From pharmacy to photography Lakshmi is healing hearts with M’spirations
A piece about the life of Lakshmi Wankhede, a brilliant artist always aiming for the top. She believes that each shot that she puts her efforts in; shall be perfect. In our candid Bluetook interview she shares some of her experiences and thoughts.
1. How did you enter into the line of photography?
I never thought of photography as a career. I have pursued many educational fields and naturally, I made up my mind on building a career in one of those because of the background I come from. I always admired maternity shoots and so later on when I was in South Korea and I was expecting, I planned a shoot for myself which turned out to be an inspirational experience. I was more inclined towards photography after that and pursued it starting with a one-year diploma from Udaan school of photography.
2. How has the lockdown period impacted your business?
Conducting scheduled shoots has become more difficult because of the risk but I try to maintain my distance and strictly sterilize my equipment. I am not taking up wedding assignments as of now to take care of clients as well as my safety. I am doing kids’ shoots more. I have restricted the usage of props too to avoid any risk for the kids. I encourage parents to get their props if they insist . . I use an 85mm lens which is naturally far off from the subject and helps to avoid any physical contact which may not be beneficial for both, my clients and me.
3. Tell us about your first commercial shoot?
My first paid shoot was a maternity shoot three years back in India. Keeping photography in mind, the culture here in India was very different as compared to South Korea. I had a lot of ideas and admired work in mind but as it was my first shoot I was quite nervous. The results motivated me to do better and made me realize my capabilities. I was proud of my work but at the same time, I knew I had a long way to go.
4. What is your favourite genre of photography?
I provide my clients with each kind of genre of photography may it be maternity shoots, pre-wedding shoots, wedding shoots, etc. but the closest to my heart is family shoots as I love to portray kids into my work. Their innocence and sweet smiles are enough to melt hearts and capturing moments like these make photography special for me.
5. Do you think having advanced Lens gears matters?
Photography is not about the equipment and creation does not require heavy technology. I have seen artists in my field with average gear but still capturing some of the most inspiring shots. Imaginations and perceptions differ from person to person and I believe that is what makes an artist and his/her work stand out.
6. What are the challenges that you face in the digital age?
My journey started just 3 years ago and the digital leap is yet to happen. I am a quiet social person and I have a few networks of mine. Word of mouth and references was how I promote my business. The digital stage has been very welcome to me but I have a constant urge to do better and step up my work.
7. Mumbai being the city of dreams provides tough competition. How do you create a niche?
Yes, there are a lot of photographers in Mumbai but I feel that the comfort and self-confidence of my clients is something that I am good at providing. I provide them with my best advice and choices as per my experience, pictures are memories that you cherish forever and I believe in making those memories as flawless as they can be.
8.Who do you think is your idol?
I keep looking for more and more inspiration and ideas to make my work better. I love Joseph Radhik as a wedding photographer. I have admired his work a lot. I got my inspiration from his journey as he struggled, stepped out of his comfort zone, and finally opened up his company. I wish to be at that stage someday.
9. Do you prefer having a studio or does freelancing work best for you?
I have my studio to work and some of the professional shoots turn out better when done indoors but shooting outdoors has its own beauty. I would say that during the crucial times that all of us are going through I prefer to shoot outdoors as I like including natural beauty to my work and it is also safer.
10. Five years from now, where do you see yourself?
I want to strive hard and make my content better and better each day. I want to be listed amongst the top 10 photographers and I am doing my best to achieve what I have dreamt of. I believe that I will make my way to the top if I keep on facing and successfully overcoming the challenges that come my way.
For the information of the readers, Lakshmi holds a diploma in commercial photography she has many more educational qualifications like B. Pharmacy, MBA, and a Management Ph.D. degree. She has also been awarded “Entrepreneur of the year” in 2018 by Swayamsiddha. She has worked on many commercial shoots and has three years of experience. If you are looking for true happiness to be captured in your photographs then Lakshmi surely won’t let you down.
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