Man Behind The Background:
In the domain of photography in Assam, the
name Tapan Das needs no introduction. His
photographs have graced the pages of different
news papers and magazines. He was the ex-
president of all Assam Photo Journalists Union.
Tapan Das had worked in 16 Assamese Feature films
and some documentary films as a still
photographer. Tapan Das fascination for still
photography began from young age and ever since,
heal ways carries a camera with him to capture the
wonder of nature and other great moments.
Born and brought up in Nalbari District, Das
always natured a dream of being a still
photographer. Mr. Das didn't take any formal
education on photography. He only studied
different books on photography and gathered a vast
knowledge in this field. Popular cinematographer
Indukalpa Hazarika helped him in learning
different aspects of photography.
Tapan Das was interested in photography since his
very childhood. His first news photograph was
published in 'The Assam Tribune'- of the Assam
Movement in 1979. Then he joined the 'Natun Dainik',
a local daily, and worked there for eleven years
and later he became the Chief photographer. He had
the nature of 'Assam Institute of Photography' for
five years from 1989 to 1994 and he was also the
visiting lecturer on still photography section at
Jyoti Chitraban Film and Television Institute,
He received his best photo journalist's about from
Assam Sport Association in 1986. In 1989 the Assam
UNESCO club honored him with the 'Nabin Suriya'
award. He received the best regional photo
journalist award by Tami Nadu photographic society
in 1981. He also won the photography competition
twice held by 'Mirror magazine'.
With a view to provide interested persons with
technical knowledge in photography, Tapan Das has
established a well equipped still (colour & B/W),
video photography & cinematography training
institute in Guwahati. The institute which came up
in 1995 provides an eight month certificate course
in photography. Student from interior of the state
come to learn photography here. Students from
Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh
also come to take admission in the institute under
the government quota. This are two study sessions
in a year. One which stats in January and the
other in July. Some of his students have chosen
media photography, cinema still photography,
cinema still photography as their profession and
many have established their own business.
To impart training in photography on a scientific
and systematic basis there is hardly any institute
in Assam. Some sporadic efforts have been made by
some individuals who didn't have either required
experience or the expertise to teach photography.
At the same time there is a growing need for
trained persons who could be absorbed by the Govt.
Department and man- media etc. Present (10+2)
system of education also lays stress on importance
of this need. With a view to meet the dearth of
trained people in the field of photography this
institute has been established.
Admission to the institute is open to anyone
keenly interested to learn photography, but
knowledge of English and Assamese is essential.
Due to limited space only a small number of
students will be admitted to the advance, basic
and crash courses which will be of 1 year, 8
months and 3 months duration respectively. In
basic course there are two sessions.
First session begins from the month of January and
concludes in the month of August and second
session begins in month of July and concludes in
the month of February.
First three months of each session begins with
theory class followed by practical class in next
five months. As the session ends, a final
examination is being held carrying 400 marks (4
nos. of paper) and the students will have to
secure minimum 40% marks in each paper.
Successfully students will be issued with
efficiency certificate. No certificate will be
issued to unsuccessful students; therefore any
claim for the same will not be entertained. During
practical period, camera, film, paper and chemical
will be supplied free of cost. Classes are being
held once in a week (i.e. only on Sunday for 3
hours) and practical classes will be held on
Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The students will
attend any one of the days mentioned above.
Practice classes are also held on Tuesday,
Wednesday, and Thursday.
The students can enroll themselves as a member for
extra time practice to get acquainted with the
trade on payment of Rs. 500.00 & they will be
guided by teacher if necessary for a period of 5
months. They will have to buy film, paper,
chemical etc. from the institute.
Camera and other camera related accessories are
being provided to them free of charge.
Moreover, other three crash courses are also being
held on videography, still photography and digital
photography. Time duration for these courses is
only three months each. Classes are being held
three days in a week and the session beings from
the date of admission.