FO2 Stage | 049 | Pramit Chanda

Travel and mountains have been very important parts of my life. Even when I was on a different career path, that feeling of being around a scenic place never left me, and found a middle ground where I could do both of them.

I am a National level chess player but had to give up professional chess as I failed my 11th standard and my family wanted me to study more as I have been a bright student who got 10 CGPA. So, I decided to give more time to my studies leaving everything else behind.

I used to click my pictures through the phone, my best friend and I used to experiment a lot on the phone. We used to publish our pictures on websites which paid some amount for such photographs. When I went to college and got some freedom, as I was living in a hostel, I saved all my money and decided to go on a solo trip to Ladakh. When my father saw that I was so passionate about photography, he gifted me a DSLR on my birthday. Having a DSLR and knowing photography are two different things. I have seen people who have good cameras but don’t know about the technicalities of photography.

When I got my camera, I didn’t know much about photography. I was just experimenting with my gear but to my surprise, one of my pictures from that trip got published in a magazine. It boosted me up so much and made me experiment with photography even more. Since then, I always look for budget trips and whenever I go for my internships, I always choose my internships to scenic places like Himachal, Uttarakhand, and as many scenic places as I could. That way I followed my studies as well as my photography. Although my priority in those places was always photography and my travel was free of cost as I went there for research purposes.

Since I have always been to scenic places, I have only clicked travel pictures but when I went to Bhopal it has changed my approach towards my photography. I started exploring the streets and covered most of the parts of that city and started vlogging.

When I got featured in the Quint for my pictures of Kumbh, that was the biggest boost I had. By that time, I finished my PG and I had already dedicated all those years to my education and now it was time for me to take a path and I decided to travel.

When I came to Delhi in 2019 for my internship, I used to work on weekdays and explored the city during the weekends. Street photography is so good to practice in Delhi, there were stories everywhere. One night, it was immensely raining and I had an umbrella and my camera in my hand and I clicked a picture of India Gate and whoever saw that picture, was amazed by the colors and reflections it had.

When I got selected for my Ph.D., I was only getting the stipend of 30k, which is way less than what I get from my photography. That time, I started doing photography full-time.

Since traveling is something I cannot give up, I am now working as a chief content editor at a travel company which allows me to travel and earn at the same time and that’s what I was looking for my entire life. Even though I didn’t like biotechnology as much, being a part of that field has definitely helped me travel and directed me towards my life as a photographer and I finally found my calling.

- Pramit Chanda

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Interviewer: Aman

Written by: Harshita Sharma

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