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June 26, 2006   

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The sexiest Bollywood pictures!

It's not for every photographer that Sushma Reddy will pose topless.

And not every photographer can handle and shoot the Bollywood brigade, comprising all the top stars.

But Vikram Bawa is special.

And to think that he isn't even a trained photographer. "I'm a maths graduate, law student, and worked in a chemical factory for eight years," he says. Photography, for him, was just a hobby then.

"I used to be a landscape photographer. I used to travel five hours a day (from Mumbai to Tarapore, 45 km away, and to Vapi in Gujarat) to get to my factory, and would shoot the scenery. But one day, the factory shut down and I was out of work for months."

Photography came to his rescue and he shot portfolios for friends. "Someone saw my work, recommended me and I got my first assignment," he says.

But he could still not afford state-of-the-art equipment. "For years, I bought second-hand stuff. Cameras that cost Rs 500,000, I got for Rs 40,000. Today, my camera is worth Rs 1.5 million."

Though he started his career as a film photographer, he changed tracks, and is now an advertising photographer. "The money (in film photography) is not good. If a film photographer makes Rs 15,000 or 25,000 a day, ad photographers make Rs 60,000 or Rs 90,000 a day."

Vikram Bawa showed us some of his best pictures. Here, we share them with you, and the photographer himself takes you behind the scenes.

Text: Ronjita Kulkarni | Design: Reuben N V

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