On the occasion of Teachers Day, professors and students from the IIP Academy for Fine Arts & Research Centre share their views on NEP 2020 and how the new policy creates a suitable environment for furthering creative studies in India, with a special focus on Fine Arts Photography and the study of the history of photography and its applications in current times. In photography, it is always important to know the ‘subject’ at study closely, for which IIP has introduced Ethnographic Portraits and Documentary Photography. They also expressed the importance of going beyond the realm of Commercial Photography to explore the art and magic behind photography.
Giving Wings to Creative Minds!
How does a course like photography benefit from the National Education Policy 2020?
NEP 2020 is a milestone for an institute like ours as it supports creative courses like Fine Arts, including photography, painting, sculpture, etc. I believe that Arts has the ability to make a positive impact on our overall GDP as it can create a parallel economy in our country. For instance, paintings and photographs by artists are often sold in crores. However, to generate such huge money, only an artist of great potential equipped with canvas and colors is required. To nurture such talented minds in the country and abroad, IIP has envisioned many creative courses to further the aspirations of such people. In a recent survey, over 89% of students believed that creativity improves overall decision-making processes. The current regime understands these facts and that is why NEP 2020 supports creativity in a big way. The government has said that it will contribute 6% of the country’s GDP to education.
What can students expect at IIP?
At IIP, we know how to transition a student into a brand. Our curriculum has been thoughtfully designed as per the emerging trends followed in the Western countries. At IIP, the focus is on quality teaching as we only have a batch of 16 students. I believe if we can raise the quality of Fine Arts education in India then surely one day, we can save our forex and it will also lessen the craze of students to travel abroad to study Fine Arts.
We’re also offering online photography courses so that students can learn this art form from the comfort of their home and at their own pace. At IIP, students can expect a phenomenal change in the way they perceive creativity under our expert guidance and care. Our students get to collaborate with high-profile clients like ministries, various government initiatives, brands and corporate houses, political parties, NGOs, advertising and the fashion world.
Rajesh Goyal, Founder & Director, IIP
What is the vision of IIP?
By 2024, our vision is to make IIP Academy as IIP University of Fine Arts and Research Centre. We want to work on ‘Indology’ – arts, culture, philosophy and history. We believe photography based on this concept can do wonders. This will also highlight our country and its rich cultural heritage through the lens of our photographers. In India, every state has its own culture, language and tradition, food and attire. Our country is bestowed with heritage monuments dating back to ages adorning a colorful past. All these beautiful facts about our country make it a ‘museum’ in itself. In today’s digital age, all our culture is dying down slowly and steadily and we, at IIP, are trying our best to revive our culture by creating a photographic history of India. Moreover, once we realize our vision of establishing the university, it will be the first of its kind in India providing students with exploring a diverse range of creative opportunities in painting, sculpture, photography, music, dance, cultural and fine arts history.
IIP is a League Apart from Other Institutes!
Please tell us about your new courses at IIP?
Dr.Vikas Gupta, Associate, Associate Professor, Dept. of Art & Photography, IIP Academy for Fine Arts and Research Centre, Noida
We have BFA and MFA level course programs in Photography at IIP. These programs are with the specialization of Fine Arts Photography, including Documentary Photography and Conceptual Photography. IIP is unique in this matter as there’s no other institute that provides such courses in photography. At IIP, the focus is on Fine Arts Photography, taking the artistic and theoretical sides of photography into consideration. We want our students to be
Why should budding photographers join IIP?
At IIP, students get an ambiance for professional-level, studio practice of photography. Our studios are well-equipped with avant-garde technologies to make photography learning an enriching experience. We also have model shoots, studio-based Portraiture Photography, Food Photography, Product Photography, etc. We provide all kinds of training to make a novice turn into an expert photographer. Our course is designed in such a manner that theoretical learning is an integral part of our curriculum, including the history of photography, technicality behind photography and philosophy of photography. We teach the application of such theoretical concepts, besides studio-based practical learning. Theoretical learning of photography is highly neglected in India and this is where we are unique compared with others.
Fine Arts Photography is in Demand Nowadays!
Will NEP 2020 provide a boost for a course like Photography?
Manish Sehrawat, Associate Lecturer, IIP Academy for Fine Arts and Research Centre, Noida
NEP 2020 provides students the option of pursuing inter-disciplinary education. Earlier one had to complete a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) and get a degree before pursuing MFA; however, with NEP 2020, both BFA and MFA can be merged together to provide comprehensive subject knowledge. Second, NEP 2020 provides more scope for research-oriented courses. Third, there’s a provision for multi-disciplinary courses, meaning if a student is
What are the two new subjects that IIP has introduced?
