How Photography Changed My Life: Pooja Ambilkar, Finance Professional, Pune.

An introduction about who you are, what you do for a living and how you got into photography. 

Hello Everyone,

For the starters, I am not sure of an inspiring story, but I am super excited to share my thoughts and little experience that I have of Photography. I hope I can reach that out to you.

My love for pictures starts way back since I could even remember. I am a huge fan of Art and Artists in general. Art melts my heart.

I am a deep thinker in nature and my brain works both in numbers and in Art.

Photography is a huge part of me because it is the best way I am able to express myself. I always keep saying “I wish I could click pictures through my eyes, since everywhere I see is a photo opportunity and beauty which needs to be captured for lifetime.

Photography for me is poetry, story and soul!

How was your first experience with your camera?

I bought my camera back in October 2014 so I could have high quality images and to fulfil my hobby wishes, I had no idea what I was getting into.

Trying my hands on my DSLR for the first time gave me Goosebumps. The fact that I could now turn my imagination into reality blew my mind and I immediately shared the first few clicks on Facebook. I was totally bought by all the wonderful things my camera could do and decided this is how I will be sharing my story with everyone – through my Lens.

What were the things you did to get better at photography?

Frankly speaking I understood the techniques of photography very late compared to the time I bought my DSLR.

I research a lot online and then move out on the streets to practice it.

Attending the workshop with Creative Pad Photography was the time when all my questions about photography were answered and all my anxiety fell into place. Kush makes Photography sound so easy – I am sure we will all agree.

I also follow the best pages suggested by Kush, they’re all eye openers.

World is full of best photographers, there cannot be just one! I admire everyone, But I am a big fan of Chris Burkard (Facebook, Instagram) and I follow him religiously.

Your favourite shot of yours up till now and its details

This is my favorite shot Freedom.

Details :

F/10

ISO-200

Exposure : 1/1600

Focal length : 120mm

What is your favourite type of photography?

I love to capture People and Nature the most. People interest me and nature is Surreal.

The rawness on the Streets inspire me too.

 

What is the equipment that you use?

  • Nikon D3300
  • Nikkor 18-55 lens
  • Nikkor 55-200 Lens
  • Memory Cards : 8GB, 16GB, 32 GB

How has photography changed your life?

Photography gives me a purpose. It has changed the way I look at life. I am at utmost Peace when I am creating pictures.

I want to influence positive thoughts in the world and photography is helping me achieve that.

Other shots that you would like to show

What are your future aspirations in terms of photography?

I want to be a Portrait Photographer.

I want to capture what people can’t speak about, to create photographs from Art, People, Nature and Music.

Through Photography I want to spread positivity, send good messages and bring my imagination into reality. That’s my dream.

Anything else you would like to add 

Absolutely!

One Quote that always inspire me to keep moving ahead :

“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.” – Henri Cartier- Bresson

For me, “Photography is how you can use the light in the best possible way and convert your imagination into reality.”

I have a profile dedicated profile on Instagram called Another Dream Photography, do check it out and follow if you like me J

How Photography Changed My Life: Suhas Jogdeo, Insurance Professional, Pune.

An introduction about who you are, what you do for a living and how you got into photography. 

Hello Clickmasters,

Meet Suhas Jogdeo, an Insurance professional and an ardent Angling & PG Enthusiast.

Suhas was introduced to photography in his school days, by his cousin, working then as a Part-time Finisher, in a studio. When Suhas visited the darkroom of that studio for the first time, he was affrighted and was churned up with the impregnable olfaction of chemicals in white trays. Negatives were hung, no light was allowed inside. The nausea still prevails.

B&W was the only choice. Colour photography came later. A shaving blade was used for pp or finishing. To reach the viewfinder, the photographer had to shove his head into a dusty black cloth. That looked entertaining.

The first camera he owned, was Kodak, in 1981, then Yashika Electra 135. Then he bought Nikon FM with a standard prime & a Vivitar zoom, in 1983.

He pastes ‘L’ sign on his cams.

How was your first experience with your camera?

