Interview with Raghav Gautam : A passionate photographer with professional skills
A biotechnology student, who then studied VFX and animation, and went on to become a freelance photographer and cinematographer after working in the background in a couple of VFX and Animation studios. He has worked with some big and plenty of small brands and startups as a fashion and advertising photographer and cinematographer, having also directed and shot several corporate videos among others. Photography is something that he thinks about all the time, and has aimed at getting better. He’s mostly a self-taught photographer with no formal training apart from several workshops and sessions with some amazing contemporary as well as senior photographers. He loves the visual medium and aims to create several stories woven in single frames, which he is currently working on.
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I’m Raghav, a Biotechnology graduate who has studied film, VFX and 3D, before coming to photography. I’m someone who lives in extremes, like very good or very bad – and that’s how I truly describe myself.
2. Did you go to school to study photography?
I studied other aspects in visual medium but not photography – perhaps a few seminars and workshops here and there, mostly self-learned activity though.
3. Can you please share the story about the start of your photographic journey?
I bought my camera for shooting short-films and videos. Then during and after my job – it was just lying there. Then there was a heritage walk by Vikramjit Singh Rooprai, for DHPC. I picked up my camera, took many pictures – and hated all of them. Since then, it became a hobby, to take pictures and hate them, and hope to keep getting better and better.
4. How long have you been a photographer?
Almost three years now that I’ve been a professional photographer.
5. Photography is your passion or profession or both?
6. How would you describe your photographic vision? What kind of feel do you try and create in your photos?
My photographic vision hasn’t really developed yet completely – but it’s more towards the dark and subtle drama at present. Let’s see where it goes. I love contrasts – be it visible or metaphorical. I try to have some story in the picture, which is usually a really difficult ask.
7. What are the characteristics that a good Travel Photographer needs to have?
Willingness to travel – at whatever budget and whatever time, traveling alone will improve travel photography, you’ll keep learning new tricks and techniques regularly but you can’t do all of them at one place.
8. What type of camera and lenses do you use?
I use Canon 5D Mark III, Canon 550D as my primary and secondary bodies, Canon 24-105, 50 f1.8, 18-55, Tammy 70-300 as my lenses while I love to use 70-200 f2.8 on commercial projects (Renting out).
9. How important is Photoshop in your final images?
It is a tool I use to get to the end product. It becomes very important in some commercial projects, while usually I suffice with Lightroom. And I recommend Lightroom to everyone. I’ll be soon coming up with a Youtube Channel about Photography – much of it will cover post-processing.
10. What is the best compliment do you have ever? Could you please share Happiest Moment in your Photography Life?
Best compliment – when a stranger walked in, I could see the expression of wonder on his face, and he congratulated me for brilliant exhibition. The exhibition itself is the happiest moment, as also the interview that was published in Metro Life of Deccan Herald.
11. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
I will consider it and share it when it comes, right now I’ll prefer not to divulge.
12. What are some simple tips for taking great travel photos?
I’m not primarily a travel photographer. One advice that I can give, a very general advice, is to soak yourself in the atmosphere. Travel is for the soul, and until you don’t travel with your soul, the pictures will be merely postcard pictures.
13. How do you make a living with your photography?
I do fashion, products, lifestyle, and other genres of professional photography. I also shoot corporate headshots and corporate videos. I am also into pre-wedding cinematography and photography, and wedding cinematic videos.
14. So whats Next in your list?
The Youtube Channel – it’s coming very soon. It will cater to everyone, mostly the non-photographers and the beginners. I don’t think non-photographers are targeted, and we will be creating content for them specifically too.
15. Recently you organized an exhibition; kindly share about that.
The theme – Delhi by Night, titled City Lights – Delhi by Nights, the exhibition was about exploring our Delhi at night. I got an idea of that from one of the educational lessons I was going through on Udemy where the photographer was exploring New York at Night. I decided to do that with Delhi, and you’ve yourself seen the result.
16. Any specific tips you have for newbie photographers?
Explore, look out for options, don’t close your doors on anything – and eventually you’ll find your calling in photography.
17. You have a website/page also, please tell me about that?
The professional website is http://frameraid.net/, facebook and instagram are: https://fb.com/frameraid https://instagram.com/frameraid. There’s also 500px.com/frameraid. Soon, I’m coming with a personal website covering personal projects.
18. Words for your followers and why they should follow you?
Thankyou to everyone who has already been following me. For others, follow me if you like any of my work and feel intrigued by the pictures. If pictures can’t make you follow my work, nothing will.
19. If you could live anywhere on this awesome planet where would you build your dream home?
20. Words and suggestion about my website www.indiaataglance.com
It is a beautifully and cleanly designed website, and I see how hard you work to make sure it runs smoothly and beautifully. Suggestion – keep at it and don’t stop. Stay motivated and you’ll get where you belong.