Saturday, October 17, 2009

Hope the Deepawali brought you all immense joy and happiness. Some frames from yesterday's evening (17th Oct, 2009)

Flowers in the Sky:

Start burst-1

Wow...What a blast!!!

Start burst-2

One of the diwali actions...I loved the way the person was using the red flame to light some flower pots...taken from the balcony of our flat.


Diwali Sky-2009:

Diwali Sky-2009

LED lights on our balcony: loved the dramatic lighting that they were creating:
Diwali Lights-1

Diwali Lights-2

Diwali  Lights-3

Some from Diwali-2008: Last year's diwali also happened in Bangalore. We were staying that time at Palm tree place, Victoria Layout, Bangalore.

Diwali Sky-2008

Diwali Sky



Painting with Light: This would be considered as a failed shot...but the way the light has paited the frame, I really love the interestingness the frame brings about !!

painting with light

Don't the following look like the millions of them all moving at great speed to the singular whole, the root of life !!! I have named the pic: Light Sperms ;-)

Light sperms

Flowers in the Sky, Standard Stuff:

One more Flower in the sky

Flower in the sky

Rain of the light

Hope u guys had a rocking Diwali-2009 and enjoyed the series as much as I did making it.


Saturday, September 26, 2009

Ruminations 20K Kms up in the air

6:15 PM already and the sun is still high in the sky. somewhere down on earth, the sunset would have already taken place. As I stare outside the window (on one of the many flights that I was forced to take because of work-u see, we have to work for Roti, kapda, makaan and thodi si Chivas!!!), the idea suddenly cropped up, why not write on one of the many experiences that I have had with Aerial photography...

well, first step is to get on a plane...for that one needs to have a ticket. but this is where it begins...try and get a ticket for a flight approx 30 minutes before the sunset and 1 hours before the sunrise...Reason: the sunsets and the sunrises up in the sky happen later than the sunsets on the ground and sunrises happen earlier. So timing the flight well is important. don't worry if it is cloudy below...Up there, it is a different world altogether.

Next challenge is to get a good seat...So after aligning the directions as per Sunrise and the Sunsets, I am sure you would like to choose the window seats. Now the challenge is to get a seat which is not on the wings. Getting the panorama of the sunset/ sunrise while sitting on the wing seats is a bit difficult because the Wings almost always come in the frame. Choose at least 3-4 rows ahead and 7-8 rows behind the wings. That way the view is better.

Once the seats are are all set for the action.

Some of my shots while travelling across India...

Pyaasi Nadiya -darker
This shot was taken somewhere between Ahmedabad and Bangalore. The sunset up there had still not started. But the sun was such a magical angle that the whole river entering the sea looked like molten lava flowing in.I have named this shot 'Nature's Calligraphy' because of the way it looks. This shot was chosen to be exhibited in the Frames of Mind-2009 Photography Exhibition in Bangalore.

Cloud Formation-1- Light just filtering in

Cloud Formation-2- Transluscence
I was pleasantly surprised how the trnasluscence of the clouds look so pretty. This, I had never seen on ground.

Cloud Formation-3- The small colonies of clouds- Juveniles :-)

Cloud Formation-4- Some strange lighting here

Cloud Formation-5- Seeing other flights from my flight :-)
And while one stares outside the windows of flights, u can also see other flights passing you by...some funny expereince that because even the skies are becoming increasingly crowded.

Cloud Formation-6- Do u see Superman flying with right arm outstretched
Interesting formation: Try and find out how Superman flies with arms outstreched.

Cloud Formation-7-When only a small patch of the clouds get lighted

Cloud Formation-8
Some selective lighting here. Seems like some clouds are more equal that others ;-)

Cloud Formation-9- Sunset as a line
I had never seen a sunset when sun looks like just a line like this...

Cloud Formation-10-Transversal
A line of cloud making a transversal across the colour bands in the sky

Cloud Formation-11

Hope you liked the series as much I liked making it...More will follow soon...

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Sonakshi growing up faster that I thought she would...

Sometime back, we had been to Golden Palms and Spa for a Sunday Dayout. This place is near Bangalore...

The massage felt really relaxing, the lunch was awesome, the grass was lovely...all all this without any worries of the world...

As I was observing Sonakshi playing around, I suddenly felt that she is growing up faster that I thought she would...Soon, she would be good to fly and fly away she become a world citizen. A father's heart let out an inaudible sigh that day...

One from the sunday...

Kunkun at Golden Palms

moving shooter and target

I have been off the grid for so long that one fine evening I just felt like holding my Gal. So, just set the 70-200 onto the road sat in a vehicle and held the shots. A few interesting ones that came up are as follows. These just came of the traffic and vehicle lights.