Leave aside expertise, neither knowledge nor info was handy; nor was it required either, as the first camera was just view & shoot. However, perhaps ‘ my own viewfinder ’ helped me isolate myself from the crowd..

Those were the ‘film role days’. Kodak roles, with ASA ratings like 400, 100, etc, were popular and expensive; and printing costs were prohibitive. Deleting images was out of question.

What were the things you did to get better at photography?

Took membership of The British Council Library and read plenty of books on photography. Google was not even dreamt of during those days.

I still remember the book ‘The World’s Best Photographs’. All the photos therein, were B&W. This book spurred my exuberance in photography.

Post DSLR, hunted for photography lessons on web, Google & Youtube, subscribed to Digital Photography Secrets, Digital Photography School, etc

And most importantly … proved myself to be lucky enough to have been associated with Cool Guroo Kush Sharma aka CGKS !

Your favourite shot of yours up till now and its details

Nikon D5300   f/5.6   1/125 sec   ISO 200

 

What is your favourite type of photography?

Candid – Unlike the other times, getting caught unaware, is fun also. The more fun is in catching the unaware. At occasions, it could be humorous, annoying, surprising, pleasing, embarrassing. It could make or break the relationships as well. Inter alia, it is most satisfying. To me, in non-candid or posed photography, people become conscious, delusory, kitschy. They hide their genuineness, wear a burka. Celebrities lead the gang.

Nature & Wildlife – I believe, all Nature & Wildlife photographs are candid; and hence, one has to be equipped, opportunistic, uncompromising.

Portrait – A yet another ‘self’ish ballgame. The logic is very simple. If you have attended a wedding or an event, and you happen to see its photo album, you linger over a leaf, in which you are seen.

By and large, Portrait photography, unfortunately, is commonly correlated to human beings, rather human faces. That is not the case. A portrait of a lion or a squirrel display the same qualities as of a human race.

But, one thing for sure, a nice portrait of a person brings the subject very close to the photographer. My acuity in Portrait Photography facilitated three Writers and a renowned Poet to publicly announce me to be their Official Photographer. No wonder then, why celebrities value photographers. Sateesh Paknikar and Gautam Rajyadhyaksha are my role models in this sector.

Macro photography – just OMG ! Challenging your everything. It stretches one’s patience to the extreme ends. Lot of technicalities, awkward body movements, limitations, lighting conditions, composition, framing, focusing for sharpness, uncertainties, everything could be against you. And still you have to capture the nervures from the eye of the smallest creature. That is your achievement. It is extremely satisfying, once you are done up with.

All the above give me immense pleasure and satisfaction.

Frankly, wide angle / landscape photography has not yet been seriously attempted by me. Still, it is in the back of my mind. Credit goes to Sunil Damle.

f/5.6   1/25   ISO 2000

f/22   1/2000   ISO 1280 (theme photography)

What is the equipment that you use?

Nikon D5300 with 50 mm prime, 18-140 & 55-300 Nikon & 4 extension rings. (The 50 mm is underutilized.) A heavy duty Benro tripod. three memory cards of 32 gb each, 2 of 16 gb & 8 gb, 4 of 4 gb & 2 batteries. A polythene bag is always available into my kit, for use in case of unpredictable rain & storm. Also, the moist absorbent bags. Of course, my laptop for viewing, pp & posting.

How has photography changed your life?

Photography taught me patience, persistency, practice, experimenting. Incidentally, these qualities helped me in Dramatics as well. For photography, I indulge in exploring new locations, talking to strangers, street-smartness, petty adventures, introspection & self-retrospection.

Prior to taking up photography, I was much lazier than today, impatient, inconsistent; and so on.

Also, Photography took me into the laps of the mother nature, explained the importance of meditation, how to meditate, how to enjoy the becalm.

Photography made numerous moments of my life, lively, e.g. covering, for 2 consecutive years, the 3-month life of a Bulbul pair & their 3 chicks – from selecting a safe place for weaving a nest to see the independent kids flying away. Photography also offered me opportunities to capture the glimpses of 18-odd joint family members’ memorable moments. All these things rejuvenate me to the fullest extent.

