Balancing Love and Lenses

- September 30, 2023
| By : Tahir Bhat |

Nitin and Shanaya Arora have balanced love and profession to master the art of wedding photography

NEW BEGINNINGS: Isa Khan, former economics teacher turned traveler, and wife Mariya Darakshan, captured during their nikah ceremony

In a world where every shutter click tells a story, Nitin Arora Photography (NAP), a photography brand specialising in weddings, fashion, and corporate events, is crafting a narrative that sets it apart from the rest.

Nitin, 33, and Shanaya Arora, 30, have redefined the art of capturing love and emotions of weddings through their lenses.

Soon after graduating from a journalism course in 2009, Nitin found himself in the middle of a global recession that massively hit employment sectors.

He earned from a part-time job at the time and bought a new camera, which introduced him to the world of lens.

Soon after, he did a basic course in photography and launched NAP in 2010.

POWER COUPLE: Nitin Arora and Shanaya Arora have covered over 700 weddings

Headquartered in Gurugram, it has transcended borders, undertaking projects globally. With over 700 weddings covered, their brand has become a recognised name in the industry.

Nitin Arora told Patriot, “We introduced the concept of composing original wedding songs for personalised wedding films to create unique and emotionally resonant experiences for couples.

“This innovation has set us apart in the competitive wedding photography industry, fostering deep connections with our clients and driving significant business growth,” Nitin said.

A Love Story Beyond the Lens

The story of Nitin and Shanaya’s love is as captivating as their photography. They first connected on Facebook, drawn together by their shared love for art. What started as a professional collaboration soon blossomed into love. Their wedding in 2015, featured on NDTV Band Baaja Bride by Sabyasachi, was a testament to their deep bond.

“We initially connected on Facebook in 2012, and our connection was instant,” Shanaya shared. “At the time, I was working as a cabin crew, and I was captivated by his photography style. I approached him with the idea of having him capture me, and that is how our friendship began. As time passed, we didn’t even realise when our friendship blossomed into love,” she told Patriot.

Shanaya says, “For me, Nitin is more than just a photographer; he’s my number one choice because he effortlessly captures both emotions and style.”

One of the most remarkable moments in their relationship was a 21-day bike journey, covering 3300 km from North to South in India, featured on MTV and JIO TV.

“Those 21 days were an incredible adventure where we not only explored new horizons but also discovered more about ourselves and our shared passion for art,” reminisces Nitin.

“This experience brought us even closer, and the memories from that journey remain etched in our hearts forever,” Nitin recalled.

Admiring Each Other’s Strengths

In both personal and professional life, Nitin and Shanaya deeply admire each other’s qualities. Nitin praises Shanaya’s unwavering support, while Shanaya appreciates Nitin’s ability to see the best in her. Their complementary strengths create a harmonious partnership.

“Celebrating the qualities we admire in each other, has created a profound impact and forged both our emotional connection and our professional partnership,” Shanaya said.

“Nitin’s unwavering support and his knack for always seeing the best in me have been pivotal,” she continued.

“He brings out my confidence and encourages me to pursue my dreams, creating a strong foundation for our relationship. It enables us to navigate life’s ups and downs together with resilience.”

VIBRANT MOMENTS: Isa Khan’s Haldi Ceremony

“We’re both driven by a shared desire for success in our professional endeavours,” Shanaya added, “and this common goal strengthens our partnership”.

The two have maintained a balance of roles at home and work.

“The emotional support and the skilful balance of our roles at home and work are qualities we deeply admire in each other. These qualities not only contribute to a harmonious personal life but also to a dynamic and successful partnership in our professional endeavours,” Nitin said.

“Our ability to seamlessly transition between being loving partners at home and a dynamic, success-driven team at work is crucial. This balance enhances our productivity and fosters mutual respect. We’ve honed the art of understanding each other’s strengths and weaknesses, allowing us to complement each other effectively,” he said.

To maintain a healthy work-life balance, Nitin and Shanaya consciously switch their roles. At home, they cherish their personal relationship, and at work, they act as a cohesive team, driven by a shared commitment to success.

“We’ve found success in managing both aspects by consciously switching our roles,” Nitin explained.

“At home, we focus on our personal relationship, cherishing our time as lovers. When at work, we act as a cohesive team, driven by a shared commitment to succeed. Open communication and mutual respect play a key role in maintaining this balance,” Nitin told Patriot.

Shanaya continued, “We’ve celebrated each other’s successes throughout our journey, and achieving these respected titles has not only strengthened our partnership but also added a sense of accomplishment to our relationship. It’s a testament to our mutual commitment to excellence in our chosen field.”

Clear role definitions and mutual respect help them avoid conflicts in their personal and professional lives.

“We have defined our roles in the company clearly,” said Shanaya.

“I respect his zone, and he respects mine. We work as a team but stay focused on our assigned tasks, which helps avoid conflicts.”

Marriage: A harmonious blend of cultures and traditions

Mutual support is at the heart of their journey, both personally and professionally. “Mutual support is our foundation. It drives our personal and professional success,” Nitin said. “We cheer for each other and stay focused on our brand,” he added.

Balancing Celebrity and Wedding Photography

They have a wide range of celebrity shoots to their name including Divya Khosla Kumar, Disha Patani, Kanika Kapoor, Sonam Kapoor Ahuja, and the Royal Family of Jaipur, as well as brands like Ritu Kumar, RBL, Steve Madden, UCB, Coach, Salvatore Ferragamo, Reebok, Adidas, among others.

“We schedule and allocate time for each type of project, ensuring we maintain the quality and personal touch that our clients expect in both our wedding and non-wedding work,” Nitin explained.

