Progear Features Interview
Can you please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about how you started taking photos?
Hey there! I'm Shovik and am an AUT graphic design graduate who loves photography. Growing up, I was always fascinated by the cinematic experiences in movies - use of lighting, colour grading, frame compositions, set designs, props. And I absolutely love travelling. Initially, visual arts was something that interested me most - tried to paint landscapes, illustrate movie stills, draw caricatures from magazine cutouts; but all these processes seemed very tedious and time consuming. I wanted to showcase multiple forms of art without spending too much time having to do it. This is when I picked up my first camera. All I had to do then was go outside and click away! It also happens to be the best decision I made.
You studied graphic design. Do you think this has helped to inform the way you compose your images?
Absolutely! In graphic design, we were introduced (and exposed) to a wide range of creative media - illustration, typography, movie making, sculpture, life drawing and of course photography. When composing my images, I combine small aspects out of all these disciplines. When shooting portraiture, I draw inspiration from online and print advert compositions; when travelling, it is from movie/video compositions.
What other sources do you draw inspiration from?
Everything in the name of art really - many different creative fields. I look into fine art prints, architecture, calligraphy, cinemagraphs, documentary photography and even culinary arts. I don't have any particular favourites out of those, but on the contrary I get put off when I notice any design flaws in art projects. This is why I experiment a fair bit with my image presentation - on social media and print.
The most exciting period for me is when I'm about 2 weeks away from a trip. This is when I look through all the travel videos on Vimeo, explore different projects on Behance to draw inspiration from - hypes me up for the travel even more!
Travel photography is often about trying to capture the 'essence' of a place. What do you immediately look for to bring that across in your photographs? Is it the architecture, the landscapes, a portrait of a person you met? etc.
Each of the places I've visited thus far - United States, India, Australia, Middle-East, Europe, the Islands are all very different to another. The culture, architecture, surroundings and the people are all so different. This is what I try to showcase and portray in my photographs. The people I travel with also have a great influence - it was very hard to allocate time for any setups at night in Vegas, while travelling along with three mates and a few bottles!
I treat photography as a medium to relive all the memories.
Besides your camera, do you have any other 'essential' photographic items that you can't travel without?
Spare memory cards and my macbook. I try to go through and edit the photos on the same day to keep all the vibes and energy alive from that place.
You've just been given an assignment to shoot a travel story, what country do you hope you're being sent to?
Out of all the countries I've visited thus far, I've only been happy with the photos I took in United States, India, Australia and the Islands. I didn't know a lot about photography when we went around Egypt and Europe; so that's definitely right up there on the to-do list. But if I were to pick just one country for an assignment, it'd definitely be United States! I absolutely loved it there and would be very keen to spend some more time exploring around.
Where can people see more of your work?
I've only just started to become a regular Instagrammer and am loving it - @shovik_n. My personal portfolio - shoviknandi.com and Facebook - facebook.com/shoviknandiphotography.