IIP has included two research-oriented subjects – Ethnographic Portraits and Fashion Documentary. Ethnography is the study of people and their culture. We have borrowed this concept of photography from the famous American photographer, Edward Sheriff Curtis. He was the one who merged ethnography with portraits. These subjects are taught to BFA and MFA students in the second year and third year, respectively. We provide students with opportunities for Ethnography research, wherein they need to visit a part of India and live some time with the ‘subject’ in the study and then prepare ethnographic portraits through photographs. In Fashion Documentary, the idea is to merge fashion with documentary and delve into the hardships faced by fashion models and designers through these photographs. We also teach them how to do Quality Research in Photography.
IIP is my second home and amazed me by the standards they are following to establish Fine Arts and Photography learning in India.
Prof. Dr. MajaJerrentrup, Germany A Nikon Ambassador and Adobe partner, I was fascinated by the rich Indian cultural heritage and studied Indian aesthetics. For me, the IIP Academy is a dynamic, culturally vibrant and at the same time very professional institution, that offers a wide range of seminars, lectures and workshops on photography. I have given numerous seminars on documentary and staged photography and went on excursions with her IIP students
Ashok Dilwali, Vetran Photographer
Send my wholehearted good wishes to Rajesh Goyal Ji of IIP Academy for the wonderful work he is doing for the advancement of photography by training so many young people who can make a livelihood from photography as a career. This is the true sense is a contribution to which these young people will be obliged to him and this institution in years to come. May this valuable work grow and would certainly be a part of our beloved Modi ji’s dream of enhancing the “Skill India” project.
Photography is Visual Communication!
What’s your perspective on IIP as an institution for photography in India?
Jatin Jain, Commercial Photographer, Studio LodineVapor
I always found photography enticing right since my childhood days. After completing my engineering and having worked for 2-3 corporate companies, I decided to pursue my passion and hence chose IIP Academy for learning the art and skill behind photography. One of the first lessons that I learned during the enlightening conservation I had with Mr. Rajesh Goyal, Chairman IIP was that it is important to learn photography first and then decide my genre rather than doing vice versa. At IIP, I realized that there’s more to photography than just its technical aspects like light and optical science.
Photography is an art form of visual communication. For most of us, photographs are a medium to revisit our memories. However, photography as an art form acts as a medium to spread awareness or message regarding a social issue, etc.
What photography genre are you pursuing currently?
Initially, I wanted to become a Wildlife Photographer, however, at the end of my course at IIP, I chose to become a Commercial Photographer. In commercial photography, I do photoshoots related to products, magazine editorials, foods, architecture and interiors shoot for hotels and restaurants. Commercial photography is an integral part of graphic designing, as these photographs are useful in designing brochures, catalogs, etc.
How was your overall experience at IIP?
IIP has provided me with a complete learning experience which has enabled me to conduct photography classes for students at IIP efficiently and at my part-time classes as well. I have taught 12-to-62-year-old students in my classes and everyone is as awestruck as I was during my learning days at IIP. Most people discover the art side of photography for the first time in these classes and that makes the experience of learning photography truly enriching.
The Ideation of an Image is Quintessential!
How did IIP help you in shaping up your career?
Swikriti Gupta, Senior Visual Executive at John Jacobs, Lenskart
Before IIP, I didn’t know how to study an image. Teachers at IIP have a very meticulous approach towards the course and everything is taught in great detail. Every student has the facility to take separate sessions with teachers to learn or clear the doubts related to the nuances of photography. The best part is that the institute conducts hands-on practical classes so that students can grasp the subject from the core. For instance, as a student, I used to have model shoots at the institute itself so that it becomes a part of my photography persona and doesn’t appear like a new thing when I’m doing it professionally.
These campus shoots helped me focus and identify things that need to be taken care of while I’m on a live shoot. This practical aspect of campus shoots builds the confidence of novice photographers to a great extent.
Please share your experiences at IIP?
During my journalism days, I developed an interest in photography and, consequently, joined IIP, where I’d a candid conversation regarding photography as a subject with Mr.Rajesh Goyal. Through that interaction, I came to know that it is very essential to know your intention behind capturing a particular image. Only then you can capture all its essence perfectly. This concept piqued my interest in photography even more. First, IIP helped me in gaining confidence while shooting and, secondly, it helped me improvise my vision regarding photography. Through IIP, I learned how to picturise an image and visualize its related aspects.
What are you currently doing?
