Sanasam Doney or Doney Sanasam is known for his penchant for wedding portraits and dramatic compositions. One of the best in the wedding photography industry, Doney was introduced to photography at a very young age. Although, his parents were not very sure about the feasibility of photography as a career, Doney took up wedding photography under the able guidance of his uncle who owned a photo studio back in the early 2000’s.
His love for the art of photography and his dedication to his clients is something which has made him one of the top photographers of our times. In a quick chat with the master, we got a sneak peak into his world.
ManipuriWeddings: Let’s start with the generic. Please tell us a little about yourself.
Doney Sanasam: My name is Sanasam Doney but people know me as Doney Sanasam . I love photography and was introduced to the art very early on. And I like every type of photography. It is very important for every photographer to expose themselves to every kind of photography. I am always ready to explore if I get a chance.
MW: Yes. We have seen some of your portfolio work and others.
Doney: Yeah, I am not only a wedding photographer.
MW: So, how did wedding happen and how many weddings have you covered so far?
Doney: I have been doing wedding since 2004. It was a part of my studio job where I worked under one of my uncles. We had a photo studio at Kwakeithel and I was working there as my part time job that time. Just a year after I completed my graduation.
My point here is I can’t reckon the exact numbers of weddings I have done so far.
MW: So it just happened. Then, you must have covered a lot if you were working since 2004!
Doney: Right! That time there was no digital thing. I think you remember the film rolls which need, actually, pretty lots of processing.
MW: Yeah! So you started with working in dark rooms with all that reels.
Doney: We did processing ourselves like developing, processing printing in a small dark rooms. It was a valuable experience and very interesting with lots of fun.
MW: Yeah. It always intrigued me how you put in a sheet of paper into the water and comes out with a pretty image
Doney: Yeah Right! I think you have the idea. It was so cool. I still need to find out and learn about the chemical processes and all that which came with the process. Hehehe…
MW: Yeah! I’m sure. It must have been fun!
Doney: Definitely! I had enjoyed a lot. But now is a different thing. It is all digital now.
MW: Coming back to the present, how many weddings do you take in a season?
Doney: I normally take 3 to 4 weddings during a season or a month these days. There was a time, a few years back, I use to take on all the orders without a break. I made lots of money with that. Haha… But I realised it was a mistake.
MW: Considering the fact that wedding photography doesn’t end with just taking pictures. So tell us what is the favourite part of the job.
Doney: My favourite part of my work is when my client appreciate my work no matter what others says. And the worst thing is when I find myself not keeping up my word. It happens sometimes, honestly speaking. Then, I feel like cursing myself.
MW: Yeah but it’s part of the job. Some inconvenience is always there.
Doney: But I am very happy that most of my clients understand me and still encourage me.
MW: Because, they know you are great at your job.
Doney: My weakness is the delivery time.
MW: Is it the processing time?
Doney: Yeah, but I am working on it and should be able to overcome this very soon.
MW: So do you have assistants working with you?
Doney: Yeah. I do have assistants and I am trying to organise different departments so that we don’t have to end up doing the same mistakes.
MW: So do you have a separate editing team?
Doney: We already have a good editing team but we are appointing two more for editing section. We have so many people lined up. I got many calls from some interested people. So let’s see.
MW: So how do you line up your assignment for a particular season?
Doney: About the bookings, our facebook page helps me a great deal. Most of our clients contact me through the facebook page. Before I created this page they used to contact me indirectly. May be through friends or relatives or they would contact my recent clients.
MW: So now you have videos as well right? Videography I mean.
Doney: Yes, I have my videography team too. But its not compulsory for the client to hire both. It’s an option.
MW: So what are the packages like? Combination of services and pricing?
Doney: The charges differ according to location and client preferences. Like some clients wants us to shoot only the Heijingpot and the Luhongba while others want us for 4-5 events. There are others who do not want an outdoor shoot. So we charge differently for different packages.
MW: So it includes pre-wedding and post-wedding shoot?
Doney: The client can choose either pre or post wedding shoot. The charges is different only according to the number of days or events we shoot.
MW: Ok Great. So if anyone wants to know more about your charges, they can just leave a message on your Facebook page.
MW: We see a crop of young photographers who are taking up wedding photography. What would you like to tell them.
Doney: To all the young blood, I would like to tell them that Photography is an art. And that they should respect their profession as well the ethical boundaries that come along with being a photographer. “You should know the value of your work and the amount you charge from your client should not only reflect in the end products (photo album/ videos) but also your dedication to the art of photography itself.”
MW: Thank you. That’s a wonderful message.
Doney: All I want to say is it should be a combination of passion, good work and professionalism. Right?
MW: Yes, and we at ManipuriWeddings are also trying to give new and younger photographer enough space in our site but we need a solid base to start out. So we decided to start with the seniors in the field.
Doney: Yes. I really appreciate the work you are doing. It’s a great platform.
MW: Thank you for your cooperation. Anyway, you are doing a great job this season. We are loving your photos. We hope to see more coming.
Doney: I am still learning photography with every wedding assignment. I hope and work hard to give you a better one than before. Thank you so much for your cooperation.
MW: Thank You. We look forward to an exciting season!
Read more about Wedding Photography in Manipur!
Note: To find out more about Doney and his work you can check out his Facebook page.