Photography is one domain, which is very hard to make a dent in, as there is cutthroat competition, from all quarters, and to make a name for yourself in such a place deserves praise.
We got the exclusive privilege to talk to one of the most renowned& popular photographers in Kolkata. With a dash of his struggles and outright dedication and hard work we present to you Dee Martin, who started his own independent company providing media solutions to the very best in Kolkata. In just a few years he has carved himself a niche clientele. Here is our candid chat with him.
1. Tell us about yourself a bit, and your work.
A) “Martin Photography is a brand & renowned name and one of the most popular nightlife photographer in town. I started my journey back in the year 2014 when I bought my first DSLR and started clicking. Street Photography is always been my passion. I started clicking for nightlife and commercial branding and I am also into wedding photography which helped my work to get recognised all over the city. Most importantly I am into nightlife and music festival photography. I have been associated with all the major Music festivals in Town and some top notch Event Companies in Kolkata.To name few are Mandala Music Festival, Radiance, Afterworld Music Festival, G.O.D – Guradian of Dance Music Festival & few other music festival in the city. I also worked with major Hotels, Pubs, Gastro Pub, and Lounge & Night clubs in our city. To name few of the best properties will be Hotel Hindustan International, Oberoi Grand, The Park, Novotel Hotel (Kolkata), Golden Park Hotel & many more names included. I have engaged myself with nightlife industry for over 3 years now and have clicked in almost all the major nightclubs and events in Kolkata. I had also been the official photographer for the Bollywood Movie premier in the city for “Sanam Re”. Currently I’m covering every Friday night at UG Reincarnated, HHI. & Decible Pool parties on Sunday.”
2. When and how did this journey begin?
- A) “I still remember in March 2014, when I bought my first DSLR (basic one), in my early days I was a Nikon user and presently I am savvy with both Nikon & Canon. I was connected with nightlife since 2012 during my early days of deejaying. In the year 2014,deejaying had a bleak scope in the market and the industry was taking a nosedive somehow. I had few friends who were then into nightlife photography. That somehow made me switch over to photography and started clicking and the journey continues. I believe in recreating memories and so our tag line is “Redefining Memories””
3. Which instance if you had to pick any would you call as the turning point in your life till now?
A) “During my initial days of Photography I used to visit different events in the city and click pictures which helped me a lot to learn about nightlife photography and pick it up from there. I was a freelancer then, and had covered few events in town. I remember first turning point was covering a Holi Event in town in March 2015 for one of the event company which highlighted my work a lot and I was chosen by a renowned Event company called “Decible” as there Official Photographer and since then I am associated with them. I have also been the only Photographer handling 4 major clubs at a time in Kolkata i.e., UG Reincarnated, The Masque Lounge, Illusion Lounge & The Drunken Monkey as their official photographer since 2016.”
A) “I am also into street photography and I love travelling. I love clicking wherever I am, whatever gives me chance to click. But talking about nightlife photography is exclusive. Kolkata is considered to have the best & safest nightlife in our country. And picking up a career as nightlife photographer is not easy when you have so much competition in the Industry. The dedication & motivation towards my work have made me recognised in K-Town as nightlife photographer which make me a peculiar character. Photography is vast and has got varied genres in it. But when you are part of Nightlife, you got to play with the lights in reality. Mostly clubs are dark so there you got to show the real talent of your work. Clicking in nightclubs is fun. Nightlife photography is one of those genres that doesn’t get the credit it deserves. Can you imagine going out almost every night to document the craziness of clubs, parties, concerts, and raves without getting sick of it? It definitely takes dedication and stamina”
5. Tell us a bit about when you were ranked in the top 50 popular photographers of 2016. How was the experience?
A) “It was like one of your dreams had come true. Viewbug.com is one of the leading photography websites where you get to see featured work from all across the world. And getting an official email from them which says that I ranked in the top 50% of most popular photographer in 2016 was simply awesome. Though I have received several awards in viewbug.com. A total of 47 awards, consisting 3 members awards, 23 peer awards & 21 top class awards but getting to know as top 50 popular photographer was awe-inspiring.”
6. We see that you have apart from photography, ventured into full-fledged event management as well as media solutions. How has the experience been?
A) “Event life is simply draining, you know what I mean. Life of a guy handling Events & providing media solution is way beyond innovative. As a pros from short listing ideal venue, documenting the perfect moments, picking up the freshest shots & organizing the right event is a difficult task and to cater all these as pros requires lot of patience…though I lack that (…giggle) is full of adventure and the best part is that it creates happiness for others, for their most important days. We specialize in giving our clients the best value without taking any shortcuts. We deliver the best without compromising on quality. I have been in the event industry for more than 5 years now and I have seen the industry closely, in and out. From sinking to blooming. One thing about this industry is you never know what’s coming up next or what shall be the status of the industry. But still you got to deliver the best of your performance and redefining memories.”
7. Boudoir photography is still in the nascent stages in India, do you feel that this form will find a following?
A) “I doubt that Boudoir photography will ever come into full existence in our country. We are living in a country where people and society judge you by your appearance and the way you carry yourself. For a social growth of boudoir photography in our country firstly we need a growth of mind and start thinking in different way.”
A) “As people look at photos on smaller and smaller screens, there has been a growing trend towards taking photos that are more and more minimalist. Especially on platforms like Instagram, minimalism is exploding; it’s everywhere, and it has been for a while now. There are some pros and cons of minimalism, and I have mixed feelings about how common this trend has become, but there’s no denying its popularity. Being a photographer means being a people person. Each subject must be judged quickly and an appropriate approach taken for each. “I want to dedicate my life to it. I still have long way to go and still got a lot to learn. Photography is vast, you got to learn every day. I still learn with my ongoing work on a daily basis. I will still continue clicking until I lose my sight.”
9. On this journey who has been that constant source of inspiration to you?
A) “To be honest throughout my journey, my work has always been a constant or a true inspiration for me than anyone else. I see my work, I get inspired, and I learnt a lot from my own work. Though there are couple of friends who have always been a constant support for me. And I also follow a lot a well-known photographers and engage myself checking their works too.”
10. Any message for our viewers and readers?
A) “It was a great opportunity for me to get featured in Dailyicons and also getting interviewed by Dailyicons. Being the first nightlife photographer to be featured and being a photographer from our city for the very first time has got immense value and that makes me feel proud of my work.
Just a small message for all you budding photographers out there “Don’t fall…Rise in Life”, and keep clicking!”
His story of his early struggles is not lost on us and it proves how much you have to work hard to make it in life. Buying the camera is just the beginning, the sky is the limit and you have to push yourself every day to get where you want to be. And getting there is no mean feat. We applaud Martin’s dedication and hope, his story inspires many others to take the route less travelled and not give up on his dreams.
We deeply thank Martin, for taking time out to speak with us. Do check out his facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/MartinFotography/ and just check out his awesome work. Also check out his viewbug profile at https://www.viewbug.com/member/martinfotography and stay amazed.
Stay tuned for more such awe inspiring stories.