Thursday, June 10, 2010

A DOZEN pictures with a story to tell…

I have been quite busy lately with my office work, and have really not done too much of photography. I hope to change it this month though. Although I don't see my office pressure easing until next month :-(

In the meantime, as I am idling on a Sunday morning, I collected these photographs to showcase on this blog. The all have a short story to tell, some interesting…some not so….

I hope my readers will appreciate…


Pic#1: The Comic Book scene - This was taken from the kitchen window of my apartment in Pune. It was about 7:30 PM in the evening, and we were preparing dinner for our guests when I noticed that the night sky had become strange mixture of blue, purple, orange, grey and black! It looked something straight out of comic book night scene drawing! I was amazed by the tricks nature can play. It only strengthens my belief that nothing we imagine is not there in nature!

Tech Info: E-P2 F/4.5 1/2 secs handheld against the window grill for support. Kit lens 14-42. ISO-200



 Pic#2 : Inside Infosys: This was taken inside the Infosys campus. Nothing extraordinary about the picture itself. However the story is interesting. In the Pune Infy campus in phase II, we have nice landscaping which they maintain diligently. You will see the 10 to 15 workers toiling over it all day long 7 days a week! When I joined Infy i used to think that they were just here for sometime and will go away once their job is done, but I was soooo wrong! They have been at it all of the 7 years I have spent in Infy and results are there to be seen – a pretty and well maintained landscape. Only minus point is, its hard to see a landscape in Infy without a laborer or 2 working on it. They have become inseparable part of the landscape itself! :-)

Tech Info: E-P2 F/2,8 1/250s pancake 25mm ISO-200


Pics #3 & #4 ; The other side of a flower: This is interesting, at least to me…I have always seen people photographing flowers from front/top. While looking al the flowers, you will see that back/bottom part is lot more interesting than most people would imagine. I also read in a book by a photographer who used unusual yet simple techniques to get pictures that get noticed. I tried to emulate his preaching in my own modest way. I was happy with the result :-)

Tech Info: #3 – ISO-800 indoors with side lighting from an open window F/3.4 1/50 ZD 50-200mm hand held. #4 – ISO-200 against the window f/5 50-200mm @ 1/320 hand held


Pic #5 : My Valentine: This was Valentines day :-). My wife gave me flowers and just the previous day I had bought a nice looking Berretta!!! Well, not the real one, its actually a cigarette lighter :-) but looks real enough! I couldn’t resist the temptation to shoot the clichéd “gun with flowers” scene! I loved the outcome. The streak of water was not intentional as the flowers were straight out of the vase. But they render a sinister yet sexy look to the scene, I feel :-)

Tech Info: E-P2 Indoor with light from the window. ISO-1600 f/3.5 @1/80 handheld


Pic #6 : The Movie Scene: The classic movie scene…or that's what I call it. :-) I saw this from my balcony one day and literally scampered for my camera. As you would probably know, once the sun is ready to set, it really goes down pretty quickly and it was, I remember, a race against time for me to get the camera and set it up quickly to get a few shots. There are couple of things I like about this pic (A) the sun looks like a BIG RED ball!! It was a fantastic site and (B) The electric tower in the fore ground. Together they provide a story of sun setting in the urban landscape, which, I felt, made a perfect picture.

Tech Info:E-30 f/3.5 on 50-200mm @ 1/800. This was one of the few instances I used the full Manual mode so that I can get the silhouette right.


Pic #7 : For your EYES only: This is my best candid so far. I had my pictures on display in an exhibition @ St. Joseph’s Art Fair. The stall next to mine was selling hand made soaps. And the owner of the stall was a girl who had one of the prettiest eyes I have ever seen !! I had my camera, as always, and I desperately wanted to shoot her (I mean take pictures of her eyes especially). So I sat down in my stall facing her and my camera on my lap with the Live View on. So nobody, including the girl, could tell that I was actually looking at her through my camera, because I was in upright position looking down at my camera screen. She was eating her lunch facing in my direction. I waited and waited for her to look in my direction so that I can get her eyes. Finally the moment came! I clicked at the absolutely the right moment and Voila! If you look at the picture, it looks as if she is deliberately staring at the camera with those beautiful eyes. But the fact is, I was at lease 20 feet away with my lens fully zoomed to 54mm (108mm of 35 mm equivalent) and the picture is cropped at least 30%, I was extremely happy with the live view. However, I had the focus locked on her all the while as I watched her, so there was no hunting by the cam when I released the shutter! The whole process took about 7 to 10 minutes, mostly the waiting time :-)

