Pubarun Basu - The Journey behind photography
Pubarun Basu says, “My parents told me that I was 2 when I held a camera for the first time. At 4 I was visiting a fair at Shantiniketan. While the whimsical folk dances captivated my attention, baba handed me his camera and said ‘go crazy with it!’. That day, I went on to click my first ever picture! Later, we even got the prints developed; I have those to date!
Baba is also a photographer. So, I’d often experiment with his camera. He bought me my first camera when I was 10. Be it clicking our family portraits during the vacations or our stroll to river Ganga during Mahalaya – Baba always had some handy tips and tricks for me.
Soon, I started taking the camera out by myself. I’d wander around our neighborhood capturing the sunsets, the people, and much more. Outdoor photography was my niche. So, when the lockdown was announced last year, I was bummed. To uplift my mood, I got myself enrolled in a photography course offered by The Museum of Modern Arts, New York. Post that my approach as a photographer was completely changed.
A few months later The Sony World Photography Competition was announced. I was perplexed when they announced the theme for that month. Being locked up in the house I wasn’t sure if I’ll raft my way through indoor photography. Trying to seek inspiration around the same four walls seemed mundane.
And one day, I was passing by my parents’ bedroom. The curtains at their window struck me visually. So, I asked my Mom ‘I have a picture in mind. Can you go behind those curtains and hold up your hands for a while?’. Later that day when I was looking at the pictures, I was addled if they’d even make it to the top. But, I went ahead and submitted ‘the picture’.
It’s funny how I almost didn’t win the competition because I forgot to check my email. They’d been sending me confirmation mail for months but didn’t get a reply from me; they finally had to DM me on the day of announcement. I was on cloud 9! Mom had tears rolling down her eyes, even baba got a bit emotional when I gave them the good news. It was hands down one of the best moments of my life!
However, nothing feels better than a long walk along the river with Baba, learning all the tricks of the trade from the master himself.”