• Anubhav Gaur

5 Amazing Indian Wildlife Photographers You Need to Follow on Instagram

Updated: Jun 29

Wildlife photography is one of the most action-packed genres in the world. Behind every wildlife image, there are months of travel, days of preparation, and hours of patience to seize the wonders of the wild within a split second. As fascinating as this may sound, there are a lot of technicalities and hard work behind it. To become a successful wildlife photographer, having good photography skills is just not sufficient. One equally needs to be a nature enthusiast to connect with it and capture its beauty.


One of the most unique factors about the wild is its uncertainty. It's unlike any other form of photography where you have control over what you capture, in the wild- you don't choose the moment, the wild does the job for you.


In this article, we will be exploring all that goes behind wildlife photography through the experiences of five amazing wildlife photographers.


1. Rathika Ramasamy

Instagram: rathikaramasamy

Rathika Ramasamy
Rathika Ramasamy

Rathika Ramasamy is one of India’s most celebrated wildlife photographers. After working as a computer engineer for several years, Rathika eventually became a full time photographer and her love for wildlife has taken her to forests across the world.


Starting her wildlife photography journey in 2003, over the past couple of decades she has worked in areas of wildlife awareness & conservation and has received many accolades for her work.

Rathika is among the founding members of the Photography Arts Association of India. In 2014, she self-published her first book, The Best of Wildlife Moments.


On Instagram, you would find her pictures so natural, she seems like a permanent inhabitant of the jungle who is clicking pictures of her friends- who happen to be birds and animals.


It is worth mentioning that Rathika has an unending love for birds. She tells Skyshot that being a bird photographer comes with its own challenges. Shooting birds involves a lot of walking, on an average of 10 kms a day- that with a heavy and delicate camera equipment. Plus, it is important to be extra cautious while shooting birds as you could find a lot of poisonous snakes and insects on your way. Rathika laughingly tells us that there have been multiple times when she has narrowly escaped stepping on dangerous snakes.

Indian Darter, Rathika Ramasamy
2 Indian Darters fighting in the water, Rathika Ramasamy

Having done safaris across the world, Rathika’s favourite location to shoot is Bharatpur bird sanctuary. Jim Corbett National Park has been her second love.

Safety of the animals is important, not your photograph.

Advice for beginners: Rathika believes that to click good pictures in the wild, it is more important to have a good subject knowledge than a good camera. And subject knowledge comes with immense love for wildlife animals. She loves to read a lot about her subjects.

Today- while her legs are filled with leech bites, her Instagram is filled with some amazing pictures of birds


2. Shivang Mehta

Instagram: shivang.mehta

An international award-winning wildlife photographer and the best-selling author of ‘A Decade with Tigers' and 'Chasing Horizons: Learnings from Africa', Shivang Mehta has donned many hats in his long career, including that of a journalist and a PR professional.

Shivang Mehta
Shivang Mehta

Shivang’s interest in wildlife started at a very young age. As a child, he loved reading books by Jim Corbett. One of his childhood dream was to see a mountain lion and an anaconda in the wild someday.


Having travelled all over the world, Shivang feels that India is the mecca of wildlife.

From Himalayas in the north to Western Ghats in the south- with so many diverse terrains & forests- the biodiversity of India is unmatched.

Though Shivang has a special love for Jim Corbett National park, he feels that every forest has something unique to it.


A thing unique to Shivang’s style of photography is his adoption of technology and newer ways of capturing interesting pictures during his expeditions. Something that he has been doing extensively over the past few years is motion trapping. He sets up small cameras in the wild- especially for catching action at night. Since- most wild animals are nocturnal beings, Shivang feels that capturing action at night can be very rewarding.

Clouded Leopard
Clouded leopard, Malaysian Rainforest, Shivang Mehta

With expensive camera equipment and hight cost of safari, wildlife photography can be an expensive hobby to pursue, Shivang has an interesting perspective to offer to budding wildlife photography enthusiasts.


Shivang tells Skyshot that its always a good idea to start small. Visit small forests, green covers in and around the place you live. It is not essential to go to a national park to capture wildlife, we are all blessed to be in a country like India where there is a lot of forest cover around all major cities. At the end of the day, its all about putting in hours and hours of practice, developing skills and building diverse perspectives.

Later, you can always go to a tiger reserve and take your hobby to the next level.

India is a country that has tons of stories waiting to be captured.


Shivang’s advice on what makes a wildlife photographer successful:

“Evolution! You need to evolve. Think “How do I make my pictures stand out?“

Never be satisfied and always be curious in the wild. Using technology can also get you more creative with your craft”.

Don’t just take good pictures that might get you some good number of likes on social media, but tell compelling stories though your photographs.

Shivang adds that the world is changing fast and pursuing wildlife photography as a full time career is more viable than before.

Video content creation in India has come up in a big way in recent times and the power of using video and films to tell wildlife stories is going to be the future.

With superior video capabilities being introduced in regular photography cameras- there is a lot for enthusiasts to explore. After all- videos are also a powerful medium of education.


Since 2007- Shivang has been running Nature Wanderers- one of India’s first organisations that helps new bee photographers get into wildlife photography. He has conducted over 1000 wildlife photography tours and safaris in some of the toughest terrains on the planet and has mentored over a thousand amateur photographers. Shivang is also the brand ambassador for Canon and is a Columbia Sportswear athlete.


3. Jayanth Sharma

Instagram: @Jayanth_sharma

Jayanth Sharma
Jayanth Sharma

Jayanth Sharma comes from a family of artists. He grew up with a lot of art influence around him during his childhood. His father was a photography teacher- a thing that gave him a lot of exposure into nature and photography.


