Born in Liberia, along the western coastline of Africa. Having been raised in different cities like Kanchipuram, Mumbai, and finally Pune has added a lot of cultural diversity in his upbringing. Ashish’s life has been a melting pot of experiments and crazy adventures.
The entire process of bringing together several seemingly disparate elements into one interwoven piece of pictorial art that stuns the viewer; It is this that gives him ultimate satisfaction.
Not only studying Photography, Ashish has a background in Mass Media, Advertising and Journalism. He has worked with highly respected photographers like Vikram Bawa, Manjari Sharma and Brian Pineda. He also shoots for Automobile magazines because of his sheer love for automobiles and traveling.
Fashion photography came to him after a lot of experiments and sleepless nights of dabbling in many different genres’ of photography. He has also been awarded the Best Photographer by Jabong Online Fashion Week. He absolutely loves shooting surreal concepts and experimenting with lighting.
“I believe in transforming imaginative ideas into reality. The entire idea of the Human eye and the camera sharing the same principles of physics inspires me to perceive things in a different manner. What makes each one of us different is what we do with our thoughts.” -Ashish Gurbani
Why are you a photographer?
Photography to me came by chance. While I was growing up, I had no certainty of where I was headed and I totally stumbled upon it. The only reason I am a photographer is because I was to use it as a medium to communicate my thoughts and ideas and reach out to audience unaware of certain topics.
Do you remember any decisive moment when you felt ‘I want to be a photographer’?
Yes, the day I was gifted the Canon 550D by my parents, I knew I was definitely doing the right thing. It was about 12 years ago.
Were there any particular role models for you when you grew up?
I wasnt too sure about who my rolemodel was. I was thoroughly guided by Manjari Sharma, then New York based Fine art photographer who was working on her project in Mumbai. She was my answer to the question ‘ What does a photographer really do?’
What steps have you taken to train yourself in photography?
Assistating Manjari Sharma on her project Darshan was my gateway to what photography really is. Post graduation in mass media and journalism, I enrolled myself into a 2 year long diploma course in Fashion & people photography. Post my course completion, I assisted one of indias leading Fashion photographers, Vikram Bawa who really trained me well to understand what running a photography business is really about.
Who was the most influential personality on your career in photography?
There have been quite a few influences in my photography career. but training with Vikram was an eye opening experience. So I would say he has influenced me the most.
How has photography changed over the course of the last couple of decades? Is execution/art direction more important than it used to be?
I have only been in this for nearly a decade now. But yes the evolution is fast paced. Today the cameras companies are pushing the bar higher every six months and this is enabling newer and more creative techniques. While I would say lesser technology is better, in photography its important to upgrade your gear and update your information every few years to stay on the top of your game. About art direction, it plays a very very important role. Infact its these tiny details that really can make or break your concept.
What do you think of the current state of Print Advertising photography in India? Is it at par with the work done worldwide?
The current state of print advertising in India is primitive. The work quality in india is definitely at par with the work done worldwide, while we cant push beyond because a higher percentage of our audience is less educated. Slowly but steadily, we will get there.
Where do you get your inspiration?
I love to to personal projects and experiments with my photography. Apart from that, everyday life is what inspires me.
Was there any time when you wanted to quit photography?
Haha! there are always times when everybody wants to quit. But thats the time I tell myself, these hurdles are just experiences to learn from and grow out of. And thats what I do always.
Any current work in Indian Advertising that you find exciting? Especially Print?
Currently I love the way the indian brands are willing to give the photographer a free hand. no particular campaign thats really caught my eye in India at the moment.
Whats your dream project?
My current project is to do a roadtrip across India with a team of models, make up artists, hair stylists and capture all the cultures from across the country while shooting at some of the most remote locations.
Who would you want to spend a dinner with?
Whats on your iPod?
Im going back to the basics. Currently listening to the music I grew up with. Pink Floyd, Metallica, Hinder, 3 Doors Down and Oasis to name a few.
Mac or PC?
Mac all the way.
Whats your Instagram Handle?
MY instagram handle is @AshishGurbani