Currently, I’m working for Lenskart as their official photographer, videographer and do campaign and model shoots for the company’s premium brand of eyewear – John Jacobs. Whatever is put on social media, Ad campaigns, and other platforms are planned and shot by me.
IIP is a Dream Institution to Learn Photography!
What was your recent exhibition all about and how was the response?
GauravDubariya, Photo Editor &Retoucher, Bizbox Publishing Delhi
My recent exhibition was based on my past experiences and incidents related to my life. These incidents and experiences were the theme of my exhibition, titled “THE BALLADS OF DARKNESS”. In my sleep, I used to dream about several things and experienced a very unique connection with them. I decided to picturise my dreams through photographs and shared the idea with my mentors in showcasing these photographs in an exhibition. My mentors at IIP were very supportive and extended all the help needed with directing the exhibition. While doing this project, I read “Interpretation of Dreams” by Sigmund Freud, to expound on my dreams. I along with my mentors researched this project for the next 1-1.5 years. So, the whole exhibition was in fact a compilation of all my different dreams and my feelings related to
them. Since this was a one-of-a-kind project, it generated a very good response from the audience. It was, in many ways, a novel experience for Fine Arts Photographers at IIP.
What is the role of IIP and its mentors in your professional journey?
I pursued the 3-year BFA course in Photography from IIP. In my final year, there were many infrastructural changes at IIP, such as the setting up of a library, art gallery, studio set-ups, etc. In fact, I would like to mention that IIP is currently a full-fledged Fine Arts College in Delhi-NCR. During my final year, my mentor, VikasYash Gupta, not only directed my project but also gave me fruitful advice regarding career opportunities in Photography. Every day at IIP, we used to learn new concepts about photography which made for a wholesome experience as students. Each mentor has his/her own perspective about photography and that is why learning Photography at IIP is such a distinctive experience. No doubt, whatever I’m today, I owe it to my mentors at IIP.
What are you currently doing professionally? What are your thoughts about the upcoming film city on Yamuna Expressway?
I’m currently working as a Photo Editor &Retoucher for George Street Photo & Video. I also work as a Freelancer for my YouTube channel. I also do Fashion and Product Photography. At IIP, many of my colleagues are very eager to pursue Celebrity Photography, so the upcoming film city will definitely provide very good exposure, along with providing great prospects, in terms of work opportunities, career growth, and scope to budding photographers and filmmakers in the Delhi-NCR region.
IIP Helps You Evolve as a Professional!
How did IIP nurture you as a professional?
Athira Joy, Freelancer, www.shootmyday.in
Since I have always been passionate about photography, I was looking for an institute wherein I can nurture my passion in a wholesome manner. Being from a humble background, the exposure at IIP provided me with the right kind of skillsets and training to begin my lifelong adventure in the field of Photography. My mentors and friends at IIP helped me to explore my passion in numerous ways. It was at IIP that I learned the art behind Photography in its true sense. I moved to Delhi from Kerala to pursue my passion and, with the help of Rajesh Goyal sir and other mentors, I gathered a lot of knowledge and training that elevated my learning process.
Please tell us about your recent work that has created a buzz in Kerala.
I recently did a Nude Maternity Shoot for a French couple who are also my friends. I discussed the idea behind the shoot and they had no qualms about doing it and, in fact, were quite upbeat about it. Since we share the same outlook towards life and art, the couple enthusiastically shared their own ideas about the shoot and how it should be executed. Since Kerala is a liberal state, we didn’t face any problem while shooting the couple for this particular photo shoot. However, once the shoot pictures of the French couple got released on social media, the pictures went viral. While a few people found the shoot objectionable, many others heaped praises and words of encouragement on me. Some even came to my home to congratulate and appreciate my work personally. I really felt very proud to complete my dream project and would want to replicate this in the future, if more people are open to the idea. With my unique concept in Maternal Photography, I was awarded as the
Best Lady Photographer in Kerala by a leading company.
How is the mentorship at IIP?
No matter what course you pursue at IIP, be it photography, filmmaking or any other course, you will always find yourself at the next level by the end of the course. At IIP, you can truly evolve as a professional photographer or a filmmaker. During my time at IIP, I came across excellent mentors such as Shahjahan sir, Namisha madam, and Bhagyashree madam who were very well-versed with their art and craft and had studied abroad. They are associated with this industry for a long time and hence, provided us with immense knowledge regarding the subtleties of Photography. Those interactions with mentors were really influential and helped me grow and develop as a professional photographer. “Athira was shy, spoke less and didn’t know Hindi and English much, but it is said art needs no boundaries, no language. She overcame all the hurdles and today we are proud to see her shine like a celebrity in her state and beyond.”