World Photography Day

A day to celebrate the creativity and nuances of photography that have mesmerised us for years. Photography is a timeless medium of storytelling that beautifully captures the authenticity of time, emotions, culture, history, and more.

World Photography Day is celebrated annually on August 19 and is dedicated to the art, craft, science, and history of photography. To commemorates this medium, let’s checkout these mesmerizing images which are part of MAP’s exquisite collection of iconic photographs by renowned photographers like Jyoti Bhatt, Karen Knorr, T. S. Satyan, Mitter Bedi, and more.

Rajasthan by Jyoti Bhatt, 1973, Silver gelatin print, Rajasthan, India, PHY.00596

This image was photographed by Jyoti Bhatt in Rajasthan in 1973. It shows a clever juxtaposition representing the relationship between prey and predator using art and everyday life.

The Queen’s Room, Zanana, Udaipur City Palace, Udaipur by Karen Knorr, 2010, Archival pigment print, Udaipur, India, PHY.01765

This image forms part of the project ‘India Song’, which was started by British-American photographer Karen Knorr in 2008. It shows a digitally inserted peacock standing in a passage of the Zenana Mahal in the City Palace, Udaipur.

The project seeks to explore ideas of caste, femininity and hierarchy intertwined with the rich cultural heritage of Rajasthan by connecting the royal spaces to the animal world with a harmonious combination of digital and analogue photography.

This photograph by Sebastiao Salgado shows three coal workers from one of the coal mines of Dhanbad in Bihar, India. Forming part of Salgado’s social documentary oeuvre, the image provides a glimpse of the working communities and the state of their immediate environments.

This is a portrait of H. H. Maharaja of Jaipur Ram Singh, G.C.S.I. Photographed by one of the oldest photography studios in the world, Bourne & Shepherd, the image shows Maharaja Sawai Ram Singh II of Jaipur. Accessioning as king at the age of sixteen months, Sawai Ram Singh was known as a reformist ruler. He was also an avid photographer, with an interest in portraiture and landscapes, having gained the reputation of the ‘Photographer Prince’.

This is a studio portrait of Maharaja Sir Bhagwati Prasad Singh of Balrampur taken by the studio Johnston & Hoffmann. The royal portrait presents an excellent example of hand-painted photographs, where the artists have beautifully brought out the beauty and richness of clothes, jewels and the furniture.

This photograph is part of a collaborative project between Pushpamala N and Claire Arni called ‘Native Women of South India: Manners and Customs’. Belonging to the sub-series called ‘The Native Types’, the images in the collection look at popular tropes and representations of women from South India through a performative angle. This particular image called ‘Lakshmi’ is modeled after an oleograph by late modernist painter Raja Ravi Varma.

This studio photograph is from the extensive work of Suhag Studio in Nagda, Madhya Pradesh, India, owned and operated by photographer Suresh Punjabi. The image shows a woman posing with a bunch of fake grapes. It was common practice for photo studios to keep props and costumes for customers, providing them with the space and opportunity to be playful, wishful and explore their own imagery.

This photograph taken by the late Indian photographer T. S. Satyan shows women at work in the Indian Telephone Factory, Bangalore in the late 20th century. The women appear to be assembling telephones on their stations. The image shows a great example of women’s workforce in technical fields in a rapidly transforming India.

This photograph was taken by late Indian photographer Mitter Bedi that shows an industrial setup of possibly Hindustan Unilever from 1961. Mitter Bedi was India’s most notable commercial and industrial photographer who paved the way for the upcoming generations. In a time, when India as a newly independent nation was going through a rapid phase of industrialization, Mitter Bedi became the most sought after photographer to chronicle this growth in various sectors like oil, textile, paper, sugar, mining etc. with his photography.

This image shows the Manikarnika Ghat on the bank of river Ganga with the Gyanvapi Mosque visible in the view. The mosque was built by Mughal ruler Aurangzeb in 1669. In the foreground, large stacks of firewood can also be seen, which were possibly used for cremation purposes. (IANS)

Involve Your Kids In Happier Activities To Reduce Screen Time

“I miss the good old busy mornings of packing lunch, braiding my daughter’s hair, nagging my son to be ready on time and dropping them off at the bus stop. What replaces all this is screens. Lunch boxes come in the form of meals served on study tables, staring at gadgets,” says Divya Singh Vishwanath, Lifestyle Blogger and Stylist. But what is the solution? School is online and so are submissions’, extra classes and social activities. This is worrying, but Divya suggests some fun solutions to reduce screen-time:

* Board games: Get a few that interests the kids, as children of all ages enjoy these and there are so many available; something is sure to work. The best is to involve them in choosing. You could teach them a few card games or tricks as well.

* Art: Works great even if neither of you is artistic. You could even make a board game like snakes and ladders and knots and crosses at home. It gets the kids all excited and off the screen. Try paper-mache or pottery or simple paint and paper. Mandala art books are a good idea. Even if nothing comes out of the craft sessions, you and your kids have had a lot of fun and that counts.

