddy

Jatayu: Bhavana Reddy

Kaikeyi/Garud: Shloka Vaidyalingam

Deer: Mahesh

Photography in Future ?

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Photography is witnessing a total overhaul, evolution or transformation are mild words to describe this phenomenon. Twenty first century brought digital technology in the lives of photographers but the acceptance was gradual, it almost took 6-7 years for traditional photographers to move from film to digital. Post processing became an integral part of image creation and has resulted in over dependence on editing softwares. What was possible with extensive lighting setups can easily be replicated with a few clicks on computer.

Shifting from film to digital faced a lot of resistance, the initial technology was not fully developed, there were image quality issues and most importantly photographers had invested heavily in the equipment and early digital cameras were expensive. By the time digital technology became stable, sensors started producing excellent images and camera prices came down, another technology revolution was in pipeline.

Camera in phone brought a whole new perspective in the field of photography, every one with phone could click pictures. Number of photographs clicked everyday now exceed the number of photographs clicked in first hundred years of introduction of photography. A good camera in a phone is a major selling point for the phone manufacturers, self portraits or selfies helped the cause of democratisation of photography.

At present, photography has become totally technology driven, lot of innovations are taking place both in hardware and software. Advanced sensors which are smaller in size combined with fast processors driven by intelligent software are able to produce brilliant results which are comparable to high end cameras. Mirrorless cameras have brought down the size of the camera and allowed shooting at higher fps (frames per second).

 

Few years back Lytro brought a whole new technology introducing a new way of focusing, it allows choosing a point of focus at the time of editing. It was supposed to be a game changer but didn’t really catch the fancy of photographers. Not considering the sales figures of the camera, the innovation is commendable. Changing focus points can alter the story in a photograph and bring out better imagination and creativity.

Dual lenses (not front & rear cameras) in phone were introduced in the recent past but to introduce 16 lenses in a compact phone, the Light L16,  is surely a stroke of genius. This opens up a lot of new possibilities as far as imaging is concerned, it is revolutionary. Over a period of time, considering the speed in which technology is changing, multiple lenses in a phone camera can become an essential feature in the future.

Besides the hardware improvements, photography is becoming more dependent on softwares, the algorithms. Manipulation of images in the camera itself before or after clicking is another area where immense progress is happening. Uploading the photographs on computer and sharing will be a thing of past soon. The smart devices with extra smart cameras will do the job perfectly from clicking, advanced editing to sharing and storing in the cloud.

Google’s New Alogrithm

Computational Zoom 

  

iPhone studio portraits

For a traditional photographer this could be a scary situation where technology is fast taking over the human skills but at the end of the day, no technology can ever replace the eye behind the camera. The art of visual story telling will never change in spite of all the technological advancements after all photography is more about sensitivity and aesthetics than the camera. As Ansel Adams had quoted ‘ You don’t take a photograph, you make it’ .

© Ravi Dhingra 2017

The Great Indian Cricket Factory 

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25th June 1983. This day history was created and it changed the future course of sports in India. Asian Games concluded in Delhi a few months back, the mega sports event was a successful one by any standards. The stadiums drew decent crowds and millions watched on television, some in colour too, colour TV was launched at the same time in India. And there was no cricket in the Games, yet there was an overall interest in all the sports, hockey being the front runner. PT Usha in athletics, Khazan Singh in swimming, Chand Ram winning the Gold in 20 km walk became household names. Cricket was another sport with good following but it surely wasn’t the only sport which Indians were glued on to.

And then India won the World Cup in cricket in 1983, the mindset of Indians changed with respect to sports. By the way Cricket is only played by a small number of countries, one can count on fingers, mostly colonies of British Empire, aka Commonwealth Countries. And to excel among 10 nations playing cricket in the World, the game got some undue importance. Cricket became religion and some players God. And in this whole process of finding new Gods, other sports were neglected. Everyone wanted to play cricket, suddenly there was money in the sport. Television coverage, brand endorsements etc drew the attention of younger generation and the gentlemen’s game turned glamorous. 
Though in the last few years, other sports are making an effort to bounce back, cricket in India has not taken a backseat. Innovations and improvisations in the game has made it fast paced, more glamorous and has made the players richer and richer. Cricketers are role models for majority of the children in the country and to become like them is a dream which they all kids have. The parents also see an opportunity in this, education is important but to make career in sports(Cricket) is no longer a taboo. This obsession has resulted in mushrooming of ‘Cricket Coaching Schools’ all across the country, a few started by ex-cricketers of repute. Cricket Academy is another business now, and a profitable one too considering the enthusiasm.