Last, but not the least, with the grace of Freddie, my daughter also has landed in the wonderland of photography. Freddie handed over his spare Nikon D5200 to my daughter, so that she could attend Kush’s Basic Photography Workshop; and she was happy to do it.

Yet another thing … Fishing & Photography go hand in hand; and I have my soul deeply sunk in to the both !

Other shots that you would like to show

f/5.6   1/800   ISO 3600

My garden gives me lot of opportunities, on a daily … no … on an hourly basis, to explore my camera and the garden as well. This birdie was captured in a summer, when lot many used to visit my garden to quench their thirst.

f/4.5   1/800   ISO 5000

The trio of Sunil, Freddie and I never give up. Freddie got caught by me in one of such sessions in Konkan.

f/5.6   1/640   ISO 800

Macro photography is hypnotising.  This is one of the crazy creatures from my garden. This tiny chap was trying to escape, but I proved to be smarter.

What are your future aspirations in terms of photography?

Would Luv to work with NatGeo!!

So far, they have adopted two of my photographs on their website. They run a prize winning “Daily Click Contest’, to start with. I am sure, a day will be there for me, when I will come out with flying colours in it. Dying hard for that.

Media / Press photography – Very challenging. It requires content writing skills also. This can cause enmity against the mighty as well.

Now a days, many newspapers have developed their own apps for their readers to become digital journalists. They also appeal their readers to email photographs of common public interests, news items having potentials to penetrate social awareness, social interests. At this juncture, enough light has been thrown on what journalists are undergoing.

Videography and video editing … hmmm !

Anything else you would like to add 

Upon buying my first DSLR, I read the camera manual umpteen times, plenty of visits to Google & Youtube, lot of net searches, but all in vain. I was scared of even touching my DSLR. Tried to change some settings, but the results were awful, disappointing, frustrating. Auto mode became my favourite, but then, ‘ why DSLR ? ‘ was a trillion sterling question for me.

Used to sit with my DSLR in front, staring at it for lot of time,  every day, wondering, why did I buy a DSLR at all ?

An attempt to google for an effective photography training programme/s in Pune & Mumbai dumped me at the feet of the Cool Guroo Kush. At a very early age, his knowledge in photography, style of teaching, patience, his dedication towards the students, mentoring, support,  … everything has changed my photography.

At occasions, Kush appears to be an alien, as Guroos with such qualities are becoming rarest of the rare !

Once the 2 training sessions are over, he doesn’t throw his students in to the world. He has created a wonderful Facebook platform, Creative Pad Photography Members, where we can exhibit our work, discuss the issues, seek guidance, express views, et all.

Moreover, the CPP has gifted me awesome photographer friends like Freddie Desai & Sunil Damle. Many strangers ask us, the 3 Musketeers, if we are class /schoolmates. What else we could say, but “Of course” , albeit we know each other for not more than 3 years !

A suggestion : Like painting exhibitions periodical theme-based exhibitions of printed photographs by CPP members could be held at different locations, to start with, in Pune.

CGKS, I take this opportunity to record my sense of gratitude towards how much you care for us. Without your appeal ‘to write’ I won’t have bothered to peep into the past and attempt, what I think about photography, about you, about camera, about Sunil & Freddie, what are my future aspirations in terms of photography, how photography has changed my life … Please keep it up !

How Photography Changed My Life: Ankit Goyal, Student, Pune.

An introduction about who you are, what you do for a living and how you got into photography. 

Hello,  to all the photography enthusiasts   . I am Ankit  Goyal , a beginner photographer and I am currently pursuing 12th Commerce at Ness Wadia College, Pune  .

I developed a urge of  clicking pictures right , since I was 10 , I used a  Sony Cybershot at that time and loved almost every image I had clicked  , but I got serious about photography after my trip to Ranthambore in April 2016 , where I saw many people were using those huge lenses and cameras , I also wanted to give it a try , so after that trip , I got my DSLR and after joining Creative Pad Photography’s workshop in June 2016, which I consider to be the best decision of my life so far , that’s when I realized that photography is more than just clicking a shutter .

How was your first experience with your camera?

