gustaspandjeroo

Hello World!

The World Through A Viewfinder

Taj Mahal Agra - the monumental tear drop broods over the Jamuna River

Taj Mahal Agra – the monumental tear drop broods over the Jamuna River

There was a time when we shunned cameras. Way too often, we saw people missing the moment while trying to capture the memory of it.

Things changed when our article on the Palaces of Baroda was accepted by a leading travel magazine… and it took 18 months before it saw print. The problem: the photographer assigned to illustrate it. He just took his time to get the job done.

Lakmi Vilas Palace in Baroda - the monument that convinced us that cameras and travel mix well

Lakmi Vilas Palace in Baroda – the monument that convinced us that cameras and travel mix well

We figured we stood a better chance of getting our travel stories published if they were packaged with images. So we enrolled for photography classes to learn the basics of the craft.

Taj Mahal Agra - framed in an archway.

Taj Mahal Agra – framed in an archway.

And so on subsequent assignments, we lugged along cameras and before we knew it, our perception of the world through the viewfinder changed. We started to look beyond snapshots; at the quality of light; its moods during the different times of the day; the angle at which it hit the subject, the play of shadows… We learned to appreciate the soft defused glow of overcast skies and of how it lit up a subject without losing details in patches of dark shadows.

Without consciously realising it, we started focussing on details and colours which we might have otherwise missed; the intricate carvings on a pillar or column of a building, arches, a colourful sari spread out to dry, a devotee praying… We found ourselves going beyond the obvious; looking for images that captured the mood of a destination… and it did not necessarily have to be a pretty picture.

The CST (VT) World Heritage Site building in Mumbai. We might have missed the peacock if we had not seen it in the zoom lens of our cameras

The CST (VT) World Heritage Site building in Mumbai. We might have missed the peacock if we had not seen it in the zoom lens of our cameras

As with all things, there are occupational hazards. Ever so often, and particularly so in India, a smiling face pops up in the viewfinder with eyes pleading to be photographed. On one occasion, at the Taj Mahal in Agra, we had placed our cameras on a marble bench to steady them when suddenly a cluster of people gathered around us and took turns placing their faces on the bench to look at the much photographed monument through the viewfinder.

Our first DSLR - Nikon D70 - 6 megapixel was top of the line then.

Our first DSLR – Nikon D70 – 6 megapixel was top of the line then.

Not all our photographs turn out the way we see them in the viewfinder. But that is ok in the digital era: we delete the bad ones. And sometime try to salvage them in photoshop. But that is another blog.

Today our cameras accompany us on all our travels, be it on assignment or on holiday. But we know when to call it quits and put the cameras aside and enjoy the view and/or experience even if it means missing out on a few excellent frames!

Taj Mahal Agra - a slash of red against white marble

The next blog: Faces of India courtesy our cameras

Advertisements

5 comments on “The World Through A Viewfinder

  1. Sukanya Ramanujan
    February 14, 2015

    I agree that my photography has helped me notice details that I would have otherwise missed very easily. Of course there is a mild obsession that I have to photograph everything beautiful I see but I balance it 🙂 Your photographs are beautiful- are you based out of India or do you travel here often?

    • gustaspjeroo
      February 14, 2015

      Thanks for your feedback. We are a husband and wife (Mumbai, India based) travel writers / photographers team

      • Sukanya Ramanujan
        February 14, 2015

        Good to e-meet you 🙂 I’m based out of Chennai!

  2. eduardolibby
    February 14, 2015

    Good story, good photos. Are you allowed to take photos inside the Taj Mahal?

    • gustaspjeroo
      February 15, 2015

      Thanks for the positive feedback… don’t we all love that.
      Yes, the Taj Mahal is a free photo zone…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: