Now Reading
Interview with India’s Award-Winning and Captivating Photographer Aishwarya Sridhar

Interview with India’s Award-Winning and Captivating Photographer Aishwarya Sridhar

Riddhi Bhattacharya

Hello Reader, 

aishwarya

I am Riddhi Bhattacharya, a student, freelance blogger and writer and editor at The Teen Pop Magazine. My passion resides in etching down feelings of my heart and notions of my mind – conveying them to the world with my speeches, debates, articles and blog posts. 

Today I am in conversation with India’s first and youngest woman to win Wildlife Photographer of the Year Award!

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Interview with Aishwarya Sridhar

When and how was the “I want to capture moments” feeling and awakening?

As a child, growing up in a home that was surrounded by greenery really kindled the interest in wildlife. What started as observation slowly evolved into the ‘I want to capture these moments’ feeling. When I saw my first tiger in the wild and the moment our eyes locked, something happened and that was the awakening moment for me.

Seeing this majestic tiger walking towards me, changed my perspective about wildlife in general. I began to understand them on a deeper level. A few months after spotting my first tiger, I read about a tiger poaching incident that deeply affected me. I penned a poem but it couldn’t get published due to a lack of imagination. That moment made me understand the power of photographs. So when I got my first camera as a birthday gift, I was overjoyed. It became my favorite companion in my adventures since then.

Do you remember your first shot? What was it?

Yes!! I do!! It was a sub-adult tigress. We had gone to Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve and I had just received my camera and I was so excited to click tigers. And on my first safari, I spotted this family of 4 sub-adult cubs lazing in a water body. So I went berserk clicking!

How do you prepare for your trips? 

I first research the place and the species which I would be concentrating on. That helps me understand the whole scenario before going to click directly. I also speak to a couple of my friends/local guides to understand the place better and then plan my trip accordingly. 

Lioness with kill Aishwarya Sridhar

What equipment do you use?

Canon 5D Mark iii, Canon 1Dx Mark ii, Canon 100-400mm Lens, Canon 16-35 Lens. 

How long do you spend to wait and capture that one moment, that one moment that communicates it all? 

It really depends upon your subject actually. Sometimes, you have to wait for hours/days to get the perfect shot you visualised. I remember I had to wait for years to get a shot of Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher feeding its chicks. On the other hand, there have been times, when I have just entered a national park, and the frame I had in mind has presented itself immediately. 

Do you spend a lot of time editing your work?

Nope. I don’t. I prefer to keep the images looking natural. But sometimes it’s good to edit certain types of pictures to create a magical feeling. 

Harrier Aishwarya Sridhar

What was your biggest challenge so far? What is your worst souvenir? Best souvenir?

Breaking into the industry and having the right platform to showcase your work has been the biggest challenge so far. For a newcomer it’s difficult to get the right exposure. Nowadays technical advancement has made photography relatively easier than what it was years ago. But it is difficult to keep yourself up to date with all these advancements, which is another challenge as its financially draining. 

 As far as my best souvenir goes, it is a flamingo feather that I collected while birding at a local wetland. My worst souvenir was a pair of shoes that were so badly damaged after I got stuck in quicksand. 

How important is photography to you?

Photography is an integral part of my personality. My camera is an extension of me! It’s a magical weapon which can be used to protect our planet. 

What is your style of photography like and what do you wish to convey with your photographs?

My style of photography leans more on creativity and using images to tell stories of wildlife. Since I click a range of subjects within wildlife including mammals, birds, insects, etc. I tend to have a mixture of close-up portraits that reveal the personality of these creatures as well as snap them in their habitat which reveals a bit about their home as well. I hope to use my images and films to inspire conservation and policy-level impact which will protect our wildlife.

Leopard Aishwarya Sridhar

What advice would you give someone who would like to become a photographer today?

Practice till you become perfect. The more you spend time with your camera, the more you will master it. Secondly, think out of the box when it comes to compositions. Creativity is highly appreciated in photography. 

What can you tell us about the series of pictures you clicked that was eventually nominated for the Wildlife Photographer of the Year?

The image represents the dance of a million fireflies under the starlit sky. It captures their magical bioluminescence as the males synchronize their flashes in a bid to attract females for mating. This courtship ritual is very unique and one can witness this in India for a very short period of time. So the image showcases the fireflies in their element and at their best, against the darkness of the night. The picture stands for the splendor and mystery of Nature. 