Tech Info: E-30 14-54mm, f/3.5 @ 1/40 with camera resting on my lap. ISO-800 indoors under hall lights, WB auto.


Pic #8 – The Perfect Storm: This was 19th Dec 2009. The day NJ was battered by one of the fiercest storm the state had ever seen. The storm left behind over 2 ft of snow in less than 18 hrs. The next day was completely white everything covered in the whitest snow I have ever seen. But the thing that fascinated me was the storm itself. It so intense that you could here the sound almost like in the movies. I was trying to take the mood of the storm, but couldn’t get it right with normal method of picture taking. I tried fast shutter,  slow shutter different WB setting. But could not get one right. Finally I decided to do one trick I had never tried before – Zooming the lens as soon as the shutter is released. So I held the camera tightly in my had with my elbows tucked in and released the shutter and at the same time Zoomed the lens in. The result was the mood of the perfect storm as I saw it. I loved the outcome.

Tech Spec: E-P2 f/4.5 @ 1/2 sec. ISO 800


Pic #9 – Adi’s Eyes: I believe, my 6 year old son Adu has beautiful eyes. Well, I may be biased since he is my son, but I wanted to capture his naughty, smiling eyes which will tell us what's going on in his mind :-). I made him sit in front of our bedroom window and tried to catch his eyes in the camera. However I realized that his mouth and nose were too distracting (not that they are bad!!) and the message I wanted to convey was getting lost in them. In order to accentuate his eyes, I had to figure out how to shoot his eyes and eyes alone without having him cover his mouth and nose! I tried to use a towel as a veil but it didn’t work. I then noticed that he was fiddling with a straw which is shaped like a Japanese fan (courtesy, neighbor hood restaurant!). I asked him to hold it in front of his eyes and tried a few shots. The first few were blurred eyes because the fan was too far from his mouth and he was not smiling too (I had to use large aperture). This one was perfect for my liking! Smiling eyes seem to tell you about some naughty thoughts going on in his mind!

Tech Info: E-P2 25mm f/4 ISO-400 1/200



Pic #10 – I Love India: Another Candid! On the Indian republic day of 2010, I wanted to capture some of the essence of how Indians celebrate the republic day. After shooting the streets we went to a mall to eat at the McDonalds in Nerul, New Bombay. I was intrigued by the tattoo on the cheeks of this pretty lady. I wanted to shoot her, but as she was sitting in the next table, it was too close for me without making it obvious. So I hid placed my camera on the table and and waited for the right moment. When she at her most natural, I clicked. I loved the expression on her face…those beautiful eyes and luscious  lips…I loved the outcome :-)

Tech Info: E-P2, ISO-2000, f/5.6 @ 1/8sec 42mm


Pic #11 – The Red Indian: This is in Plymouth plantation site. The native Indians live in their natural habitat in the Plymouth Plantation. I loved this guy, who was the chief its rude to call him that though!), with his cool head gear! I wanted to capture his expression as he was explaining us more about their lifestyle to our group. I waited and waited but and finally he turned toward me and I clicked :-) thanks to E-30 and 12-60mm the focusing speed was no problem at all! I love the way he carries himself! :-)

Tech Info: E-30, 12:60mm @ 55mm, f/4 @ 1/320s


Pic #12 – The Glowing Moon: Suni and were standing outside on our balcony one night and we noticed that the moon had this strange lovely glow around it. I was quite intrigued by it and I had to shoot it! I was afraid that the surreal glow would not be captured in the image. but was happy to see that it came out exactly as I saw it!

Tech Info: E-30 50-200mm @ 200mm, f/3.5 @ 1/50s