Taj - An Enigma


Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about.

During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments:

Posted by Ripple (VJ) on PHOTO JOURNEY @ www.travellingcamera.com : ripple, Vijay Kumar Sharma, ripple4photography, Frozen Moments, photographs, Photography, ripple (VJ), VJ, Ripple (VJ) Photography, Capture Present for Future, Freeze Present for Future, ripple (VJ) Photographs , VJ Photographs, Ripple (VJ) Photography : Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about. During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments: Tajmahal @ Agra, Utter Pradesh, INDIA: In most of my pictures, underexposing has helped produce dramatic results.
In most of my pictures, underexposing has helped produce dramatic results.


Posted by Ripple (VJ) on PHOTO JOURNEY @ www.travellingcamera.com : ripple, Vijay Kumar Sharma, ripple4photography, Frozen Moments, photographs, Photography, ripple (VJ), VJ, Ripple (VJ) Photography, Capture Present for Future, Freeze Present for Future, ripple (VJ) Photographs , VJ Photographs, Ripple (VJ) Photography : Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about. During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments: Tajmahal @ Agra, Utter Pradesh, INDIA: In this picture, while the whiteness of Taj has been de-emphasized, I have tried to bring out its beauty by contrasting it against the deep blue sky.
In this picture, while the whiteness of Taj has been de-emphasized, I have tried to bring out its beauty by contrasting it against the deep blue sky.

How to Reach Agra ?

How to commute : There is Shatabdi train available from Delhi to Agra but I recommend to commute via road to save time, as taking a train would also mean commute to/from railway stations and anyway you need to hire taxi for moving between Taj Mahal, Fatehpur Sikri and Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. Now, there are 3 options - drive your own car if you live in Delhi/NCR and if you are visiting Delhi, you can either take a taxi or rent a car for self-drive. 



Posted by Ripple (VJ) on PHOTO JOURNEY @ www.travellingcamera.com : ripple, Vijay Kumar Sharma, ripple4photography, Frozen Moments, photographs, Photography, ripple (VJ), VJ, Ripple (VJ) Photography, Capture Present for Future, Freeze Present for Future, ripple (VJ) Photographs , VJ Photographs, Ripple (VJ) Photography : Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about. During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments: Tajmahal @ Agra, Utter Pradesh, INDIA: The inky blue waters of Yamuna flowing behind Taj add to the serenity of the landscape and makes it more photograph friendly.

The inky blue waters of Yamuna flowing behind Taj add to the serenity of the landscape and makes it more photograph friendly.

Where to stay : If you intend to visit these 3 places, 2 obvious places to spend night are Agra or Bharatpur. And I recommend Bharatpur as an option to stay because that would be most beneficial in terms of managing your time and travel distances on both days. As itinerary mentioned below mentions to cover Bharatpur on second day and early you start your day at Kaoladeo Bird Sanctuary, the better would be your day with thousands of birds with hundreds of species at one place.  

Posted by Ripple (VJ) on PHOTO JOURNEY @ www.travellingcamera.com : ripple, Vijay Kumar Sharma, ripple4photography, Frozen Moments, photographs, Photography, ripple (VJ), VJ, Ripple (VJ) Photography, Capture Present for Future, Freeze Present for Future, ripple (VJ) Photographs , VJ Photographs, Ripple (VJ) Photography : Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about. During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments: Tajmahal @ Agra, Utter Pradesh, INDIA: I tried to explore the lower boundaries of the exposure in this picture. The result brought out the sun rays and the contrasting shadows make the picture more dramatic.

I tried to explore the lower boundaries of the exposure in this picture. The result brought out the sun rays and the contrasting shadows make the picture more dramatic.

Scams to be aware about :

One of the important thing to be aware of is to know about these places in advance so that nobody takes advantage out of you and you feel like a fool at the end of your trip. If you plan to visit via taxi, we strongly recommend to have a trustworthy drive with you. If you have good driver, he would not let you come under influence of local touts at these places. Be sure about choosing people for help at these tourist places. If you intend to take guides, ensure that you hire from counter and always chose govt approved tour guides. Ask for identity card. Don't miss the link below, as it has some specific details about scammers around fatehpur Sikri. 


