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By Diti Shah, IndiaFM
Tuesday, January 09, 2007
The most awaited calendar of the year is out! Celebrity photographer Dabboo Ratnani talks exclusively to us about the making of his calendar, and shares his journey of shooting with the biggest names in Bollywood.
Want to know how he created magic with water?
Hear it from the man himself.
This pictured can be titled "Kajol" because only she can do something so crazy with so much ease. Her expression was perfect when she hurled coffee into the water. We had to do this shot about 25-30 times but finally it turned out to be pretty nice. She had to kick her legs in water and chuck the coffee and give the perfect expression, all at the same time. So it was quite a complex process. We had to take care that the water or coffee does not fall on her face or on to the camera. But finally Kajol pulled it off, and we captured the shot when the coffee actually circled her face. The coffee droplets, which were in fast motion, were also captured perfectly. It was a lot of fun working with Kajol.
Hrithik's picture was done at hotel J W Marriot. I was shooting in Bangkok about 3 years ago and we had spoken about this picture then. We had decided the theme at that time, and we conceptualized him reading a book- sitting on a chair and concentrating on the book even when the chair is tipping over water. Finally we got a chance to implement it, as "water" was my theme for the 2007 calendar. So we met a day before the shoot to figure how it's going to be. We tried many shots with the chair. Finally the d-day arrived. Hrithik had got along seven spare outfits so that he can wear a dry one after each shot till we get it right. We tried to do a shot without the chair, and luckily we got through in the very first shot. So we decided to go with it.
The most important thing in this image was Hrithik's expression because he is reading the newspaper so intently while he is tipping. From the minute he started falling to the fraction of the second when he hit the water he still held that expression, which is amazing. There is a lot of hard work he had put in, he gave us one full day for the shooting but of course we did not need it. But the sincerity that he has put in comes through, especially for a non-commercial calendar that has been done just for the sake of art. Hrithik is one of the best male models we have in the industry and gives the best pictures, but his dedication is like that of a newcomer. He doesn't ever want to compromise; he looks into detailing, and makes you feel special with the time and enthusiasm he gives. It was a delight to work with him.
We shot Mr. Bachchan's photo with my dog Flash who is quite a model himself. Mr. Bachchan grew quite fond of dogs ever since Abhishek was gifted a pup for his birthday. Since then Mr. Bachchan has grown quite easy with dogs and also holds an emotional attachment towards them. Whenever he comes to my studio he always plays with Flash and fools around with him. So this time I felt Mr. Bachchan must shoot with Flash. I have tried to get Flash in my calendar every year since the last six years, so this time when a concept struck me I decided to go ahead with it, especially because Mr. Bachchan loved it too. We did this shot at J W Marriot again by the poolside. We kept the frame ready and Mr. Bachchan came ready with his make-up and outfit from home. We completed the shot in ten minutes flat and then he left from there. So he is very fast to work with and totally focused. The picture is very emotional as it shows a dog that can not bend his neck down to have some water from the pool. Seeing the strong sunlight, Mr. Bachchan has collected some water in his hand and given it to the dog. So we have followed a very emotional mood in the picture.