[Disclaimer: In real photographic technicalities, these shots would be called as failures...but somehow I loved the simple and complex patterns they made.]

1. just hanging

2.when our car took the turn

3. when our car took the turn

Saturday, August 22, 2009

SWINE FLU- Simple ways to avoid

Some tips for prevention from an AIIMS Doctor- found this over mail from a dear friend:


Thanks to media hype about H1N1, several people who trust me have either approached or called me to advise. The hype in media about the utility of face masks and N95 respirators as a tool for general protection against H1N1 can't be deplored enough. Yesterday, a friend who listened wanted me to write down briefly what I advised so that he could tell others in similar words. Hence this short email to friends whom I have advised recently (and others whom I haven't yet). Please realize that this is not an official advice, especially the one about face masks or N95.

Most N95 respirators are designed to filter 95% particulates of 0.3µ, while the size of H1N1 virus is about 0.1µ. Hence, dependence on N95 to protect against H1N1 is like protecting against rain with an umbrella made of mosquito net.

Tamiflu does not kill but prevents H1N1 from further proliferation till the virus limits itself in about 1-2 weeks (its natural cycle). H1N1, like other Influenza A viruses, only infects the upper respiratory tract and proliferates (only) there. The only portals of entry are the nostrils and mouth/ throat. In a global epidemic of this nature, it's almost impossible not coming into contact with H1N1 in spite of all precautions. Contact with H1N1 is not so much of a problem as proliferation is.

While you are still healthy and not showing any symptoms of H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple steps - not fully highlighted in most official communications - can be practiced (instead of focusing on how to stock N95 or Tamiflu):

1. Frequent hand-washing (well highlighted in all official communications).

2. "Hands-off-the-face" approach. Resist all temptations to touch any part of face (unless you want to eat, bathe or slap).

3. Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (use Listerine if you don't trust salt). H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/ nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt water has the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an infected one. Don't underestimate this simple, inexpensive and powerful preventative method.

4. Similar to 3 above, clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water. Not everybody may be good at Jala Neti or Sutra Neti (very good Yoga asanas to clean nasal cavities), but blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton buds dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral population.

5. Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C (Amla and other citrus fruits). If you have to supplement with Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption.

6. Drink as much of warm liquids as you can. Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.

All these are simple ways to prevent, within means of most households, and certainly much less painful than to wait in long queues outside public hospitals.

Happy breathing!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

I have just glanced thru one episode of "Rakhi ka Swayambar"(RKS) and what I felt was that this grand fiasco was a money churning device that has been conceived to make grand fools of people and increasing the TRPs. People always got into heated debates as to how RKS was all about women's liberation and how the Indian Woman has come of age these days. That Rakhi belongs to humble beginnings (Sawant was born as Neeru Sawant to Usha Sawant and a Mumbai policeman who Sawant has described as "very strict".Hailing from a poor family, she had only a few years of formal education), stuggling youth and dramatic controverises (Item girl/ Mika Kissing episode/ Nach baliye-3 staged wardrobe malfunction etc), made the audience go ga-ga over her and RKS. I was pleasantly surprised that some families would go to such lengths as shown in RKS to make Rakhi their family member.

What I never understood was how is this entire episode related to Women's emancipations and independence when a woman is being used to churn monies for the channel. I won't have the liberty to read the agreement that the TV channel or Rakhi signed for RKS, but the entire show seemed ultra staged...And all that natak during the Grand Finale of the show just proves my point. I even had a good debate at home on this...crazzy as it may sound....I was very sure then that this so-called engagement would fall apart in a couple of days...And here this comes in hot from the oven...Lets grow up...If women's emancipation can happen with RKS, god help the thoughts and the meta-thoughts on this...

Elesh Parunjanwala is not my man, says Rakhi Sawant - It won’t be shocking to reveal that things are not going fine between item girl Rakhi Sawant and his fiancée Elesh Parujanwala. Just after a week of Rakhi ka swayamwar’s grand finale, she has started raising doubts on Elesh and said that they are not ‘made for each other’. She also added that she hardly knew Elesh because of lack of dates between the couple and her illiteracy clashes a lot with her well educated fiancée. Also there is a big communication problem between both of them.

Rakhi is also doubtful about Elesh’s flirtatious nature and fear that his strings of affair in the past might turn into a serious relationship and he might lose interest in her soon. Rakhi said she still hadn’t got over her break up with Abhishek Awasti and wasn’t prepared for another one. Taking a dig at the participants of Rakhi ka swayamwar, she said most of the contestants were cheapsters who participated for gaining publicity that had left her feeling disillusioned about the concept of love.

