El Estoque

The art of photography: MVHS student Abhilasha Goel takes on a new hobby

Anthony Moll

Sophomore Abhilasha Goel dusted off her old  2007 Kodak and explored a new hobby after taking part in a photo shoot with her friends. In this video, she describes what photography means to her and how the new hobby has allowed her to be a more proactive person. Goel continues to learn photography through the Instagram and MVHS Photo club. Learn more about Goel’s experience with photography and how her new-found hobby isn’t just a trend.

[embedyt] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmPgsSDXuls[/embedyt]


The following is from El Estoque’s March 2017 issue.
By Ananya Bhat and Trisha Kholiya 

She can still faintly remember her first photoshoot: a makeshift shoot on the Don Burnett Bicycle-Pedestrian bridge off of Homestead Road last summer. It was her shot — a way to attempt long exposure photography shots under the intense light of the sun. Messing around with the dials on top of her 2007 Kodak camera, sophomore Abhilasha Goel had her first real exposure to photography.
She had done it before, a little. But to her, photography is more than just clicking the camera until she gets the perfect picture — it’s also finding the perfect location. In her phone, Goel notes a list of places that she drives by or hears about to explore and capture through her photoshoots — places like the Pace Gallery in Palo Alto and Christmas in the Park.
As a fairly new photographer, Goel still finds herself getting accustomed to the dials and settings on her camera. For one, she hasn’t gotten around to purchasing a newer DSLR, so her old Kodak is difficult for her to understand. After being accustomed to taking photos on her phone, the many settings on her camera were just confusing. At times, she’d look down at her photos only to notice something seemed off about them.
Joining the MVHS Photo Club gave her a great support system to begin learning how to navigate her camera. With the club’s help, the steady support of her friends and the internet, Goel has learned more of the technical side of photography. Once she got comfortable enough with the camera to understand what the settings did, it was easy for her to use her computer to do research on more interesting features, like how the time of day and number of people played into the composition of the photo.
But, at least for now, the models for her photoshoots only come from her group of friends. Her photoshoots give them an outlet to experience new things together, to hang out and have fun.
While the photoshoots give her a sense of excitement and adventure, it’s the end result that makes Goel happiest. When she gets home from a shoot, Goel immediately removes the photos from her SD card and onto her computer to prevent losing photos to SD card malfunctions. Within a day or two, after editing them using the photo editor Polarr, Goel finally gets to see what she wants to. The pose, the photo, the edits — it’s all perfect.
She showcases these edited photos on her personal Instagram account, with a starting following base of just her friends — a total of over 100 followers.
When her photos on Instagram get more comments, they become more popular and viewable through the hashtags they’re characterized under. One of her recent photos got comments not just from her friends, but from photographers in other states and countries too. It’s comments like this, detailed comments on the thought she put into her photos, that Goel appreciates — an indication of her improvement over time.
It’s been approximately six months since Goel had her first photoshoot, making photography one of her more long-standing hobbies. After trying out painting, calligraphy, perler beads and other artistic crafts, photography has been the only thing that’s stuck for her. It has given her a reason to do something more than just sit at home.
“I think I’ve found an actual hobby, because before I just sort of did things here and there or I just like sat around and did nothing,” Goel said.

About the Writer
Anthony Moll, staff writer
Anthony Moll is a senior and second year staff member of El Estoque. He enjoys covering the various sports programs at MVHS. He is also a part of the MVHS baseball team and hopes to continue playing at Trinity University in San Antonio next year.