Monday, April 25, 2011

Met him after an year!

It was on Jan 31st, 2010. I was at Indian Institute of World Culture auditorium on BP Wadia road, Bangalore. I was there to attend a book releasing function of Nagesh Hegde.

One particular face caught my attention. He is a watchman there. I have no idea what drew my attention, but I felt a strong urge to make a portrait of him. That was one of the very few occasions  when I had asked a person to sit for a portrait. The function was going on inside. I made his image just outside the hall.


After one year and two months on 16th April, 2011 I felt a strong urge to give him a print of his image which I made an year ago. I was having no idea if he is still working there or not. At the time when I had photographed him he was quite old.

I made a print of the image and went there to the same place on 17th April.

He was still there. Re arranging all the chairs, who were all scattered as a function has just ended. Another book releasing function!

I showed him his image. He smiled. He felt a strange feeling, more of happiness and little bit surprised and asked "Have you come all the way from there just to give this photo to a person who is nothing?!!". I was silent. Had only a smile on my face. I didn't talk. I felt the words would dilute the emotions. He then said 'Thank you sir'. I bowed my head.

No words again.


I asked him if he could give me a chance to make another image, this time by holding the print. He happily agreed. I was expecting a smile on his face this time, though I dint say it explicitly. Surprisingly he posed in the same serious way and it was natural. I dint say a word.

Made few images. Thanked him. Came back.

I was happy and smiling when I stepped out on the BP Wadia road.

Cheers,
Ash

10 comments:

Ranjitha said...

u know what, i happened to start reading this blog by chance and as I read through really felt very happy that I was reading it...this man at the library is such a familiar face...I think he has been working at the library for such a long long time... as I have grown and taken books at the IIWC, have always seen him there...
Thank you...! :)

Anonymous said...

Love the article. No more words.

Pramod Viswanath said...

Fabulous effort, great story and tribute to dignity of labor and photography! Hats off Ashwin.

Making someone happy and important is 'art of living'.

Ashwini Kumar Bhat said...

Thank you friends.

The smile on his face had made my day. Just tried spreading that cheer through sharing it on the blog. Good that you liked it.

Thanks.

shridhar said...

A very nice Gift to a Person who makes many functions go success but leave self as unnoticed.
Nice effort .. and nice writeup

santoshbava said...

Great... I visited IIWC many times. Though i did not observe him much i saw him most of the times. He makes arrangement for the shows of accomplished people from different walks of life in the society. You really gave him something..

thank you..

deponti said...

Lovely post...and two beautiful portraits. What you did is one of the main reasons why I feel you are a very good-hearted, genuine person.

Ashok Hegde said...

Something very different....hope to see more of such specials.

Ashok Hegde....again said...

http://kalyanvarma.net/journal/2011/05/21/when-a-portrait-is-not-just-a-portraits/ Just visited this link.

I perceive a similar chemistry and thought processes both behind and before the lens. A trend perhaps...(syndrome??)

Keshav said...

All I can say is the person will remember you forever. Sometimes smallest of gestures go a long way in making us better people.

Fabulous!