Rakhi Sawant said that she talks with Manas Katyal every single day as she gets along with him quite well. She also added that she could have simply chosen Manas but the age difference between the two prevented her putting the garland around his neck. Undoubtedly this candid talk won’t please the Parujanwala family but also it won’t be a shock to know that all things that are happening now were scripted too!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Pearls of Wisdom from everyday work

This is a page that I would be updating on a daily basis on pearls of wisdom that flow out as dialogues in daily life from friends, colleagues, spouse, Kid, overheard...

1. "Boss, tera funnel toh tunnel hai"

2. Rita had triplets-Mat, Pat, Tat. While breeding was not a problem, feeding was. 'coz while Mat and Pat fed, there was no tit for Tat.

3. "Whats wrong with u for the last week. Are u on Pot!!!"

4. "Where are u these days...Khada hai na !!!"

5. "Don't go ballistic"

6. "Where I stand, depends on where I sit."

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


On August 7, 2009

At 12hr 34 minutes and 56 seconds on the 7th of August this year, the time and date will be

12:34:56 07/08/09

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

This will never happen in your life again

Monday, May 18, 2009

English August- A point of view

I generally don't do book reviews so officially...I curl up with a book, enjoy it till the end, more often re-read the interesting ones and soak up as much as I can...

There are four books I just can't get enough off.

1. English August: By Upamanyu Chatterjee
2. The Inscrutable Americans: By Anurag Mathur
3. Confessions of an SOB: By Al Neuharth
4. The Fountainhead: By Ayn Rand.

I might have read, re-read these books so many times that they have been dog-eared by now.

There is a common pattern that emerges here. All these three books are so brutally honest and authentic that u almost warm up to them from the very first page.

Why do I love English August:

This is one thing I have been ruminating over for the past couple of days...Just imagine book starting with -

"I’ve a feeling, August, you’re going to get hazaar fuc-ked in Madna"
Amazing mix, the English we speak. Hazaar fucked. Urdu and American,Agastya laughed, 'a thousand fucked, really fucked. I’m sure nowhere else could languages be mixed and spoken with such ease.

English August starts like this...LoL. It takes me back to the days in BITS where 'Hazaar Fucked" is like slang used genarlly. 'In today's quiz, I got hazaar fucked, maan!!' 'If u don't answer the question, I am going to hazaar fuck u'.

English August immediately pulled me into my student days. And thats where life turns so bloody beautiful. The Central character, Agastya clears the IAS and joins for his training in 'some dot of the map called Madna'.

So many similarities. Madna was supposed to be the hottest place in India. But can it really beat Pilani. Imagine writing ur even-semester annual papers in Feb-March and u suddenly see a blood drop on ur answer paper. The blood vessels inside the nose have blasted out becuase of the heat.The aimlessness and the sub-counsious always poking one with the question-Why am I here...This is the same question that I kept feeling thru my Engineering days.

Mary Janes and Led Zeps came into the second stage of my Student life. While doing MBA, imagine the stress of completeing the projects and the presentations while being completely stoned.We had our special joints to procure them and guess what they were then called-'special tobacco'. Phohibition be damned.

The preparation of a joint is so involving that u almost get a kick even while rolling it up.And now imagine, being completely sloshed with Old Monk, then completely stoned with Mary Jane and then swaying to Dire straits and Pink Floyd...Thats almost meta-physical...Even the purple chaos of smoke that lay suspended in midair inside the hostel rooms was so bloody beautiful that u almost can feel the numbness of silence and thank god for the amazing pleasures that he has created and bestowed upon us.

...Call it the recency...But English August was the flavour of the book. I am now charged to re-read the other three and come back with some snippets of thoughts on them sooner.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

A recent trip to Kodai

Recently, we had the chance to visit Kodai...It was sooooo cold and windy there and to add to that it rained, OMG...but we all had great fun in the cold.

The flowers and the orchids were so lovely. I think I made some good shots of the flowers...hope u like them...

Purple strand

A bunch of purples-1


Papa mama kuku

Rose-1 with bee


A bunch of purples

A captive Emu:

And most favourite flower:
my fav flower

hope u enjoyed them as much I loved making the set...

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

A Puri morning...

Sometime back, I had the chance to spend a beautiful morning at the Puri Beach. This beach is a beauty...

Some shots from that morning here:
Shot on the Puri beach. tried to get a painting effect with a little more exposure.

Ready to go

These are the boats on which the fishermen go into the high seas for fishing. They start around 0200 hours and return by 0500 hours to beat the heat. The fishermen form teams of 4 and lift these boats on their shoulders and take them to the sea...

