DAZZLING Pictures of Aishwarya, Kareena, Ranbir
Ace photographer Dabboo Ratnani presents yet another spread of dazzling pictures of Bollywood stars in his 2013 calendar.
From Salman Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Kareena Kapoor, Hrithik Roshan and Ranbir Kapoor right down to the newest entries in the industry Varun Dhawan and Aliya Bhatt, all the stars have been beautifully photographed in the new calendar.
Dabboo offers Sonil Dedhia a sneak peek, and also shares some interesting behind-the-scenes details:
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Make-up: Subhash Vagal
Styling: Tanya Ghavri
Outfit: Christian Dior
Aishwarya has always been a part of my calendar. I knew her even before she became an actress. She has always looked stunning.
The focus of this picture is Aishwarya's eyes and expression. She has the most beautiful eyes, and she knows how to express, and camera angles.
We did not really start out with any concept. The laptop that you see in the picture was always there, so I thought of including it in the frame and brought it even closer.
This is like a picture-in-picture concept -- capturing a moment and you can see it happening right there next to you.
What I love about Aishwarya is that she knows how to pose and work her body, and work her attitude. That's why she is one of the most beautiful models I have ever shot. She always makes amazing pictures.
Image: Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
'Aishwarya is always open for experiment'
Aishwarya is always open for experiment. Every time we have shot, we have tried to do something different. We have experimented with make-up, hair, looks and locations.
She may be one of the biggest actresses but she is very warm.
She has a very good memory. I recently met her at Vidya Balan's wedding reception, and we spoke about some photo shoot that we had done in 1999 and she remembered every single word of that conversation!
Image: Dabboo Ratnani, Myrah, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Kiara and Manisha Ratnani
'Kareena has always been very confident'
Make-up: Subhash Vagal
Hair-styling: Tanya Ghavri
Kareena was the first person that I shot for my calendar, we shot it a month before her wedding.
I did not make an effort to make Kareena look hot or beautiful. She has always been very confident, and is easy to work with.
I first met her in 1993, when she was just a kid. I was shooting with (Kareena's sister) Karisma Kapoor for her film Aatish. Aatish was my first assignment and Kareena had come down to Mauritius, where we were shooting.
I knew right then that she would be a stunner when she joined the industry.
Image: Kareena Kapoor
'Kareena can go to any extent to get her picture right'
The first time she ever faced the camera was with me. We have done a lot of photo shoots together and she always makes for a beautiful picture.
She is very photogenic and she knows how to work herself in front of the camera.
She is also very focused. She can go to any extent to get her picture right. At the same time, she doesn't have to make an extra effort. It comes naturally to her.
Image: Kareena Kappor, Myrah and Dabboo Ratnani
'Ranbir never asks questions'
Make-up: Ajay Naik
Hair-styling: Alim @ Hakim's Alim
Outfit and Styling: Tanya Fraser
Ranbir has always been a fun-loving guy. He told me he will do my calendar every year, as long as he remains in the industry.
He jokes: 'Even if you don't have space for me, just put me on the index page.'
For this picture, we kept high contrasts with a grungy look. Ranbir never asks questions. He just follows instructions and is open to experiments.
Image: Ranbir Kapoor
'Ranbir is the next big star of Bollywood'
Since he's from a film family, he knows the way we function. He enjoys photo shoots thoroughly and puts in the right amount of energy to get the right picture.
We share a special bond.
He has a subtle but crazy sense of humour. He is a great actor. He is definitely the next big star of Bollywood.
Image: Dabboo Ratnani and Ranbir Kapoor
'Anushka has a stunning body'
Make-up: Puneet B Saini
Hair-styling: Richard Wilkinson
Outfit and Styling: Allia Al Rufai
This is my second calendar shoot with her. She loves to pose for the cameras. She has a stunning body. The way she carries off her clothes is amazing.
In this picture, Anushka is wearing hot denim pants and a shimmering body suit. We decided to give it a vintage Hollywood noir look.
You notice that she is sitting on these huge trunks that people use when travelling. There is a vintage clock in the background.
Image: Anushka Sharma
'Anushka is is very effortless in front of the camera'
Anushka is very versatile. I had shot a jewellery advertisement with her, where she was wearing bridal clothes and she looked beautiful. She is very effortless in front of the camera.She has a lot of energy and enjoys photo shoots. We always try and push the boundaries and outdo ourselves each time.
Image: Dabboo Ratnani, Myrah and Anushka Sharma
'I wanted to capture the various moods of John Abraham'
Hair-styling: Neha Gadhwalla
I have done a lot of bare body shoots with John in the past and that is what people always associate him with. I didn't want to get into that zone and so I decided to do something different.
This is the first time I have used 16 images on one page. In the past, we had these contact sheets on which we would print our negatives of the pictures taken. It helped us see all the pictures at all, so that we could select the best one. This picture was more like a tribute to the days when I started off as a photographer.
I just briefed John to give different expressions. I didn't tell him what else to do, I wanted to capture the various moods of John Abraham.
I kept on talking to him and clicking pictures. Then, I left it to him, and the music on the sets.I kept the background and his clothes dark and the whole image black and white so that people can only see the whiteness of his skin tone.
Image: John Abraham
'John is a perfect combination of brawn and brain'
I have known John since he was in standard six. He was two years junior to me in school.
I shot his first portfolio. He had come to my house and seemed tense. He asked me whether he should do a folio because he was concerned that he is investing a lot of money and might not get any returns.He is a very simple guy but very smart -- he's a smart businessman. He is a perfect combination of brawn and brain.
Image: John Abraham and Dabboo Ratnani
'I had this rock star image of Farhan'
Make-up: Swapnil Pathare
Hair-styling: Nidhi Chang Malhotra @ b: blunt
Styling: Tanya Fraser
Farhan and I go back a long way. He has been my younger sister's friend from college days. We have known each other as Bandra Boys much before he became a director and I became a photographer.
He was always into singing and rock music -- he liked Guns 'n Roses and (their lead guitarist) Slash. Somewhere, I had this rock star image of him and wanted to shoot him in that image.
He had long hair during his film Rock On! but after that, maintained a short hairstyle. He grew his hair again for Bhaag Milkha Bhaag and this time, I grabbed the opportunity with both hands.
In this picture, I have shown him as a rock star but not a grungy one. It's not a dark picture. Farhan is wearing a red and black shirt against a sky blue background.
I didn't let his hair down completely. We tied a part of it, it was an interesting look in terms of styling. We were listening to rock music during the photo shoot to capture the right mood.
Image: Farhan Akhtar
'Farhan has become very comfortable and enjoys his photo shoots'
This is my fourth calendar with him, and he's got better with time. Initially, he was great with a moving camera but was conscious about photographs.He always thought there should be some kind of a story telling even in photographs. Now he has become very comfortable and enjoys his photo shoots.
Image: Dabboo Ratnani, Myrah, Manisha Ratnani and Farhan Akhtar