So we invited our Indian brother Niteesh jangid for our #pakistanjournaltalk session, where we invite people of vision to share some part of their life journey with us. Niteesh is a 90s kid who wants to live in 60s. Introvert, Someone who survives on art, poetry, and films. Huge cinephile. Coffee addict. Strong Opinions and point of views and a gentleman of course.
Can you tell us the true basis of your inspiration?
I find inspiration in the most trivial things of our lives, It doesn’t have to sound big, or need to be dramatic enough. It just needs to resonate with me, an old couple walking in the park, kids on a swing, coffee mug in the balcony or just the sound of food being cooked in the kitchen. It’s the trivial things of human life that inspires my poetry and pictures.
What do you want your viewers to take away from your work?
A smile, a lesson or a long-lasting impression on their mind, forcing them to think, to ponder over the small things that we miss out on or goes unnoticed and ignored. That’s what art should do, it should make you think.
Exactly what it is you want to say with your photographs, and how do you actually get your photographs to do that?
What I want to say is always a different thing with the different picture, but it’s all connected to one thread, human life, and its details. To say it all, I guess, one needs to be able to feel or see all that and single them out from a vast canvas of the world to put it in a frame.
What is something that you are passionate about?
Films, Photography and Poetry.
What do you want more people to be discussing nowadays?
It would be really helpful if people discussed more of what really matters, issues regarding Women, about the REAL development, about religious freedom, about global warming, about being tolerant of different views and opinions and learn how to co-exist peacefully rather than getting played by politicians and their propaganda.
What continually drives you to photograph in the streets?
The large part of my portfolio is Street Photography. The best thing or the thing that attracts me towards it is that you really get to know other people, their lives, and sheer rawness of it. You have an entire huge stage filled with unlimited opportunities to make a great picture, that’s the beauty of it. All you need is a camera and that could even be your phone.
What artists do you admire & take inspiration from?
Well, in photography it’s Joel Meyerowitz, Saul Leiter, Steve Mccurry. In filmmaking, I like the work of PT Anderson, Terrance Mallick, Ingmar Bergman, Majid Majidi. In Poetry, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Rahat Indori, Dushyant Kumar, Nirala to name a few.
How do you come up with new ideas? Do you have a process?
There is no rigid process that I follow. It all just comes naturally, sometimes a poem germs the idea of a story, sometimes a picture or films germs the idea of a poem, sometimes it’s just something that’s happening around you or within you.
Where is your favorite place in the world?
Prague and My room.
If you know everyone in Pakistan is reading this, is there any advice you can share?
It’s the same advice that I would give to Indians as well, do not let political agendas and propaganda fool you and make you hate others. Be open, be accepting, be tolerant. Because there is no greater religion than humanity.
Walk me through your portfolio. Which pieces are you most proud of, and why?
Well, I am a cinematographer/ Photographer and I also try to write. I am currently more active in Nonfiction Genre. I have been shooting digital films for Brands like Mercedes, Ducati, Santoor, HUL, Renault, are the few names. I have been working on a documentary which is on the subject of Human Migration. Another Documentary is under post production. When I get time from all that, I travel and shoot for my own Travel Series called ‘I walk the Earth’. I have traveled a lot in India, Europe and Bhutan for that. I have also been working on my Poetry Collection, which I hope to get Published someday. And then there is Photography. Well, that’s one thing that never goes out of the picture, if I am on a set, traveling, or just going out for a walk, I am always clicking.
Is there anyone from Pakistan who has inspired you personally?
Yeah, a lot of them actually. Especially the literature and music from Pakistan. Saadat Hasan Manto, Jon Elia, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Ahmad Faraz, Qatell shifai, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan are the few names.
Tell us about India, Are there more similarities in India and Pakistan than differences?
I think there are more similarities than differences between these two countries, we are practically same, same weather, languages, food, music, cultures. The differences are rather just on the political front.
How many films have you made? And which one is your favorite?
I have worked mostly in Non-Fiction Genre. One Documentary is also under post production. I have shot a lot of digital films for various brands. I have shot several short films as well. Extensively covered motorsports all over the country.
I have also been traveling and filmed all across India and Europe and Bhutan for my travel Series ‘I Walk the Earth’.
I think my favorite work of mine would be a short film that I shot, called Samaantar.
Are you a feminist?
Yes, but the tag of a “feminist” is being mocked nowadays, because of thanks to pseudo-feminism, who have made it rather it a Men Vs Women debate. But Yes, I do believe in equal rights of all genders, classes, and religions.
A website and/or blog you visit often?
Berlin ArtParasites, NoFilmSchool, Nerdwriter1, Flickr, Blog of Baradwaj Rangan, these are the websites or bloggers I often visit.
What is the best thing about India?
It’s cultural diversity. It’s amazing how many cultures, ethnicities co-exist in it and that’s the best part about it I guess.
Looking 10 years into future where would you like to be?
If you are on this journey called Art, I don’t think there is a destination to it. It’s just limitless, infinite. So, I don’t know where exactly, maybe in a remote part of the world, seeing life go by through the lens or scribbling on a paper. But what I am sure about is, 10 years down the line, I still want to see myself as eager as before to make art and touch people’s lives in some way or the other with it.
Do you have a bucket list? If so what is on it?
I think I do have, I never thought of it as a list, or maybe if I have, it’s ever-changing. A few things that stay constant are, travel the world, to be able to publish my poetry collection, and visiting Lahore is also on the list. One thing I ticked off the list recently was Reading Franz Kafka sitting on the stairs of his home, in Prague.
How would you like to be remembered as?
I would like to be remembered as someone who wasn’t in any kind of race, who created a space for himself and stayed true to his art and policies and tried touching people’s lives through his art.