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Retro Kolkata Exclusive : Interview with the Travel & Landscape Photographer Devender Meena



I believe, outdoors gives one the opportunity to explore and learn about very little Details, From how light and shadow plays to how colours and contrast can lift your pictures and gives one the insight to minute details of very basic photography.

Retro Kolkata : First of all, thank you for accepting our invitation for an interview. Please say something about you. What first attracted you to photography? When did you start shooting and how did this love for photography happen?

Devender : I’m Devender Meena, and currently based in Delhi. I am a Travel and landscape Photographer and Photography Mentor . I was mesmerized by how nature turns its colours and that kind of pulled me into Photography and I have been capturing and chasing sunsets since 2014.


Image © Devender Meena

Retro Kolkata : How important is photography for you? Would you have imagined a few years ago that this passion would have played such an important role in your life today?

Devender :It’s an integral part of my life, on some days it’s my passion and on other days when life seems dull, it puts in its colors and makes life a little easy and happening. To be honest, I had not imagined photography to play such an important role in my life, back then I was just chasing sunsets because “acha lagta hai”.


Retro Kolkata : Who and what inspires you to keep creating and exploring?

Devender : Nature and its landscape have been my biggest inspiration to create and to explore more.


Image © Devender Meena

Retro Kolkata : It seems like you have a deep connection to nature and that this has sparked your love for photography. How important do you believe it is for a photographer to love the outdoors, not just the results?

Devender : I believe, outdoors gives one the opportunity to explore and learn about very little Details, From how light and shadow plays to how colors and contrast can lift your pictures and gives one the insight to minute details of very basic photography.


Retro Kolkata : What makes landscape photography so special for you?

Devender : It’s the journey of reaching the view point and first capturing how the scene turns with your own eyes and then to capture it with a lens that makes it special. Each viewpoint has a story attached to it and a history attached to it.


Image © Devender Meena

Retro Kolkata : In terms of camera equipment, what are you currently using and what do you hope to add to your camera bag at some point in the future?

Devender : Currently I’m using a Canon 1300D, 18-55mm and mobile phone. As a matter of fact, the equipment does not really matter, what matters is how the person perceives and works with what’s in hand. If the need comes to having a gear of a sort then in future I hope to use any camera which has good low light performance capabilities .


Retro Kolkata : Do you pre-visualise and plan your shoots down to the smallest detail, or do you prefer to create images spontaneously?

Devender : Yes, everything is planned. I pre-visualize the whole scene as it matters what the viewpoint is, and also the timing of sunrise/sunsets play a very important role in my schedules.


Image © Devender Meena

Retro Kolkata : Have there been times that you’ve had to revisit your favourite places many times to achieve the required result? Can you tell us more about your method of working?

Devender : I have been visiting Pushkar for the last 3 years to capture a variety of clouds. In the first 2 years the clouds weren’t there much, but now I have been getting the desired results. And as said earlier, I pre-visualize the whole scene as it matters what the viewpoint is, and also the timing of sunrise/sunsets play a very important role in my schedules.


Retro Kolkata : In your opinion, what makes a great image stand out from the good ones?

Devender : It’s the perspective of the viewer that matters, otherwise each and every image is unique in its own way. But, an iconic image would be one which represents the photographer’s style. It could be an image or an entire project too.


Image © Devender Meena

Retro Kolkata : What is your dream assignment?

Devender : I would like to capture monuments across India with the perfect lighting and for that I would love to collaborate with Incredible India in the future.


Retro Kolkata : Apart from photography, do you have interest in other creative activities?

Devender : As of now, no. Photography still tops the list of my creative pursuits.


Retro Kolkata : Do you have any pieces of advice for young photographers interested in photography but who want to earn a living?

Devender : The only advice would be to have your basics strong and to keep working on your skills. And on a side note, don’t run towards the trends. Make your skill a trend and keep chasing it.


Image © Devender Meena

Retro Kolkata : We (Retro Kolkata) are trying to build one single stage for all the artists, because we believe that artists are the most beautiful creation of God and geographical boundaries can never break their unity and harmony. Please say something about our initiative and any special message for your followers.

Devender : You guys are doing a wonderful job curating this stage for the artists and I hope this reaches a lot more people. And a message for my followers would be to “Keep clicking, keep improving.”


 

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