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Your photographs can be more

Hunny Awatramani: On ways to present your photos

When I started photography in 2014 on my phone, I never realised the potential it holds to show what the photographer feels. Since I have always been a homebody the genre I was interested in was conceptual art which resulted in a phase where I was only photographing the colour blue and this lasted 4 years before I moved on from the medium. In 2019, I gave up photography altogether and studied fashion. However, I never stopped taking photos and saw that my photography became more fun because I didn’t feel the pressure to perform well.

Once you get rid of the tag that you are a photographer, you’ll be free in what you create.

In 2020, during the first lockdown, I worked on my old discarded photos. Leftovers emerged as a way to get crafty with my photos. You can view my project here. The series made me dwell on what more can be done within the domain of Photography. Here are other techniques you can add to make your photos interesting to look at.

  • Adding music/sounds to your photo slideshow. This is a simple and hassle-free way to add a new layer to your audience's photo-viewing experience. The images in the video below didn’t hold enough weight as singular photos, but grouping them together and adding music gave them a different personality. So look for images that may not stand out on their own, put them together and maybe the sound or music can enhance their meaning.

Flâneuse © Hunny Awatramani

  • Photo Manipulation. Print your photos and don’t discard the ones that you don’t like. Archive all of them. During the lockdown when we had nowhere to go and I was done with making photos around my house, I resorted to my discarded pile of printed photos and made them. Maybe there is a story waiting for you.

From the series "Leftovers", © Hunny Awatramani

  • Moving Images. My recent work focuses on keeping my camera still and letting things happen in the frame. This idea came to me while shooting slow shutter photos and since slow shutters add some movement to the images, I thought what if it was the other way around? What if I make videos/gifs that look like they are photos? You can check out more on my Instagram.

  • Cyanotype print. I have yet to try this one, but Siddhart Kaneria, a photographer from India has mastered the art and has been working on it. For this, you need a lot of materials and it’s a fairly extensive yet very satisfying method. The tangibility of the whole process makes it an immersive experience. Check out the whole process here, documented by a very talented cinematographer, Bhavik Kadecha who is currently studying at Mindscreen Film Institute.

Bial Art Programme, Bangalore © Siddhart Kaneria

  • Diptychs, triptychs, and polyptychs can get you out of a creative slump. They can inspire you to reinvent your portfolio and teach you how sets can change the way photos interact with each other.

From Zine Human Nature, © Hunny Awatramani

  • Painting over photos. If you’re feeling too artistic and don’t mind getting your hands messy, you can try painting over your photos either in photoshop or over your photo prints. Aliza Razell creates beautiful narratives in her mixed-media photographs by combining self-portraits with splashes of colour to produce strange and mystifying images that cannot fully be explained.

© Aliza Razell

  • Analogue collages. Those magazines that have been lying around your house, Get them! Analog collage-making can be very therapeutic and fun. I personally love doing things with my hands, and just re-creating with the limited material you already have is even more interesting. The photo below was created from a collection of my own photos, but there is no rule that the material has to be yours. You can experiment with all sorts of magazines, newspapers and different texture papers. It’s not as easy as it looks. And if cutting up your magazines gives you horror you can always use Photoshop. For more interesting works check out Agatak Rek’s world of mixed media.

Power Play, © Hunny Awatramani

Radically Vulnerable art, © Agatak Rek

  • Zines. My first zine called “Passenger Seat” was only 10 pages. I made it to see if I have the potential to stitch a story together and also learn Indesign. It wasn’t that great but now it has become a series I am still working on called “Window Seat” wherein I take pictures from my seat while travelling. Ted Forbes has a great Youtube Channel where he showcases Zines he receives from photographers all over the world. Check it out for your first zine inspiration. Another page I personally love is called Nice Zines.

Museum Bhavan, © Dayanita Singh

  • Tote Bags, T-shirts and more. Lastly don’t stop there. Your photos can be in any form beyond the ones mentioned. Be as creative as you want. This tote bag is by Vinita, who is a contemporary photographer based in Goa. You can reach her out here if you would like to buy this tote bag.

© Vinita Barretto


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