Udayavni Special

Don’t know where life takes me but will use my lens to connect with people: Priyanka Gandhi’s son Raihan


PTI, Jul 12, 2021, 7:41 PM IST

New Delhi: His life path is still uncharted and he doesn’t know quite where it will take him but Raihan Vadra, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s son, is certain photography will be pivotal in whatever he does in the future. The 20-year-old, born to politics some would say as a scion of the Nehru-Gandhi family, says he would like to use his lens to connect with people and forward his own understanding of life.

”I would never say yes or no to anything. But photography is going to be definitely one of the things that I would like to do for a long time,” said the young Vadra, the son of Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and Robert Vadra.

He has begun charting the course of what was a hobby and is now a full-time passion and maybe profession with his debut exhibition of photographs titled “Dark Perception – an exposition of space, light and time”. On exhibit are over 40 photographs — from wildlife to old architecture and buildings to abstract.

”I do not know where life will take me in the future. What I know is that I want to concentrate fully on photography right now,” Raihan told PTI on the sidelines of the exhibition.

Born in Delhi and educated in Delhi, Dehradun and London, Raihan said he would like to focus on people through his photography. To a question on whether he was trained in photography, the young man said he does not have any formal grounding in the art except for some tips from his mother when he was a child and a two-week course in New York ”I started out with photography as a 10-year-old. The jungle has always fascinated me and my initial frames depicted the forest and the wildlife,” he said.

”Later, as I moved to London for my education and found it difficult to visit the forest, the nature of my pictures also changed and I ventured into a myriad range, including street photography, event photography and photography of life itself.

”My mom gave me some tips when I was a kid. I did a two-week course at the International Centre of Photography in New York, but I have been basically self trained. I may be looking at a Masters in photography,” he said.

Commenting on the title of his exhibition, Raihan said darkness offers a full perspective on issues.

”In the dark there is no judgement and you are free to evolve your thoughts… darkness is freedom and perception is the prison.” ”I am just trying to mirror the world as I see in my photographs,.. I inhabit a world in which light, space and time constantly realign themselves and give way to imagination and freedom,” he said.

Raihan has already started as a professional, curating an Instagram page as well as accepting commercial photography assignments on interior design, food, brands and products and architecture.

He said his biggest inspiration when it comes to photography is showing life and his subjects from multiple perspectives.

”One of the things I would like to add to my work is people. The next time I display my work, you would see more work on people. Portraits and crowds are some of the stuff that I would be working on,” he said.

Raihan, who uses different cameras, including his iPhone, spends about four hours a day on his passion.

”Proud of my boy for finding his own path and working hard towards his goals,” Priyanka Gandhi said on Twitter. The exhibition, “Dark Perception – an exposition of space, light and time”, started on Sunday and is on till July 17 at New Delhi’s Bikaner House.

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