 Every child who join comes with an aspiration to wear the Indian Cricket Cap, to represent the country and in the process become rich and famous and  to become a poster boy. 

Though the path is not easy, there is stiff competition and nepotism, the risk is worth taking.

Padding up to face the challenges, the young shoulders have a long way to go.

The trap is laid, the nets are spread, a selected few from millions will break the shackles and will reach heights to touch the sky.

A Photographer- Before & After

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Before, After and Afterwards. Dreams VS Reality 




Before getting into photography 

Why photography?

– Photography is cool and photographers are most sought after people 

– Want to be in a creative field, enough of my boring job in engineering or finance.

– Want to express my thoughts, my feelings through my images

– Education is fine but photography will help in getting a cool job in a lifestyle magazine operating out of a plush office headed by a super cool boss, like Ranbir Kapoor landed one  in ‘Wake Up Sid

– Want to follow my passion like Farhan in the movie ‘3 Idiots’

– A 9-5 job is not my cup of tea

– Want to travel, see the world, something similar to Ranbir Kapoor in ‘Yeh Jawaani hai Deewani’

– Don’t want to be a part of the rat race 

– Fashion photography is so glamorous, will be surrounded by beautiful models. John Abraham looks amazing on the beach with his camera in the company of good looking girls in bikinis 

– Photography is an art 

After making photography as profession



– do I have to upgrade my equipment? Will this lens not work, the new one will cost a bomb

– Why should I buy the editing software, the pirated one is working perfectly on my computer 

– Don’t tell me that my existing computer can’t handle the latest software to edit the files created by my new equipment, need to upgrade 

– Now that I have the latest equipment, latest software and brand new computer, getting assignments will not be difficult 

– What? Lifestyle magazines work mostly with freelancers, no one told me this

– The experienced and senior photographers charge quite a lot, they also use the same equipment, I can also quote almost the same figure.

– Six months now and no assignment, must reduce my assignment charges to land some work

– No work still, can offer free services for a limited period or work on barter system, free lunch in lieu of food photography. Also it will give me experience and most importantly exposure.

– Shooting for online shopping portals, 300 products in a day, 5 angles each. Money is good but no creativity 

– Candid wedding photography seems like a happening thing, must give it a try. Have heard there is a lot of money in this. So what if involves working at odd hours and to be always on toes. And there are so many options here : pre-wedding, post-wedding like maternity, new born etc

– Even wedding photography has a lot of competition, don’t mind working with a team of photographers, doesn’t matter if it is not candid, at least getting a hang of it. Birthday parties & even other events photography will do.

– 10000 photos, shortlisting and editing, this will be minimum 4 days in front of computer without any break

– You don’t like the photographs? I worked so hard to get them, spent a lot of time on editing and you will not pay. This is not done, pay at least 50% to recover my costs.

An afterthought 

Now that I am in this profession for a year now, know everything related to it, time to get into teaching photography, let me start with a workshop or maybe a photo tour. 

PS:

This is a reality which many photographers are dealing with today, there is no intention to discourage people to chose photography as profession. Photography like any other field is highly competitive, require investment of money and time and has a gestation period to get returns. There is nothing like instant results, every day is a learning experience and persistence is the key to success. 
Jaane bhi do yaaron 

Show me the Kwan, show me the money

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A young photographer, not upcoming but reasonably established, got in touch to seek advice on a problem he is facing.

 The problem unfortunately is not faced by him alone , this actually haunts all the professional photographers or rather all the freelancers. It is a catch 22 situation faced by all in the fraternity, to work or not to.
And the cause of concern are  ‘Outstanding Payments
A typical situation-the assignment was completed long time back, there was either no advance or it was just a small percentage of the total assignment fee. The client is delaying, refusing to pay or simply not responding to the payment follow up calls, messages, or emails.
One very common reason for delay in payment could be operational in nature or temporary cash flow issues with the client. Patience is the key here as long as the client is responding and is apologetic of the delay. This can happen with best of the clients and should not really be a cause of worry.
Other than the operational delay, there could be many reasons for this attitude from the client, one reason being not satisfied with the quality of final output. This generally happens when the details of photo shoot are not discussed in detail before the actual shoot. The expectations of client are not met because of gaps in communication. The client always expect best quality output at minimum possible price, here it becomes the responsibility of the photographer to not to compromise on the quality or quantity after the amount of assignment charges has been fixed even if they are too low. All negotiations should take place before the photo shoot and final terms should be put in black and white, maybe through exchange of emails. Once the terms are finalised, there should not be any going back or any attempt to compromise on the quality of final output. 
Not only the terms of payment , other fine details of the assignment should also be discussed. Always advisable to ask the client to share reference images, just to understand what is going in the mind of client regarding the assignment. Most of the times, advertising agencies share the concept but in case of direct clients especially the first timers, chances of miscommunication are very high. Better to clear all the doubts before than justifying the photographs after the photo shoot. Client is always right and to be on the same wavelength is of utmost importance . In situations where client is refusing to pay because of quality issues, best option is to offer a reshoot at no extra cost. 

