Saturday, October 22, 2016

Chitradurga ~ Part -1 : Through the moments

Chitradurga fort is a treasure trove for anyone who wants to do some serious photography. The amount of opportunity that it provides in terms of making several types of images is simply mind boggling. This place was in my wish list to visit since long. Finally it happened few months back. It was a short visit. We were there for about an hour or two. For the scale of that place two hours is nothing. What you see in those two hours is just like a trailer! To see the movie in its entirety one has to spend at least couple of days. A week is even better!

During that quick visit I tried to make few images. I was not interested in making conventional images of that place. I had seen them in plenty. I was in a mood to do couple of experiments. First -  I was thinking if I can show that place through a set of moments, perhaps a set of fleeting moments, moments frozen into frames in space and time.  Second - in my next post! :)

During many discussions with various eminent and contemporary photographers there was always this question as to - What is it that defines photography in its uniqueness? What is it which is unique to photography but not to other form of visual art? 

It is the ability to arrest a fleeting moment that has no past and future but still exists in space and time. Making a pre-visualised photographs is a different story and that in the distant horizon comes close to the process of painting but still maintaining a thin boundary between the two. But in my view this is not the uniqueness of the medium of photography.. Uniqueness is defined by the  former argument. Latter is just another way of expression.

Here is a small write-up by Nirlep Singh written in CNP forum where he has beautifully explained this process in detail. To this day I keep visiting this article over and over again.

"An absurdity called a photograph"

Off late I have been trying to push myself into this realm. Throwing myself into the situation where I forcefully forget that I have a camera in my hand and try to flow through the experience of the place and in the flow make some images whenever I 'feel' like making one, not deliberately, with no urgency, with no pre-visualisation. I am just being in the moment and let my instinct do the photography. I am enjoying it. I am enjoying the way mind gets opened up with no constraints of any sorts. Earlier I was hesitant to take out my camera in public and point the lens towards strangers around me. It was probably because of the thought that 'What would they think about me? - Will it cause discomfort to them? - Am I breaching their privacy? -  Do they think that I am showing off? - and all other absurd questions'. I was rarely shooting street or urban photographs when there is crowd around and I attribute these questions to the lack of such experience. But off late I am not surrendering myself to that feeling and trying to break away from it. Hence you can see some of my urban and street photography posts in the recent past and that will continue.

Second experiment in the next post!