Virendra K

Virendra K : In Conversation With A Cinematographer

Virendra K is Indian cinematographer of Bollywood movies,He studied cinematography at the Film and Television Institute (Applied Videography) Bhopal M.P.He has been working in bollywood since 2001 till today. His IMDB Link is here.

As a child what were your early influences towards cinema?
As a child I was never influenced by any cinema because I was not thinking about movies indeed I was not aware of cinema! Everything happened! I would say it was the happiest accident of my life.

How did you first become interested in cinematography? Did you start with photography?
Yes I had started with still photography, those were days when we were clicking on negative it was an interesting process because before processing I won’t able to see image there was always a curiosity to see the result, I used to process negative and make print my self and enjoyed that whole process which created my interest towards cinematography .

What steps did you take to train yourself?
I studied cinematography in Film School Bhopal (M.P.), Institute created a passion for cinema. I observe ideas from nature, watching paintings that help me a lot and I do study cinematography even today, everyday, and watch a lot of cinema for inspiration.

Have you assisted anyone? How does it help one?
Yes I have assisted senior FTII Alumni Alok Upadhyay. I have been fortunate to got mentor like Alok Ji who taught me like a teacher even life lessons. After that I got the opportunity to work with senior cinematographers like Rafey Mahmood Sir, Paramvir Singh sir (National Award Winner Cinematographer), Setu Da working with all of them is another film school and helping me in cinematography.

How did your first film project come about?
It’s been very interesting, I come across with one Director who shared me his short film script, and I liked his concept, then we met the late Tom Alter Sir who loved the script too. The Director and myself arranged some money and shot that film on 16 mm and it came out very well, that’s how I have started as a cinematographer.

What is perhaps the most important factor for you to choose a script?
When I meet any Director who is passionate about making his film, his love for cinema, matching our thoughts for film, and then I read the script.

Is cinematography intuitive or is it something you learn?
Both, when you are thinking cinematography all the time gradually nature starts giving you ideas which help you create good cinematography. And learning is also a very important factor. Suppose you have a brilliant idea but you don’t know how to get this result you won’t able to deliver good images that’s why cinematography is intuitive n learning both are important.

Tell us something about your latest film.
my latest web series “Kamathipura” released on Disney Hotstar.
Recently I am filming a Punjabi language feature film “Udeekan Teriyaan” .

Where do you seek inspiration from?
As I earlier said I am observing ideas from nature, watching paintings and watching cinema inspires me .

What is in the kitty right now?
I have one very interesting Hindi film which is close to my heart, I won’t be able to talk much because of a non-disclosure clause.

What’s your dream project?
Every Assignment is a dream project because you can’t compare one with another, every film has its own beauty, done with passion and honesty .

Your most memorable blunder?
Well I would not say memorable, It was a blunder,
We were shooting on stock using Arri 435 ES camera, I used to load and unload magazines. One day during unload of exposed footage I, by mistake removed the bobbin and spool of the film film in the changing bag. It was a big mistake, and I couldn’t fix it. Thankfully a senior came and helped me fix it.

Any advice to the inspiring cinematographers?
Learning is a lifetime process. We learn everyday, we learn from nature, we learn from society, we learn from mistakes, we are good students and I believe study is the most important factor which will give you knowledge about work, knowledge will create passion and passion will create magic in your work.

What book, music, movie are you enjoying right now?
I am reading a book called “Every frame A Rembrandt” by Andrew Laszlo.
The Taste of music keeps changing everyday. Generally I enjoy listening to Mahdi Hassan and a few tracks of Budhabaar. Plenty of films in my kitty I would say in recent days
The film “1917” by Sam Mendes, I absolutely loved it. Right now I am watching the series “The Witcher”.

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