“I couldn’t understand how photography became my passion from a hobby,” reminisces Samruddha Mogal, an architect in private practice, in Nashik for last 18 years for whom photography has been a hobby since childhood as he learned the basics from his architect father.
Samruddha received his first digital camera in year 2002 and started doing digital photography. While in a study tour to Jaipur –Ajmer in 2003, he discovered that, some of the images shot by him were good compositions and needed to be preserved. He reminisces “That was the first time I got the strong feeling that this is the medium I love and must practice a lot to enjoy it more”.
He recalls, “During architectural education the learning process of photography was intense and I absorbed new techniques from some classmates who were very creative in this field. During those days we used to experiment in photography with manual cameras and film roll”.
Thereafter, for a decade Samruddha did serious digital photography. Experimenting with photography and discovering improvements in his own perceptions is his passion. Through self learning and experimentation in photography, Mogal developed an eye for searching the perfect angle, composition, light and background. “It is like adding a little extra to the otherwise ordinary photo” feels Samruddha. Initially architectural photography was the focus but slowly he diversified with abstract and nature photography.
Besides Photography, Mogal has been involved in architectural education as a visiting faculty in College of Architecture, Nashik for the last 15 years. He has participated in many architectural ‘Study Tours’ within India and abroad.
In 2013, while in Mumbai casually visiting Jehangir Art Gallery with friends, Samruddha saw a photography exhibition in the new photography gallery. He liked the gallery and after seeing the exhibition he dreamt of exhibiting his art in it some day. He recollects “I bought one application form and came back home thinking how will I do it. This incident triggered my photography passion on a different plane. I had never exhibited any of my photography anywhere before this. Finally my wish came true when I had an opportunity to display my solo photography exhibition ‘Light & shadow in Architecture’ at Jehangir in January 2014.”
Samruddha’s exhibition got a very good response and after which he gradually changed his passion into a unique profession of ‘Visual Arts Consultancy’ which he started recently. He proposes “Photo paintings” (photo frames with painting like visual effect) from his own creative photo collection having a theme suitable to the building environment and interior context of the project to enhance the look and feel of a space. He intends to pursue this as it is not only creative but also equally challenging.
Samruddha, through his visual arts consultancy has contributed on walls of various interior spaces of his own clients as well as fellow professional friend’s interesting architectural projects such as bungalows, private houses, institutes & corporate offices etc.
Many of Samruddha’s photo articles based on Architecture & Heritage have been published in National Architectural magazines in India. He has also judged in various amateur photography competitions across Maharashtra.
Samruddha Mogal is a Founder Member of ‘Saturday Forum- Nashik,’ an informal platform for likeminded individuals from various design disciplines to explore the realm of art, architecture and everything in between. Saturday Forum is engaged in books reading, debates & discussions, presentation by experts in the field of art and architecture, conducting workshops and participation in architectural competitions among others.
He is also associated with INTACH (Indian National Trust for Art & cultural Heritage) as a life member and active core group member of INTACH Nashik chapter. He is part of a team for old city Heritage Walks and Publications of INTACH. Intach Nashik chapter has designed a calendar for year 2016 based on selected compositions of Samruddha’s personal Photographic collection. Also, a photographic collage named “Architectural Heritage of Nashik” was highly acclaimed in Annual Festival of INTACH Nashik in December 2016.
Samruddha has recently created a book named “Celestial Gathering- Kumbha Mela Nashik & Trimbakeshwar 2015” which is in its final stages of publication by INTACH. The purpose of this book is to give glimpses of the celebration aspect of this mega event happen after every 12 years. It is a reflection of positive energy felt by him in that festive atmosphere. The book intends to form a visual narrative of the event like an abstract where the reader may have his own way of looking at the event.
Apart from architecture, Samruddha’s keen interests in various fields of visual and performing arts has led to a close association in various local organizations such as Kalakshetra- A visual Arts Appreciation Centre, Cultural Committee member of Shankaracharya Trust, Advisory board member of recently formed Nashik Arts Society etc.
For Samruddha “Photography is a visual music. Sense of composition and play of light are the essence of the photography. As one develops the skill of photography, the ability of looking at the same thing in a different perspective makes photographical journey exciting.”