Mithun, a wildlife photographer/influencer of MithunHPhotgraphy fame spends most of his time in the wild looking for the perfect moment to photograph big cats. We caught up with him to ask a few questions about what it’s really like to be an influencer. Mithun talks about passion, wildlife, photography skills and how he chooses the brands that he is working with.
Hi Mithun, How did you get into photography and profession? When did you develop an interest in the field?
Being born and brought up in a forest, I instinctively had a strong passion for wildlife. I spent a lot of time in the woods with just my binoculars. Photography only came into my radar when I realized that I had to capture these precious moments and show it to the world.
My love for the forest and wildlife has given me an edge of having a good eye towards the details.
How long before you considered this a career?
I was in IT for a while but this is what I have always wanted to do.
While the job has a very glamorous outlook, tell us about the hard work involved. Are the hours crazy?
Definitely. My projects sometimes keep me working for 20 hours a day. But at the end of the day, I spend 20 hours a day in a forest which is what I have always dreamt of. I can’t and won’t complain at all. I love what I do.
With so much competition in this field of photography, how do you manage to keep your content fresh?
Honestly, it is not an easy task. Photography is not a difficult genre and a lot of people are attracted to it. But for a picture to speak for itself and convey a story, it has to be unique. I sometimes tend to pre-visualize an image and work towards it. Before I expect to see a tiger or a leopard, I position myself accordingly and prepare my camera settings. A lot of homework and background thinking goes into a photo than just clicking the shutter button. Tracking and understand animal behavior is so critical. Randomly clicking and hoping that you would get a good picture out of the bunch is not how it works. Photography is not always about getting an expensive camera and clicking away. One of the main reasons why it works for me is because my passion started with wildlife itself.
A Green Vine Snake slowly slithers through the bamboo looking for potential prey. Shot on the new #Nokia8 with great macro capability, always handy to have to capture these quick and rare moments. #shotonnokia #expectmore . Thanks to Nokia mobile for getting me this great Nokia 8.1 device. . #nokia #wildlifephotography #bbc #instapic #instalike #kabini #earthcapture #instadaily #forest #natgeo #bbctravel #wild #wildlifeplanet #thebisonresort #love #discoverychannel #winter #nature #india #snake #naturephotography #wildlife #mithunhphotography #earthpix
A post shared by Mithun H (@mithunhphotography) on Mar 11, 2019 at 6:52am PDT
How do you choose the brands you work with?
Obviously, everyone would want to work for the best brands. I did work with Nokia for their new launch Nokia 8.1 and it has been one of my favorite brands for a long time.
With brands taking a keen interest in identifying and partnering with influencers like you, have you faced any ethical dilemma in choosing to work with the brands?
Of course! If a brand that doesn’t support wildlife or borders on animal cruelty approaches me for a collaboration, I would definitely hold myself back from working with that brand. This is a scenario I have faced before.
At the end of the day, I can’t put up bad quality content on my page that I know my followers will hate. Brands will come and go, but my audience loyalty is extremely important. Not only for me, but this also works for the brand. When they want me to put up their pics, we look for a mutually beneficial collaboration. Bad quality content is useful for neither for us. Giving independence for the creative process is very important.
Apart from work, what do you enjoy doing?
Because I spend so much time away from home and in the forest, I love going somewhere nice and spending time with my family. And escape the city traffic for sure! After the peace and tranquility in the woods, the city chaos is sometimes too much. Also, I love reading books which has a calming influence on me.
I also believe in constantly updating my skills. Photography is one craft that can’t be taught in a classroom. You have to be open to teaching yourself by getting your hands dirty on a trial and error basis.
Mithun’s social media has grown in proportion to the quality of the content he produces. His focus, first and foremost, is on producing great content which captures the attention of his audience. His social media following has happened as an outgrowth of that.