I was of the assumption that these fishermen would be Oriyas (In Oriya, the local language, the fisherment are called Nolia). But, as in any job or business, the fishermen are from many different states of India like Andhra Pradesh, Tamilnadu, Bihar, West Bengal and some even from Maharashtra and Kerala.

Short to tall

Flying over the horizon

High Pingpong

Golden Spangles

More details in Puri here-

Hope u liked the much I loved making it...

Why isn't my breakfast consistent ...

While I was going thru one of the blogs of a dear friend...I discovered a small part of myself...which I had never consistently realised...

I love the varied tastes of mangoes when they are in season…even my daily breakfast has a different taste everyday…And this change is refreshing…

let me think aloud:

I eat bread omelets on 95% of my days for breakfast.

1. Every day the eggs are different because they are from different chickens and are at various levels of decomposition…

2. The heat and the quantity of oil and other ingredients during preparation are different each day.

3. Even the breads are different depending on the availability in the bakery…

I ignore all these and still love the bread omelets…Probably it has got something to do with the Focal point of observation. if one focuses on the details, the big picture is blurry and if one focuses on the big picture, the details are blurry- so in, photographic parlance, one needs to get the right depth of field for the matters so that both the Big picture and the details are in the right mix and balance each other. here one does some compromises…

Link to my friend's blog here...

Friday, March 20, 2009

Lingaraj Temple- A Challenge to photogs...

A brief introduction:
Lingaraaj means 'the king of Lingas', 'Linga' or 'Lingam' being the symbol of Lord Shiva worship. The temple is more than 1000 years old, dating back in its present form to the last decade of the eleventh century, though there is evidence that parts of the temple have been there since sixth century AD as the temple has been emphasized in some of the seventh century Sanskrit texts. This is testimony to its sanctity and importance as a Shiva shrine.[1] By the time the Lingaraj temple was constructed, the Jagannath (form of Vishnu) cult had been growing, which historians believe is evidenced by the co-existence of Vishnu and Shiva worship at the temple.
The temple is traditionally believed, though without historical authentication, to be built by the Somavanshi king Jajati Keshari, in 11th century AD. Jajati Keshari had shifted his capital from Jajpur to Bhubaneswar which was referred to as Ekamra Kshetra in the Brahma Purana, an ancient scripture.
The Lingaraj temple stands majestically as the largest temple in Bhubaneswar. At 55 metres high, it dominates the landscape with 150 smaller shrines in its spacious courtyard and is surrounded by massive walls lavishly decorated with beautiful sculptures.

And now the challenge:
I have been trying to capture the various hues of Lingaraj Temple for sometime now. There is a ban on photography inside Lingaraj Temple and no authority other than the temple trust is authorised to allow photography inside the temple premises. And when my request was declined, my resolve doubled. And the lame excuse that was given (that there are many nude 3-D portraits inside the temple, which people shoot and that creates a bad name for the temple...awwww!!! Come on, this is our culture and we have as much right to the culture as these fellows are), my resolve trebled.

What I tried to overcome the problem:
I did at least 10 rounds around the boundary walls of the temple complex and ear-marked places, from where I will get clean shots of the temple. Post that, I started talking to the locals to give me access to the terraces of their buildings so that I get a closer view of the temple. Loaded with a 70-200 and 18-55, I started with these locations one by one.

This shot was taken from the third floor terrace of the Municipal hospital terrace on the west side. I was chased by the hospital ward boys for having reached the terrace(all entry doors to terrace were locked) and how I reached the terrace, u don't want to know.This is the southern side of the temple premises. I think this is the only shot of Lingaraj Temple in the world from this angle :-) Do u see that telecom tower on the right side-To take a good shot, I was thinking of scaling the tower and taking an aerial view. Couldn't succeed because of police protection that day. Next time, will try again...
Sneak view of Lingaraj Temple-South side

This was taken from the South-east terrace of a shopping complex building...
Lingaraj Temple- South-east corner

This shot was taken from the terrace of the Municipal hospital terrace on the west side.The whitish platform on the left side is the visitor's platform. This was built during Lord Curzon's time when he wanted to see whether the premises were used for mutiny!!! All the foreigners who want to see the temple use this place for viewing and photography.
Lingaraj Temple during sunset from West

One more from there..A tilt might be felt. The temple structure allowed this as the straightest frameTemple Lions facing North-Lingaraj Temple

This was taken from the visitor's gallery during the sunrise:

Sun-bathed Lingaraj Temple

And this was taken from far away on the opposite side of Bindusagar Lake...
Lingaraj Temple-1

I had a great time with the little escapades with the project. Hope u enjoyed it too.