Not delivering the photographs on committed time can also be a reason for refusal to pay. This could be because of certain reasons which are beyond control and these can be explained to the client and maybe some kind of compromise can be arrived at. At times the delay is on account of over commitment by the photographer.Promising a date knowing very well that it is not possible to deliver is something which needs to be avoided at any cost. Always request for extra time, the client will be happy if delivered before time but the delays are never appreciated . On a lighter note, I came across a wedding photographer who delivered the final wedding album after 6 months of the marriage. After some days when he asked for balance payment, the album was returned to him as the couple had already filed for divorce.
Now comes the toughest part, there are no quality or time issues yet the client is refusing the payment or not responding to payment follow up calls. This is a matter of serious concern, many professional photographers have faced a similar situation and it becomes a very frustrating experience. Here the intentions of the client can be doubted.
Some clients have understood the working of photography industry knowing very well that currently the supply of photographers is more than the demand (not discussing the knowledge and experience of photographers here). The client also knows that though it is a small world, there there is no exchange of information among photography fraternity, there is no forum where experience of a ‘bad’ client is shared. The client is confident that if one photographer refuses, there will be two more to grab the assignment. A small advance payment, fraction of total committed amount will increase the confidence of hired photographer. And it is goodbye time after getting the photographs, seek newer pastures when there is fresh photography requirement.
One solution to this can be holding the final output till the time full payment is received. Low resolution photographs with watermark can be shared with the client to give an idea about the result of the photo shoot. Once the total payment is released, high resolution images can be delivered. Here, many a times, the client will try to act smart, will try to delay the payment citing frivolous reasons, chequebook finished, issues with netbanking etc but will keep on highlighting the urgency of photographs. The photographer has to stay firm here and refuse to part with the final images till payment is made. The client may threaten to stop future dealings but it is just to intimidate the photographer. Stay firm, deal calmly, be professional in your approach. Stick to payment terms decided before the photo shoot.

There is another possibility, the photographer having trust in the client or under pressure of urgency has already shared the final images without receiving the full payment. The client is using the photographs but no longer responding to any calls or mails, what can be done in a situation like this?  When all efforts to get the money out from the client fail, resort to following:
1. Technically the copyright of the photographs remain with the photographer, send a notice of copyright violation if the client is using the photographs. Copyright violation is a criminal offence under Indian Law.

2. Name & shame the client on social media (ideal situation is a forum of photographers to deal with such issues but in absence of one),  making other people aware about the client is likely to ruffle some feathers. Here the client may threaten to spoil the reputation of the photographer but once the photographs have been used, people will see and understand the real story. 
Even after resorting to these measures, the chances of recovery are quite bleak in such situations but as a service to the fellow photographers sharing information will ensure that the particular client is blacklisted. If the terms are in writing, legal action may help but it is a long drawn and slow process. 
Consider yourself lucky if you get the payment , otherwise take it as a lesson learnt the hard and expensive way.
© All Rights Reserved Ravi Dhingra 

Busting the megapixels myth

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An informative article  by Rajiv Makhni busting the myth of megapixels in a digital cameras.

Busting the megapixel myth once and for all  

Even the size of each pixel matter, here the big boys- DSLRs score much better. Because of the larger sensor size, the pixel size is also big as compared to a smartphone cameras. 

Bigger pixel = Better picture 
Highlighting megapixels is more of a marketing gimmick by the camera phone industry, the quality of the image depends on many other factors as mentioned in the article 

Raghu Rai- Lifetime Achievement Award

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Heartiest congratulations to Sh. Raghu Rai for winning the lifetime achievement award in photography at the 6th National Photography Awards. 

Awards Cermony

Raghu Rai in conversation #1

Raghu Rai in conversation  #2

Raghu Rai on his 5 iconic photographs

 

The camera did not take the photograph, the photographer made it

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The camera did not take the photograph, the photographer made it.

A thought provoking video on changing trends in photography but in the end what matters is the photograph not the camera which is used.

Click on the link to view the video:

It’s not the camera, it’s the photographer