I purchased my DSLR in May 2016   , my first experience was really painful  , starting right from trying to attach the lenses , then figuring out the functions . I remember , the first  shot I clicked with my camera turned out to be extremely overexposed , and suddenly I had  thoughts like “ Is something wrong with my camera?” and all the curiosity of exploring this new gadget .

I remember on the first day of the workshop  , I was quite nervous and intimated by the fact that I may not be able to cope up with the other students because of my age and was quite skeptical about starting a bit too early for my age , but all those thoughts were gone by the time we reached to the end of the first day of the workshop , thanks to my mentor Kush , who explained every single thing about photography in the simplest means possible .

The best part about the workshop is that it Is totally based on practical understanding and application of photography.

What were the things you did to get better at photography?

I watched hundreds of Youtube videos regarding differents aspects and explored photography in every mean possible. I read many articles about photography written by Kush , followed many best photography pages in the world  . And the most important part , I practiced everything I saw on the internet in order to replicate atleast 50% of it . I learn a lot from all the members of CPP everyday  , who guide and help each other In learning this art to its fullest .

Your favourite shot of yours up till now and its details

The settings for this shot are – ISO 250 , f-8, SS 1/60.

 

This is my  favourite shot till now . This was shot in Rishikesh . I like this shot because of its mood and feel , but also it was highly appreciated by all the respective members in the group , which made this even better close to my heart .

What is your favourite type of photography? 

I used to shoot everything which forced me to remove the camera out of my arsenal and frame it . That included wildlife, street , landscape, events , etc. But the kind of happiness I get after shooting portraits was incomparable to anything else. If u can make someone smile in front of your camera and build a connection with the person , that’s the best feeling . And that’s the beauty of portrait photography for me .

I mostly shoot fashion portfolios  , pre-maternity portfolios and environmental portraits .

 

What is the equipment that you use?

Currently I own and use the following:

Camera:

I currently own and use the following  :

CameraCanon EOS 700D

Lenses – 18-55 mm wide-angle lens .

55-250 mm telephoto zoom lens .

Canon 50mm prime f1.8  .

TripodJoby Gorillapod

Vanguard ALTA Tb-19

Strobe light / Speedlight – Digitek DFL-200Rt

Simpex 100w studio kit .

Retouching TabletWacom PEN&TOUCH .

And I use Sandisk 32gb memory cards and 2 extra batteries , wireless shutter release button.

How photography has changed your life?

Photography has completely changed my life in a year  . It has not only helped me to live my life to my own terms but also , now I have a new meaning to my life and I am really fortunate to be able to take photography as a profession after my basic studies .

Photography has taught me to admire the smallest changes in the environment around me . The chirping of the birds , the sunrise & sunset , such small events which happen everyday didn’t matter to me when I wasn’t a photographer ,  but now I cherish these moments thorough my camera every single day .

The biggest possible change in my life because of photography is the overwhelming amount of love and appreciation I receive every-day  from all my photography peers and friends   .  It feels good when people call you photographer instead of your name   . And I am really grateful for the title of “ Little Magician “ given to me by Kush sir ,  and all of this is possible because of CPP .  As I said before , CPP is the best thing that has happened to me in my life and career .

Other shots that you would like to show

 

What are your future aspirations in terms of photography?

While standing by the shore , I can see an entire ocean left to swim ahead of me in terms of photography . I want to learn as much as I can about this life-changing art  . My main aim is to become a Fashion Photographer and also becoming an expert in other forms of photography . I am looking forward to get a degree in photography and take this overwhelming passion to another level . I still need to learn a lot about the business and retouching of images .

Anything else you would like to add 

Other things being apart . Thanks to Kush and all the 1000+ family members  of CPP , I am really grateful to all of you in every manner .  A big applause to Kush , for founding CPP and giving an opportunity to me and many others to join you in your workshops and sharing this art with us .

I am a proud member of this group . I can’t express the degree of  change that CPP and Photography has brought in me . Thanks to every single person who read this article  .

Happy Clicking .

Cheers .

How Photography Changed My Life: Umang Sagar, Senior Manager at ICICI, Pune

An introduction about who you are, what you do for a living and how you got into photography. 