* Puzzles: Kids of all ages love puzzles and every possible puzzle is available online.

* Cooking: Making dinner or evening snacks and cleaning up could be a part of family activity. Your meals will be delicious, it’s good bonding time, kids will learn about nutrition, you would have kept them away from screens and the food will finish without a fuss.

* Dancing: How about a little workout before bed? And what better way to do that than a quick dance! It’s fun and good exercise.

* Reading time: Get your kids to read every day. Discussing the story afterwards is super fun. Change a scenario in the book and ask them to add to the story. If not the book, give them any situation and ask them to make a story around it. You will be surprised at the ideas they come up with.

* Make studying fun: With lockdown, life is boring for them as it is. Make studies fun, I taught my kids simple addition and subtraction by playing snakes and ladders. We wrote alphabets on rocks and made words; a box of dice was used to do math sums; word blocks were used to make sentences; a candy for every paragraph written; words followed by a small drawing; a representation of a story/essay through a drawing. It’s tough but you will manage.

* Routine: This is very important for kids and for grownups (of course with some flexibility). In my experience, a set waking up time and sleeping time is a good start.

* Physical Activity: Try making them play a sport every day, be it a trek or a run, a long walk, tennis, badminton, anything that can be arranged. It’s good for their health, their energy gets used up and they sleep well. If nothing is possible, get innovative. Hide the puzzle pieces around the house and ask them to find it and all to be done without pausing. A treasure hunt around the house is a good idea too. So is climbing stairs. Just a few examples.

* Conversation: Talk to them. Share how your day went and ask them to do the same. No bond is built better than by talking and listening. Ask them for their thoughts on certain decisions you need to take. It’s beautiful to hear their views and opinions on things and situation. (IANS)

How To Make The Perfect Online Dating Profile

Visiting a bar, going for a picnic in a garden or drinking a coffee in a cafe are all nice ways to meet strangers in Hollywood and Bollywood movies but in real life, societal compulsions and constraints make the youth turn to dating apps, where they feel they can be themselves without being judged or elbowed. Moreover, dating apps offer the option to display more than your face and physique. While using these apps, you can give people a glimpse into what you like, dislike, what your hobbies and passions are and probably what your personality is like– things which would elude a person in love at first sight.

Since dating app profiles go beyond just looks, it is essential that they have substance to them. Describing what kind of a person you are not just with pictures but also with your bio, by talking about your interests, etc. can give other users a more dynamic impression of you than the one based on just your appearance. According to a survey conducted by QuackQuack, one of India’s leading dating apps, users responded to questions on what makes for a perfect dating profile for them when they are liking and crushing on the app.

What are the elements of a good bio for you

Most of the people in the age group of 18-30, 72 per cent agree that an eye-catching bio is short, concise, and to the point. “Bios are supposed to be funny and attractive, not long and boring like autobiographies”, said one of the QuackQuack users. With a short span of attention, the youth does not look forward to reading long paragraphs about one person when they could just simply skip their profile. For people above 30, 56 per cent of the users prefer reading about the career, life achievements and goals of their matches as opposed to 44 per cent of them who prefer quirky bios. Men, 45 per cent of them, agree that shorter the bio, the better in contrast to 64 per cent of women who instead like longer bios. People from tier 2 cities like reading longer bios with more details to them and elements that demarcate them from the rest of the users whereas people from metros choose short and funny descriptions instead.

What would you like to see in their pictures

When the question of pictures uploaded on dating apps was brought up, 67 percent of 18-30 year olds said that pictures should be a reflection of what a person does on a regular basis and how they are in real life. To put it simply, pictures of hanging out with friends, pictures of engaging in your favourite activities and sports and pictures that give a sneak peek into who you are. For 87 per cent of men, full length body pictures of users without their entourage was a priority while 59 per cent of women showed preference for pictures with pets. Forty per cent of tier 2 city folks showed no aversion to the use of filters in the pictures uploaded by other users whereas 62 per cent of metropolitan folks did.

Talking about the survey, Ravi Mittal, CEO of QuackQuack said, “Today, dating apps are the first choice of any person who wishes to make friends or look for a partner and it is imperative that the profile of users seems striking and attractive.”

What makes their profile unique for you

Fifty-two per cent of people in the age group of 18-30 concur that honesty is what makes a person’s profile unique and stand out from the rest. A bio that is written by a person himself is likely to get more likes than the one filled with cliches. Moreover, copied or similar bios are a huge no for the majority of young QuackQuack users. As for men, no mention of past relationships is what ticks all the right boxes for them. Fifty-nine per cent of men agree that they wouldn’t like a profile that talks about their ex(es). For women, humbleness was a key factor. A Mr. I, Me, Myself who is all about himself would have his profile skipped by 66 per cent of women. For people in metro cities, good grammar was something that made a profile unique for 74 per cent of them in contrast to 42 per cent of people in tier 2 cities.