Posted by Ripple (VJ) on PHOTO JOURNEY @ www.travellingcamera.com : ripple, Vijay Kumar Sharma, ripple4photography, Frozen Moments, photographs, Photography, ripple (VJ), VJ, Ripple (VJ) Photography, Capture Present for Future, Freeze Present for Future, ripple (VJ) Photographs , VJ Photographs, Ripple (VJ) Photography : Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about. During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments: Tajmahal @ Agra, Utter Pradesh, INDIA: Here are some experiments with Saturation. I used Adobe Camera Raw to attain the saturated look of the lamp post in the foreground and the green field.

Here are some experiments with Saturation. I used Adobe Camera Raw to attain the saturated look of the lamp post in the foreground and the green field.

Let's now talk about a good itinerary for a good weekend around Taj Mahal, Fatehpur Sikri and Bharatpur Sikri : 
  1. Start early in the morning from Delhi/Noida, so that you reach Agra entry gate by the time entry starts. The drive is approximately 4 hrs, so plan accordingly.
  2. Visit Taj Mahal as you reach Agra, spend time around Taj Mahal and then can plan Agra Fort. Have your lunch in Agra city and then head towards Fatehpur Sikri. 
  3. Visit Fatehpur Sikri Palace and the Jama Mosque compound with Bland Darwaza & Dargah. 
  4. All these 3 places (Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri) can be visited in a day and then you can head towards Bharatpur. It's 30 minutes drive to Bharatpur from Fatehpur, so there is no need to rush in Fatehpur Sikri. 
  5. On the way to Bharatpur, buy some fruits, drinks and snacks for next day and I recommend not to book hotel with breakfast option unless you want to take it easy next morning and it's ok for you to start a little late for sanctuary. 
  6. Check-in to your hotel in Bharatpur, have dinner and take rest. 
  7. Plan to get up early in the morning as entry gates of Bird Sanctuary opens at 6:30 am. Bird sighting is best in the morning hours. 
  8. Depending upon how much time you want to spend inside the sanctuary, plan your checkout. I recommend to check-out before going inside the sanctuary. 
  9. Take enough eatables with you as it may take good amount of time inside and there is not much inside to have breakfast of lunch.
  10. When done, come out and have late lunch. Start your journey back to Delhi.

Posted by Ripple (VJ) on PHOTO JOURNEY @ www.travellingcamera.com : ripple, Vijay Kumar Sharma, ripple4photography, Frozen Moments, photographs, Photography, ripple (VJ), VJ, Ripple (VJ) Photography, Capture Present for Future, Freeze Present for Future, ripple (VJ) Photographs , VJ Photographs, Ripple (VJ) Photography : Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about. During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments: Tajmahal @ Agra, Utter Pradesh, INDIA: These pigeons perched on the top of the dome provide a spectacular contrast to an otherwise uninteresting picture.

These pigeons perched on the top of the dome provide a spectacular contrast to an otherwise uninteresting picture.


Posted by Ripple (VJ) on PHOTO JOURNEY @ www.travellingcamera.com : ripple, Vijay Kumar Sharma, ripple4photography, Frozen Moments, photographs, Photography, ripple (VJ), VJ, Ripple (VJ) Photography, Capture Present for Future, Freeze Present for Future, ripple (VJ) Photographs , VJ Photographs, Ripple (VJ) Photography : Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about. During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments: Tajmahal @ Agra, Utter Pradesh, INDIA: The red buildings are easier to photograph than the white ones.

The red buildings are easier to photograph than the white ones.


Posted by Ripple (VJ) on PHOTO JOURNEY @ www.travellingcamera.com : ripple, Vijay Kumar Sharma, ripple4photography, Frozen Moments, photographs, Photography, ripple (VJ), VJ, Ripple (VJ) Photography, Capture Present for Future, Freeze Present for Future, ripple (VJ) Photographs , VJ Photographs, Ripple (VJ) Photography : Taj Mahal is an enigma. Not only in the aesthetic sense, but also from a photographer's point of view. While it is a monument of every photographer's dreams, it is very difficult to get a good picture of it. Why? Because it is white. And if you have ever taken photography a little seriously, you will understand what I am talking about. During my last visit to Agra, I tried to get some good pictures of Taj. But it took a lot of playing around with the Aperture and Shutter Speed to get decent pictures. Here are some of my experiments: Tajmahal @ Agra, Utter Pradesh, INDIA: A Panorama of the Taj and the surrounding lawns

A Panorama of the Taj and the surrounding lawns

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