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August 25, 2016

Take a Peek Into Raghu Rai’s New Book Of Portraits

Text by Huzan Tata. Photographs by Raghu Rai

The ace photographer’s talks about his latest tome and his craft

For him, compiling a book of one’s work is a wholesome experience, akin to producing a feature film. One of India’s most celebrated photojournalists, Raghu Rai recently released an arresting collection of portraits — of personalities ranging from Indira Gandhi and Raj Kapoor to Zakir Hussain and Kiran Nagarkar. In the introduction, Rai writes about his love for candid and monochrome images and his most-loved subjects. And what follows are pages of stunning images that hold both your attention and fancy. The Padma Shri award-winner talks to Verve about his creations and his craft….

On black and white photography
“It depends on each subject I am handling, especially in portraiture. You don’t want any distraction of colour unless it is controlled — it takes away from the strength of the person you’re taking a picture of.”

On his favourite muse
“The Dalai Lama. Being a religious leader, he lives in a space of compassion and commitment to mankind. I have never seen or met god, but I am sure Buddha, Christ or Guru Nanak must have been like him.”

On portraiture
“Throw the ‘thinking’ out of your head, and let your heart connect with the spirit and energy being transmitted through the aura of the person. When you capture that, the portrait is done.”

On people he’d have loved to click
“Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Osho, and more of Satyajit Ray, Mother Teresa and His Holiness the Dalai Lama.”

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