Jayanth started his career in corporate, and it was in 2008 when he decided to pursue wildlife photography as a full time career.

For Jayanth, photography is a medium of expression. His pictures on Instagram seem less like documented wildlife pictures and more like pieces of art.


Jayanth is very passionate about polar regions- Arctic and Antarctic. He make sure to visit both the regions every year. While an expedition to Arctic can last up to two weeks, an Antarctic expedition usually lasts three weeks.


Talking about the wildlife photography as an industry, Jayanth says that 99% of people don’t make any money out of wild life photography. He jokingly compares it to golf where only if you win championships- you make money.

Stop making photos, start telling stories.

He adds that there are so many wildlife photography enthusiasts right now that the supply for wildlife pictures is huge and on the other hand the demand has not been much. So if someone wants to build a career in this industry- it is important to keep reinventing oneself and get creative with your craft.

Polar Bear, Svalbard, Arctic, Jayanth Sharma
Polar Bear, Svalbard, Arctic, Jayanth Sharma

Jayanth stresses upon the importance of understanding not just the science of the camera but also spend time learning the speciality of your subject, develop skill of tracking (as your subject keeps moving). Also- developing a knack of finding your subject in the wild can be very rewarding.


Jayanth is a Sony brand ambassador and likes to travel the world capturing some interesting stories in the wild. His love for Arctic is unending.

Jayanth is the CEO and Co-founder of Toehold- India’s numero uno travel and photography company, offering high-quality photography-oriented travel and other services.


4. Lionel Falcao

Instagram: @lionelfal

Lionel Falcao
Lionel Falcao

Based in Mumbai, Lionel is an HR professional who pursues wildlife photography as his passion. For Lionel, photography is not merely about going on a safari and capturing pictures but, it's equivalent to a tool that can be used to share knowledge about wildlife with other people and experience nature. He found his calling towards wildlife photography in 2010 on a family trip to Pench National Park. After which, he visited Tadoba National Park in the year 2014. He does in an average 4-5 visit every year and during every trip does a minimum of 6 safaris per trip. During the 2014 trip, he encountered the queen of Tadoba, Maya- the first tiger he ever spotted in the wild, and ever since then, he has been tracking her. He visits Tadoba almost every year now.


Lionel tells Skyshot that he and Maya have developed a deep connection with each other and, no trip to Tadoba goes by wherein he comes back without sighting her. For the same reason he is famously known to have tiger luck amongst his fellow photographers and wildlife enthusiast friends.


Having visited most of the national parks in India, He feels that every wildlife park has its unique beauty and charm- offering different habitats, topography, photography landscapes and should be appreciated for the same.

Wildlife Photography is a way of capturing memories and making history out of it for our future generations to learn and appreciate.

Some interesting things that Lionel has learned with his expeditions over the years is that tigers have a very good memory. Also, every tiger has unique stripes which are used to identify them. The colour tone of the tigers also vary across various national parks. Out of the several parks Lionel has visited his favourite 3 parks are Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve, Nagarhole Tiger Reserve and Panna National Park. The only park for him yet to see a tiger is at Sundarbans National Park. He says that tigers are like magnets, once you see the majestic animal in the wild, you will keep wanting to go back for more.

Maya- Queen of Tadoba, Tiger, Lionel Falcao
Maya- Queen of Tadoba, Lionel Falcao

If there is one thing that Lionel feels wildlife photography has taught him is patience. Nothing in the jungle happens according to your wish and those long hours of waiting patiently for your subject to give you an interesting story can be very rewarding.

When you check out Lionel’s Instagram- you will feel a sense of tenderness in his pictures.

Lionel is a Canon CPS member and has been featured on BBC Earth, Canon India and many other social media platforms.


5. Apoorva Jadon

Instagram: @apoorva_photography

Apoorva Jadon
Apoorva Jadon

Apoorva is a young Pune based software engineer who has been capturing some breathtaking pictures in the wild over the past few years.


While growing up, Apoorva lived in a government bungalow with a lot of greenery around her, and this is when she developed passion for nature & wildlife.


Like most wildlife photographers, Apoorva too feels that patience is extremely important in wildlife photography. Wildlife is unpredictable and spontaneous; anything can happen anytime.

It might happen that you wait for the whole day for something, you might not be able to capture at all, but that’s wildlife, it’s not in your control, it’s Wild!


Apoorva tells Skyshot that you got to stay alert and be patient all the time. She also shares that while being in jungle, all your senses are heightened. You hear better, you see better.

Green Vine Snake, Amboli, Apoorva Jadon
Green Vine Snake, Amboli, Apoorva Jadon

Apoorva has been to many beautiful locations across India, but one of her most favourites is the Kuno National Park- a beautiful and diverse habitat in Madhya Pradesh.

For Apoorva, Wildlife is the music to her chaos. She wishes that people divert their attention from the noise of civilisation to this musical symphony. Something that can be felt from her pictures on Instagram.

Save Earth, Save yourself!

"She requests the audience to play their role in the Nature conservation and protection of the wildlife. Without them, humanity will cease to exist.


If you enjoyed this article and want to see more cool content like this, you will be happy to learn that we are also on Instagram and YouTube! So don’t forget to check those out, and share this article with your folks!

 

Written by Anubhav Gaur, Founder at Skyshot Arts and Entertainment, who while interviewing these amazing wildlife photographers, felt like he was on multiple wildlife safaris himself.



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