An English teacher at PSBB, Pallavi’s photographs have been shortlisted for National Geographic’s Incredible India Series 2018. Recently, an image was bought by Ripley’s Entertainment. “I was working with Unicef on their Child Right’s Project; this directed me towards taking up education as a profession. When I picked up the camera five years ago, it was not only because of my love for nature and her species but also to create a sense of awareness among the younger generation to appreciate the natural world. I do my bit by inculcating these values in my students and also add to the pressing need for conservation as means of external learning in my classroom,” says Pallavi. American naturalist John Burroughs cautioned that, “Knowledge without love will not stick. But if love comes first, knowledge is sure to follow.” Through her work, she is asking her students to develop their love for the Earth, before asking them to save it.
“A photograph is particularly powerful because it is accessible to most of humanity. I can’t imagine my life without all these encounters, so enriching, so surprising, so astonishing. Nature is the diadem that glorifies our planet. It is the very soul and spirit of our earth,” muses Pallavi. Having no professional training in photography, she is blessed with mentors like Marzook Mohammed and Masood Hussain, both well-known names in the photography circle.
Sharing with us about her most memorable moment, the photographer reminisces, “There is an old saying that a good picture of a common subject will always be better than a poor one of a rare subject. Perhaps that was the reason why on a Tiger Safari at Bandipur Tiger Reserve what stole my heart was not the roar of a big cat but the gestures of a little macaque. I have always found them to be extremely expressive. While waiting at the safari gate, I saw this little brat up to mischief. He was soon attracted to the rear-view mirror of a vehicle parked ahead of me. On seeing his reflection, his expressions changed for sheer amazement to adoration. It was a perfect candid moment. This image was published by BBC, New York Post, Times Weekly US and was recently bought by Ripley’s Entertainment.”
Also an avid birder, Pallavi spends her weekends at Pallikaranai wetland and OMR stretch. “I find bird photography very fascinating because it is unlike your regular safari photography. You have to go very close to the bird and wait for the right moment to get the perfect picture,” she says.