Kumartuli, perhaps one of the most incredible places to visit in Kolkata. Situated beside the majestic Ganges near Shovabajar area, it is one of the largest idol manufacturers in Asia. It is the birthplace of the God and Goddess, a place where God lives among people.
I remember my first photo-walk with Anirban da in Kolkata when we visited Kumartuli in 2010. It was not much crowded then with photographers and photo-enthusiasts like now. I had my small point&shoot camera then (Canon Powershot SX120 IS). I had no idea what is called aperture, how shutter speed controls the image, what is the use of ISO. I remembered Anirban da explained me little bit about aperture and shutter speed then. I always found Manual Mode interesting as I could fiddle with the settings of the camera. I started taking photographs only just to find out that I was shooting all the time in broad daylight keeping my ISO at 1600. Most of the images were grainy. I was disappointed and puzzled. I started reading about photography, spending time in the internet to see legendary photographer’s work. I came to know about composition, framing, story and different techniques.
Kumartuli holds a special place in my heart. Why so? Because I find the place to be one of the most challenging place to shoot. Not because of its narrow lanes, but it is one of the most photographed places. Every inch of this place has been framed by the photographers. To find a unique frame is a challenge here. This drives me every year to visit the place and to find new unique frame.
In Kumartuli you will see people of different ages are working, from little children to old person. They are doing it from one generation to another generation. These idols are exported in many places, different countries. These people are all master craftsmen. Living in the narrow lanes of Kumartuli they bring life to the idols. If you have never visited here, you should probably pay a visit here to witness how Gods are born in human hand.
Here are some photographs I clicked from my recent visits there.
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All photographs are copyrighted to Koustav Ghosh.