Travelling and Photography
People surprise me! You know, we keep looking around for something that leaves us awestruck and inspire us in some way; for me, it is people and their beautiful stories. Believe me, nothing leaves me more humbled and stumped than stories of people who listened to their heart. Take Leslin Bastian[Facebook] [Twitter] for example. This guy is an arts graduate and a master in mass communications who has fallen in love with Travelling and Photography. Amazing, right?
“Tell me something about yourself?” I ask and then almost kick myself for asking a job interview kind of question.
“I was born in a city known as the Queen of the Arabian Sea (Kochi) and then migrated here (Ahmedabad, Gujarat) later. May be that’s why travelling fascinates me so much. Seeing people, watching the locations outside the window, the cool breeze; I think I fell in love with it all long back.”
Even if you would randomly mention some place to him and asked him to join you, he will set off just like that (provided he has his camera).
For a guy who is so passionate about travelling, photography comes naturally. But like they say, “clicking a couple of pictures and editing them, doesn’t make every person a photographer.”
“How did it all start; your love for Photography?”
“My sister got her first SLR out of her interest for the same. It was so fascinating to hold that camera, check out its features and just go about clicking, you know. But then, I was just asked to keep my hands off it (sighs). Gradually, I developed a genuine interest for it. The whole young boy fascination with shiny gadgets was gone and I really wanted to explore possibilities here. I am still learning”, he smiles.
Travelling is always fun and exposes is to various cultures and lifestyles of people. But then, to always set off like that, to always be away and literally live in and out of bags could be really taxing and scary for most of us. It takes a lot to do that this often and all of it just for the love of photography and travelling.
“Isn’t it tiring?” I inquire.
he says. “I would rather be here than anywhere else. The kind of cultures, lifestyles and people I have seen has taught me much more than what people learn in classrooms. I have always believed in experiencing the ‘feel’ of things rather than reading about how someone else felt it.”
“It’s my passion,”
“Go on”, I say while I am still marveling at the beauty of his words.
“I love taking images of people, historical monuments and street life, you know. There’s a story in everything and also a possibility that this may or may not be here tomorrow. I don’t like missing it when it’s gone. So, I capture it in my camera forever. Someday I want to say that I have captured all of India’s beauty in my camera. But for now I want to explore my hometown Kochi’s beauty. There’s a lot to do.”
“What’s that image you absolutely love?” I ask all excited.
“It’s this one. I took it while passing by Munnar Elephant Park. I love this one the most, for now.”
His work is stunning, but he feels he has a very long way to go and loads to learn.
“All these years of Travelling and Photography; what has it taught you?” I wonder
“Travelling has taught me to be patient. If you are going to be jumpy and expect everything to be in a particular direction, it’s going to disappoint you. Travelling teaches you to be ready for the unexpected and the unexpected is not always bad, believe me. Photography taught me the love for art and how to find and appreciate beauty in the simplest of things. I am still learning though.”
“What’s the most perfect image you have captured by far?” I ask.
“Still looking for one”, he smiles.
And just like the simplicity of Leslin’s story and his ability to appreciate beauty in simple things enchants me. It takes a huge deal to listen to your heart and do something for the love of it and not look back. And while I sit over the laptop and write his story, he is probably planning his next trip to some place where the land reflects the sky and the kids play around on green lands all day. Such is life!