Chaitanya Arist Statement

Artist Statement

For me, photography is a means of exploring my curiosity. It is a way of discovering, isolating and simplifying what I find visually fascinating and emotionally moving about our marvelously complex and constantly changing world.
Only then I can bring it to your notice and hope that you will be able to share my experience. And sharing this sense of discovery is as important to me as the discovery itself.

This is one of the reasons I left a well-established career as a mathematician to pursue photography – I enjoyed the same kind of joy from making mathematical discoveries, but I found it insufficient that I could share that excitement with only a very select group of people, namely other mathematicians.

I find photography a much better outlet for my creative instincts.

I have been photographing for the last 20 years, ever since my dad bought me a secondhand SLR camera and some film. Over time my interests have evolved. From being fascinated with nature and wildlife, to the graphic qualities of a scene, to the quality of light and its play with texture and tonality, to the human face and body and now to the inner world of human emotion and its manifestation in bodily form, gestures and facial mien.

My equipment, techniques and workflow have evolved with my interests. I see two steps to the photographic process. First is my private affair of discovery, understanding and refinement of that understanding to distill the essence. The second step is capturing and presenting this discovery to you, the viewer, in a way that emphasizes that essence, discarding the nonessential and removing all distractions. In simple terms, it’s “seeing” and “showing”.

Ansel Adams said that there is nothing worse than a “sharp image of a fuzzy concept” – The final outcome is weak if the “seeing” is not strong enough, in spite of technical eminence. But I also strongly believe that enough thought and effort needs to go into the showing part if the full impact of the “seeing” is to reach you. Photographs of great visual content and potential for expressive depth lose half their power if captured and presented with bad technical choices. I strive to meet the highest standards of conceptual clarity and technical excellence in my work.