“Working with celebrities and brands brings a wealth of experience and exposure to different styles, trends, and creative concepts,” Shanaya added.

“This exposure does influence our approach to wedding photography. We incorporate innovative ideas, unique angles, and storytelling techniques gleaned from our other work into our wedding projects. This infusion of creativity and fresh perspectives helps us continually evolve and offer our clients a unique and exceptional experience in their wedding photography.”

Roles and Strengths

Nitin handles technical aspects, while Shanaya brings creativity and artistry.

“Nitin handles the technical aspects of our photography business, which includes camera equipment, lighting, and post-processing,” said Shanaya, before adding, “He is our technical maestro, ensuring that our images are of the highest quality and technically flawless. His meticulous attention to detail and constant exploration of new techniques keeps us at the cutting edge of photography technology.”

Shanaya, on the other hand, brings her creative flair to the team.

“I am responsible for artistic direction, styling, and conceptualisation,” she said.

“My ability to visualise and execute creative concepts adds an artistic dimension to our work that resonates with our clients. I’m also the voice behind our storytelling and am passionate about capturing the emotions and narratives that make each wedding unique,” she added.

Apart from wedding photography, the couple has individually also been associated with various brands such as Canon, Reebok, UCB, Reliance, and many more.

As mentors and ambassadors for brands like Canon India and Godox India, Nitin Arora shared, “our association [with them] has enriched our photography journey in numerous ways”.

Shanaya added, “It has provided us with access to the latest equipment, networking opportunities, technical expertise, creative inspiration, and validation of our skills. This affiliation allows us to stay updated with industry advancements and share our knowledge with the photography community.”

India’s First Photography Podcast

“Launching ‘WED FM’, India’s first photography podcast, was a remarkable achievement for us,” Nitin Arora said.

“Our motivation behind venturing into podcasting was to establish a direct connection with our audience and provide valuable insights on various aspects of photography.”

Shanaya chimed in, sharing her personal motivation, “I have always wanted to do something where my voice is recognised, and as a former cabin crew, I had worked deeply on my voice. ‘WED FM’ gave me an opportunity to express my words and thoughts, along with Nitin, to help others. Beyond photographers, it aims to assist couples in planning their weddings efficiently.”

Their podcast covers a wide array of topics, as Nitin explained: “We discuss photography techniques, wedding trends, client experiences, gear, business strategies, and creative inspiration. It is a comprehensive platform designed to educate and inspire not only fellow photographers but also couples planning their weddings.”

Through it, they have created a valuable resource for both photography enthusiasts and soon-to-be-wed couples, sharing their expertise and experiences to make the wedding journey smoother and more memorable.

Sharing Knowledge

Nitin’s YouTube channel offers behind-the-scenes footage, gear discussions, expert interviews, and life lessons. Sharing knowledge and helping others grow is his passion and purpose.

Describing his YouTube channel, ‘Its Nitin Arora’, he said, “The channel includes behind-the-scenes footage, gear discussions, expert interviews, and life lessons. It’s not just about photography; it’s about becoming a better human being and photographer. Sharing knowledge and helping others grow is my passion and purpose.

“I have a deep desire to share my knowledge because I believe in the power of knowledge sharing,” affirmed Nitin Arora.

“In my early days, I struggled to find a mentor due to financial constraints, so I made a commitment to share my experiences and knowledge freely when I had the opportunity,” he said.

Strategies for the Brand

NAP has thrived over the years by employing a comprehensive set of strategies aimed at both building and sustaining their brand.

“To achieve this, we maintain a steadfast commitment to consistent quality in all our work, ensuring that excellence is a hallmark of our brand,” Nitin elaborated.

When asked about the experiences and hard work, Shanaya says the efforts are ‘never ending’ to keep up with the competition in the industry. Making a name for your brand might be difficult, but maintaining it long enough to be recognised by big industry players is a tougher game.

Shanaya added, “We also place a strong emphasis on embracing innovation. This proactive approach allows us to stay ahead of industry trends and continually push the boundaries of our art.”

In discussing their personalised service, Nitin explained, “We firmly believe in forging deeper connections with our audience and clients. It’s not just about delivering high-quality work; it’s about crafting a memorable experience for them.”

Shanaya emphasised, “Networking, client testimonials, continuous learning, effective marketing, diversification, adaptability, and teamwork are also integral components of our brand-building and sustainability efforts.”

Looking towards the future, Nitin shared their goals: “Our vision involves global expansion, embracing cutting-edge technology, fostering education within the photography community, offering innovative services, prioritising sustainability, engaging closely with our clients and the broader photography community, and maintaining a couples-centric approach. Upholding brand integrity is paramount in all our endeavours, and through ongoing innovation, we aim to redefine the wedding photography experience.”

 Memorable wedding experiences

“Reflecting on our journey as wedding photographers, we have had the privilege of experiencing countless memorable moments,” shared Nitin.

“Each wedding holds a special place in our hearts as we strive to build lasting friendships with our clients.”

Shanaya continued, “However, one wedding stands out prominently in our memories. It was hosted at Sukhvilas in Chandigarh and presented a unique set of challenges and opportunities. Collaborating with vendors like Devika Narain and Rudra Events was both an honour and a creative challenge.”

“What made this wedding particularly special was the groom, who was initially camera-shy. He sought a distinctive approach to capturing their special day. As a team, we worked seamlessly to create stunning photos and videos that authentically captured the essence of the wedding. This experience serves as a testament to the power of teamwork and creativity in our profession,” she said.