Ace photographer Gautam Rajadhyaksha deadSeptember 13th, 2011 - 6:34 pm ICT by IANS
Mumbai, Sep 13 (IANS) Well-knwown portrait photographer Gautam Rajadhyaksha passed away Tuesday following a massive heart attack, family sources said. He was 61.
Many political leaders expressed their condolences on his demise.
Maharashtra Governor K. Sankaranarayanan said that the media and the film industry has lost one of the finest craftsmen in photography.
“Shri Gautam Rajadhadhyaksha was one of the most respected names in the world of cinematography and still photography in the country. I had the privilege of meeting him on a couple of occasions and was touched by his simplicity. In his demise, we have lost one of the finest craftsmen in photography and a gem of a person,” he said.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan said: “His photo portraits spoke to you. He gave glamour to the world of photography in its true sense. Aside from being a great lensman, he was a great writer and critic. He will truly be missed.”
Senior Shiv Sena leader Bharatkumar Raut said: “It is a great loss for cultural Maharashtra. We have lost a ‘Face’ behind the camera. He was not only a photographer but a creative writer and a cultural thinker.
Union Science and Technology Minister and former Maharashtra chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh said: “Today, we have lost one of India’s best known celebrity portraitists, having photographed almost all the icons of Indian film industry.”
Rajadhyaksha, cousin of author Shobha De, was popular amongst all film personalities and worked on portraits of almost all the leading stars of Indian film industry.
Rajadhyaksha’s glamorous photo-shoots helped propel many actors, including Madhuri Dixit, to stardom. He also mentored many budding photographers.
A chemistry graduate from Mumbai’s St Xavier’s College, Rajadhyaksha taught there for two years, following which he joined the photo services department of leading advertising agency Lintas in 1974 and eventually became the departmental head.
What started as a hobby soon became a profession for Rajadhyaksha. During his stint at Lintas, he participated in the creation of milestone advertising campaigns, while continuing his childhood passion of photography during the weekends.
His first encounter with fashion photography was in 1980, when he happened to shoot pictures of actress Shabana Azmi (a college mate), Tina Munim and Jackie Shroff and after that there was no looking back.
He left his advertising job in 1987 and took up commercial photography full-time, and soon started doing product campaigns, media assignments and fashion portfolios.
Rajadhyaksha was a keen collector of opera recordings and has held several talk shows on the subject. He was also involved with projects concerning Western and Indian Classical music.
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