A warm hello to all the creative souls at Creative Pad.

I am Umang Sagar, an artist at heart, Senior Cluster Manager at ICICI Direct, Pune by profession.

Since the advent of camera phone most of us have the artist in us come out, even a VGA camera was thrilling in those days, before I graduated to a digital camera much later. However, when my daughter was born, that was when I thought I need an SLR to ensure I capture the memories, a decision that eventually turned out to be one of my most favourite passion.

How was your first experience with your camera?

The first 3 years with my Canon 600D was all about being into AUTO mode and occasionally let the camera make me look good behind it……

I was thrilled whenever a good pic came out, probably the only thing I practiced was keeping my hands still and ensuring my artistic heart was working in identifying the moments to capture.

Whenever I saw a stunning pic from someone else, I would think the equipment must be very expensive, hence such pic!!! Till last year when I joined Creative Pad Photography’s basic photography workshop.

What were the things you did to get better at photography?

After considering myself a photographer for 3 long years, finally a year back, for some reason I just googled what are the options to learn photography in Pune? Thus I landed at Creative Pad Photography, one of the most rewarding decision I have ever made.

I was very sceptical to begin with, as I thought others who would come to the workshop would be BONDS and I would end up making a fool of myself. I can safely say after the first 45 min or so, our mentor Kush ensured that all our nerves and self-doubts were settled and we enjoyed the two sessions immensely while learning the nuances of what photography basics were.

End of the session when Kush asked to go back to all the pics we ever clicked and post the one which we thought was our best, I could hardly find any, some disobeyed the rule of 3rd, some were over exposed, some had some other flaws !! The flaws were evident and my photography journey had started eventually that day on….……

Your favourite shot of yours up till now and its details

The one shot which I feel really warmed my heart most is actually not shot from my DSLR, but my mobile…It is of two birds flying (below) and caught in a moment that made me tag it as tango in the air. For me, the moment was serene and beautiful, hence I added back flares in editing to add to the aura of the moment. If I had the same pic shot using DSLR that would surely be on my wall.

 

What is your favourite type of photography? 

I enjoy shooting anything that I can capture well and is not just a run on the mill shot, but I have always enjoyed shooting animals most. I rarely needed to worry about bad hair or bad expression, improper make up, shut eyes or other stuff that becomes a nightmare while shooting humans!!!….just kidding, I just feel more comfortable shooting animals and I feel their shots come out more natural and reflect the most serene and beautiful side of nature for me, the side where there is no rush to outrun anyone for no reason, where there is no reason to be lesser than what I was born as or meant to be…

What is the equipment that you use?

Currently I own and use the following:

Camera:

Canon 600D EOS DSLR

Lens:

50mm Prime Lens 

18-55 mm Lens

70-250 mm zoom Lens

10-20 mm EFS Wide Angled Lens

150-600 mm Contemporary Lens from Sigma

 

Flash:

Neewer Speedlight 580

Tripod :

Photron Pro Tripod

And Of course I have additional battery and 32 GB * 3 Cards with 10x Speed

How photography has changed your life

Photography has brought sea change in me, it’s not just overtaken all other hobbies that I had, but made me look at things differently. A lot that goes around me, I try to visualize how my lens would capture it. The beauty in the smaller things are more evident now. There certainly are more colours to things around me. Nothing gives more satisfaction than being able to capture a moment in its grandeur, capture it in its full bloom and glory.

Other shots that you would like to show 

What are your future aspirations in terms of photography?

There are way so many things I wish to achieve. Among generics I would learn to get better at editing pics, click better portraits and be more creative while shooting landscapes. My all-time dream is to capture through my lens, the beauty of the Grand Canyon and some underwater shots.

Anything else you would like to add 

Above everything else, thank you Kush for being much more than an awesome mentor. You have no idea at what levels you inspire us all. I am very thankful for this opportunity to share my little journey and to you all for patiently reading it all. I am looking forward to read other journeys and learn from them. I am a proud CPPian and I am so glad to be a part of such amazingly gifted artists’ fraternity. Keep clicking…..