Continuing Education + Job Training // Publishing since 1999

Life as we don’t know it

Life as we don’t know it

“Have you ever wondered what life would look like if we lived as we did not know it?” my grandmother asked a loaded question, looking at me and sipping her tea intently. I looked up from what I was doing, eyeing her, and she continued.

Humanity has been blessed with a magical superpower called photography to perceive this curiosity. Once bestowed, that superpower can never be taken aback, be it a boon or a bane,” she tittered and added, “20 years of owing this business and being a photographer, I can tell you what it is like to view life via a camera lens, it is like getting teleported to places unheard of some inhabited some thronged with human populations and experiencing abnormal, exceptional emotions just like tidal waves on full moon nights. Candidly, it is a ticket to limitless creative possibilities where the world is your canvas; either you create one masterpiece after another and curate your portfolio carefully, or you don’t.

Fascinatingly, though, it also mirrors our ordinary lives, where we walk down the same streets, taking mundane routes, passing by familiar nooks and corners, and noticing something hidden in plain sight and capturing it, making it extraordinary and strangely unpredictable. This gives us this adrenaline rush of living life like we don’t know it.

Giving someone a camera is passing on that superpower; the more you use it, the more you can see the real you, past all the limitations and hesitations to make an epic story. This is why passing this to you makes me extremely proud and emotional, my child. My love, show this business your passion and let it choose you, too. When you picked up my camera when you were little, I knew I had found my one true heir.” Overwhelmed with emotions, she concluded by hugging me, handing me my first-ever camera, which I picked up from her to start shooting randomly, and walked away, leaving me stunned.

Little did I know that one summer afternoon, my legendary National Geographic photographer grandmother would choose me to carry on her legacy.

Samanvitha Oruganti is an avid storyteller who likes narrating stories about people, emotions, and places. She believes our world has innumerable tales, some hidden, some not, but all waiting to be told. She can be reached via email at

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