As a child, I remember marveling at fireflies (Lampyridae) on my balcony and running to catch them. But with climate change happening at an alarming rate the firefly population has seen a sharp decline with just a few pockets left in the wild. So, when an opportunity presented itself to photograph them in the wild, I went along gladly. I am working on documenting the smaller (macro) world of India so the fireflies form an integral part of this world. Hence, I went to photograph them as I feel that most people only concentrate around larger mammals and birds when we talk about nature; the tiny creatures are overlooked. I want to highlight their beauty and role in our ecosystem. 

How was the surreal feeling of being nominated amongst 50, 000 submissions from over 80 countries?

I literally jumped with joy when I got to know that my image was awarded in the competition. This year has been very special for India as 7 other wildlife photographers have also been awarded in the competition with me. So It’s a very special year for Indian wildlife photography. 

You are the first Indian woman to win at the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Award, what do you think is the position and stance of Indian women in the Photography Fraternity?

Its improving although there is still a long way to go. There are mental blocks in the society which compartmentalise women as being homemakers or undertaking ‘safe’ desk jobs. People don’t see women in these kind of roles. So its important to break these stereotypes. Some of the finest photographers in the world happen to be women. 

Rapid Fire

  1. What was the dreamiest place you have ever shot at?
    Bhandardara
  2. Which shoot was the hardest, tiresome and long?
    Shooting tigers in the super hot summers of Central India. 
  3. Where in the world do you one day wish to shoot at?
    Masai Mara
  4. You live in Mumbai, what is the best place to shoot in Mumbai?
    Uran and Talawe wetlands. 
  5. What’s the prettiest species according to you?
    All of them are pretty in their own ways. 
  6. What’s the best thing about being tucked away in the laps of nature?
    The feeling of bliss when you are standing alone listening to the sounds of the jungle. 

Ways to Reach Aishwarya Sridhar

Ways to Reach Riddhi Bhattacharya 

You can also access our recent interviews with Amanda Nguyen Hammond, Raheemat Sofola, Achala RaiUtsa Madan, Adrija Mukherjee, Shubhangi RastogiDipankana DasMisty RohatgiMehreen SaigalFeyisara OdukoyaAmelie MartinezLisa NathAnamika PunjabiShivani BafnaMarce Pedrozo Bhushita and BhavikaIsilda Da Costa, Alice OrionMazel JMel TerrofrancaYash TiwariHiba Zaidi , Bridget Moore,  Hanifa HameedLindsay WhiteAlan KuriakoseAntonio RomeroOmotunde SogunleKhushi GadhviSanskruti BalgudeJessica Parker KennedyTom WlaschihaTaaha ShahValerie and AlexIndiana MehtaReMix Reek, and Kira Rizavi. These interviews range over a variety of topics such as BLM, Fashion, Sports, Wellness, Writing, Feminism, BLM, Rap, Acting, Travel, Dance and Music!

You can also check out some games played with our celebrities:
Song Dictionary with Pratibha Singh Baghel
Song Dictionary with Kira Rizavi
Song Dictionary with Pakhi Singhal

You can also check out Grow with The Teen Pop Initiative interviews, where we support NGOs in whatsoever ways possible!
– Sandali Srivastava from Virtuskool
– Yousef Areda from Raise4Refugees 
 Varya Yadav from Cards in Kindness
– Debargha Roy from Project Saathi

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award. Aishwarya Aishwarya Aishwarya Aishwarya Aishwarya Aishwarya Auishwarya AIshwarya AIshwaya A Aishwarya

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

Aishwarya Sridhar is an Indian wildlife photographer, wildlife presenter, and documentary filmmaker. She is the youngest girl to have won the Sanctuary Asia- Young Naturalist Award and the International Camera Fair. She recently won the ‘Highly Commended’ award at the Wildlife Photography of the Year 2020. The 23-year old’s photo titled Lights of Passion was chosen among 50,000 entries from over 80 countries worldwide. She also became the first Indian to win the coveted award.

What's Your Reaction?
Excited
0
Happy
0
In Love
0
Not Sure
0
Silly
0
View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll To Top