World Photography Day Capturing a Slice of Life

Cultural Diplomacy By Virendra Shekhawat

“Life imitates art far more than art imitates Life.” -- Oscar Wilde

Artists are inspired by the world around us and try to recreate the magic in it; sculptors immortalise people with statues, photographers capture slices of life pictures, and painters record events in their masterpieces.

Why are people inclined towards photography these days?

Art connoisseurs, particularly, take out time to spend on following their passion; they tend to take up something which helps them in connecting with their inner selves and get inclined towards any form of art, be it photography, creative arts, painting and sculpture among others.

Photography requires, in its most superior form, a complex equipment and apparatus called camera. With cameras, one can click pictures – freeze time and capture a slice of life.

As time goes by, pictures remain behind as evidence of the history; they bear witness to the era gone by. Black-and-white pictures gave way to colour and the evolution to high resolution pictures has only refined the fine craft of photography.

With ever-evolving technology and ever-passing time, photography has also become a medium to capture one’s day-to-day activities. With the onset of Facebook and social media platforms, photography has become more relevant as they are platforms to publish one’s content and connect with people around the world.

People and Photography

In the fast moving world, either we are worried about our past or planning for the future. As a consequence, we forget to live in our present. Photography is something that helps us to live in the present and allows us to be ourselves.

Photography as a hobby is always relevant because one can take up photography at any age or weight; can start as early as 13 or even at 75. One could be lean or maybe a power-packed 110 kg. Photography will never restrict. One can enjoy indoor photography or enjoy nature in the form of landscape and nature.

Photography helps people to get out of their homes and pushes them to click. And sometimes photos can show people what they failed to either see or visualise. This is one form of art where all photos became unique and are evidence of great history. If we talk about relevance of photography, it is one of the arts, which revives the history and presents the visual depiction of the events and unites people on shared history and heritage.

These days various meet-ups quite often are organised with like-minded individuals and some even calling it Heritage photowalk, or some ‘insta’ meet or get-together, but the ultimate agenda is to click pictures and meet like-minded people so this it is one way of meeting new people and understanding culture, glimpses of history, and thus, picture the future. This way one has a great opportunity to meet people and offer opinions and banter about what do one feels about the world and the different ways one can see it. That's why it is said, “A pictures is worth a thousand words“.

Photography as an Art

Be it a painter or a sculptor, nature has always been the first inspiration for any artist. Anything that an artist creates is from the inspiration that he gathers from his life and surroundings. All artists try and bring a part of nature into their art forms. For ages, the inspiration from nature has been evident. From the "Inlay Work" of the Mughal era to the more recent Opera house in Sydney, the inspiration has been flowers. Artists through the years have tried and made nature a part of their lives. It's been a conscious effort on the part of humans to bring the natural flora and fauna around them into their inspiration and give them their own touch, thereby creating masterpieces of art.

If we look back in history, we will find many kings and emperors, who used to have inclinations towards art still hold important positions in society be it Shah Jahan for Taj Mahal or Qutub bu din Ebak for Qutub Minar. The only reason why their names are immortal is because they created places of social and artistic importance, which were also a visual delight. In history, any king who constructed roads, baolis, and forts or any other place of architectural importance, they were considered good rulers; for example of the Pyramids of Egypt, hanging gardens of Babylon or the Taj Mahal itself.

And the same holds true for photography!

In the simplest of terms, photography is nothing but freezing a moment in time. But what exactly that our camera captured was a fraction of the time in our life. Be it landscape, wildlife or street. We are getting inspired and capturing the essence of nature around us. Our life and nature are entwined together and an artist strives to find that streak of inspiration. Every picture is an effort to capture the truest essence of life around you. And life is nothing but nature. We might choose various angles and points of view, but the crux is that we are trying to capture life.

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Diplomatist Magazine was launched in October of 1996 as the signature magazine of L.B. Associates (Pvt) Ltd, a contract publishing house based in Noida, a satellite town of New Delhi, India, the National Capital.