Muscat: A new photography group set up by the Indian Social Club aims to conduct a series of photography workshops in schools and colleges in Oman.
The Indian Social Club Photography Group (ISCPG) was officially inaugurated by Munu Mahawar, India’s Ambassador to the Sultanate of Oman, on Friday, 2 August 2019, at the Indian Embassy auditorium.
The inaugural function was followed by a photography exhibition that showcased the beauty of Oman’s landscapes and its amazing culture. The display had a collection of 49 pictures each taken by a different photographer to honour the 49th year of the blessed Renaissance.
Speaking to Times of Oman, P Dharmendran, a committee member of the new group, said, “we as a group of photographers were very passionate about sharing our art and our subject with those who wanted to know more about this in Oman, and so we wanted to set up workshops and seminars in schools and colleges, but we were unable to do that on our own.
“Now that we are under the Indian Social Club, we have that ability to provide assistance to those who wish it,” he added. “A lot of young photographers in Oman have previously approached us for training, but of course, we were limited in our official capacity. Now, we can do that and point them in the direction of people who could be able to help them. We will definitely help those who come to us with any questions on photography.”
“If you want to become a professional in this field, it is only natural that you will have doubts and look to others in your field to help you, so we can definitely arrange that,” added Dharmendran. “If you are following photography as a passion or as your hobby, we are definitely happy to help you out in that aspect as well, because we have many talented photographers who specialise in different areas of photography, so anyone is welcome to work with or learn from us.”
The idea of the ISCPG came about as a continuation of the activities of a group known as Friday Shoot Out Muscat, one of the most active photography groups in the Sultanate. The group has more than 350 active contributors and a passionate social media following of over 4000 online members. Over the last seven years, the group has successfully conducted over 250 events around the country, exploring more than 75 different locations in its weekly photo walks, besides successfully organising photography workshops, large scale exhibitions, online competitions and publishing a coffee
The underlying objective of Friday Shoot Out Muscat is not only to collectively improve the photography skills of its participants, but also to provide people with a pastime at weekends, allowing them to meet like-minded photography enthusiasts and have fun, while exploring the beauty of the Sultanate of Oman and beyond. The Indian Social Club Photography Group will continue to epitomise these objectives.
“When I undertake photography, it acts as an escape and allows me to focus just on getting that one perfect photo,” said Dharmendran, who is himself a photographer. “We are now looking to organise workshops in schools and colleges to spread awareness and handle any questions that the youth may have about photography. There are some really talented young Omanis and expats here who take some very good photos.”
As part of the inauguration, ISCPG also conducted a free Basic Photography Workshop on 2nd August, conducted by experts from the group.
He added: “When you take that photo, it sometimes acts as a stress-buster, because you forget everything else and are focused on getting that one shot. Oman has a lot of great landscapes for people to photograph, from the deserts of Sharqiyah to the mountains of Jabal Akhdar. Right now, you have the Khareef festival in Salalah and so many iconic landmarks in Muscat, so it is definitely a great place for photographers.”