Why Photography

–“Ki O, apne chhagoler chhobi tulen kere”

-“ Emnei, bhalo lage”

“ Kichhu to ekta dhanda aache, nahoile keu chhagoler chobi tuleni” ?


I will never forget this dialogue between our Partha and a stranger while Partha was shooting. I almost died laughing when he described the encounter to me!

While photography never ceases to amaze me, this question, in a slightly modified form pops up in my mind almost every time I take a picture “Ki hey, ei chhobi ta tulcho kere ?”

Really, why are we photographers? What  are we passionate about it? Why do people go to the extreme to shoot a picture?

To me, freezing a moment forever in a frame and then being able to go back in time through that image… and being able to make us feel the same is very rewarding!

The fact that I can pick and choose what I want from the visual chaos in front of me , capture it and then present it to others is very thought-provoking, mentally stimulating and therefore, rewarding!

Above all, it is pure fun!

To me, viewing excellent images from others is equally gratifying. The vicarious feeling cannot be expressed, it can only be felt. How many times I have lamented, “I wish I took that picture!”

Let me give you an example- from my very childhood- I have been fascinated by the images of Niagara Falls. Whenever I saw a picture of it, I felt the urge to go there immediately and take pictures! One day, when I finally stood in front of it with a camera in my hand- I got goosebumps! I was in heaven! Nothing on this earth could have matched my happiness on that day!

No matter the reason we are photographers, it should give us joy and pleasure to create an image and enjoy an image. It should not be just a snapshot. Before one shoots, one should have a picture of that picture in the head- a clear idea what the image is going to look like! Only then, can one create a successful image.

Always ask yourself- why am I shooting this? If you do not like your creation, the chances of others loving it will be very slim.

In this digital era, when anybody can take a snapshot and modify it whatever way he/she wants, when there are more photoshopographers than photographers… we, who strive to be better photographers and try to create images not only for the eyes but for the souls, must ask this question every time we shoot, “Ki O, apne ei chhobi ta tultachen kere?”

Happy shooting.

Swapan Chaudhuri, MD