‘Atul Kasbekar reveals Victoria’s secrets’

For lovers of all things beautiful, Atul Kasbekar’s exhibition of photographs from Victoria is a delight. Kasbekar has captured the touristy and the regular from his own unique perspective. Condé Nast Traveller caught up with Kasbekar at the opening of his exhibition.

Tell us some of the stories behind these pictures from Victoria. There was no brief! I was free to shoot whatever I wanted... Though there is so much to see, not all of these are postcards – some are images of everyday things I found interesting in a way no one else did. [On technique] At Phillip Island, we had a lot of trouble with the weather. So to get the shot, we had to work really hard, and keep in mind that we would have to work a lot on the post production. Similarly, the moss that you see in one of the images was difficult to capture. What you see finally is a combination of several images.

As a photographer, do you find some places more photo-friendly than others? Yes! Without doubt. (Australia) was quite fabulous – beautiful light all around, and lots to see. Gorgeous all around. I think Cape Town is inherently photo-friendly. You can have literally four seasons in a day! The weather’s a havoc, in a nice way, and anything can happen. Santa Barbara (California, US), where I went to photography school, is also beautiful. I also love London, but that’s probably because I have lots of friends there who are very well off (laughs).

What about India? In India, is a beautiful city. Not Mumbai, as much. I have been to around five to six times and I think it’s really beautiful. Goa is special, because I come from there. We once had an ancestral house, which no longer stands, but the bond remains.

Tell us something about Goa that most travellers don’t know. Tourists love for its food, but the genuinely good cuisine happens further south, towards Karwar. That’s where they take their food very seriously. They can tell you what fish from what cove tastes better, and what’s the best time of the month to eat crabs! They put a lot of effort into their cuisine. Goans, in comparison, are laidback about their food. They prefer to keep things simple. If you really want good food, you will have to travel further south from Goa.

What’s your travelling style? Ah! I have been completely spoilt by now. I like to have all details taken care of for me. I want doors to open and things to happen by themselves. I prefer travelling in comfort. I am a tall person, and cannot travel in cramped cabins. For me, luxury is when you don’t have to bother about things like these.

What’s been the most memorable experience so far? We were camping in Corsica (France) with family and friends. It was an amazing place. Every evening, my brother-in-law would spear fish with a spear gun. Now, that requires a lot of skill. You have to hold your breath under water for minutes, wait for the fish to come bywhich is not easythen aim, keeping in mind the velocity, speed of the target and the refraction! Despite all this, he would put three to four fish on the table every evening. Amazing!

“Melbourne Moments” is an exhibition of photographs made by lensman Atul Kasbekar for Tourism Victoria. The photographs will be on display from March 13 to March 17 at the Trident Art Walk at Trident, Nariman Point, Mumbai. (+91 22 2282 1854;

 

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Salil Deshpande

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