From the captivating landscapes of Leh to festivities of Benaras, emotions in portraits and sleek fashion photography, there is hardly a theme that is not covered in the 6th Annual Photography Exhibition by Raghu Rai Center for Photography. The exhibition features the works of 20 students who came from diverse backgrounds and had even more diverse interests, ranging from street, to fashion, art, landscapes, and contemporary dance styles.
One of the students, Aakanksha Agarwal, emphasised the importance of photography in the era of cellphones. “It is important to understand the depth of photography and know how you can make people remember a frame long after they have seen it, especially when everyone is capturing moments these days. That is something this institute teaches us.” Her frames capture the beauty of nature in Uttarakhand.
Another student, Divyanshu Das has explored landscapes and human emotions. “I believe it is important to capture feelings in any picture and photography is a great tool for the same.”
Speaking at the launch of the exhibition, ace photographer Raghu Rai said, “Every year a batch of students passes out and every student is special in their own way. Creative journey is something very personal and special. No matter what you teach, eventually it is each one to themselves. The hard work that one puts into exploring the world is something very personal and individualistic,” and added, “At this center we don’t try to make professionals out of them but we try to ignite the possibility of a creative journey in them, so that their creative expression gets ignited and tomorrow if you decide to do something other than photography, the base should be soild in exploring the world no matter what medium you choose.”
He stressed that the center is different in that it “sets a creative madness on fire. But nothing comes for free and hard work is the only way out.”
However, he agrees that things have changed vastly in the world of photography as it has moved towards a digital era. “After 50 years in photography, I still know that there is no magical finger or trick. No matter what one does, this remains a journey.”
He goes on to say that earlier things did not soley depend on the photographer as the process was a tedious one and the photo could go wrong at any step. “The digital era has provided such a platform that one can do wonders now. I am really happy with the way these works have come out, some of the prints are fabulous.”
Veteran photographer Avinash Pasricha inaugurated the event. “Lot of people are addicted to cellphone photography these days and it can even lead to great results but what I love are pictures that are first created in the mind. It is the time taken and the purpose behind taking that picture that counts. I have been an assignment photographer and have always photographed with a purpose. It changed the way one looks at frames. So this is my one advice to all — please create the pictures in your mind before you capture it.”
The exhibition is on at All India Fine Arts and Craft Society, 11 am to 7 pm