In a world full of fashionistas with easy access to trends and styles, Abhimanyu Singh Rathore truly believes that a lot of studying goes behind the art of fashion styling, and how style says so much about the personality of a person. Abhimanyu is here to give us a peak into the world of fashion, one click at a time. The proud owner of Ishtailista, a blog that brings together street style and Indian kitsch, Abhimanyu has a lot to say about fashion, blogging, and why he doesn’t want to known as a blogger. Excerpts:
Tell us a little about yourself.
I am a fashion photographer who loves capturing street styles. I shoot on the streets of India, and freelance with a lot of international publications where my work is featured. This is my 5th year at Jaipur Literature Festival, I’m here on an assignment for a bunch of clients :)
What are we going to see you capture here?
I’m all about colors and quirks. I love people who dare to express with their clothes. You’ll see a lot of quirky styles in my work. Plus it gives you an idea of the person’s personality, and that I think is extremely exciting. You meet people without actually talking to them, you know what I mean?
What made you explore this field? Was this always the plan since your school/college days?
No, I was preparing for IIT. I couldn’t do it, even after qualifying for AIEEE. I was too creative for that, and I wanted to work with visuals. My folks were supportive, and it’s because of them that I got the confidence to do this. They knew I loved browsing through magazines, and they bought them for me whenever they could :)
What do you have to say about the street style in India?
I don’t judge people based on their fashion sense, everyone has a personality of their own and there is no right or wrong. I am passionate about style, not fashion. Street style in India is a mixed bag of styles, colors and fabrics. I love it, there’s so much to see and explore! But I do feel the people here are not that open to experimenting with their looks.
A piece of fashion advice you’d like to share.
Fashion is fun, explore it.
What inspires you?
What is your take on the fashion blogging industry?
It’s good that it’s growing, e-commerce websites have now made it easier for so many international styles and brands to be available. But I wish people would put in some effort into blogging. It’s not about wearing brands and posing to look pretty, a lot of information can be shared through those posts! I loved the time when blogging was about expressing your opinion rather than showing off your money. The “outfit of the day #ootd” culture is ruining the visual world of Instagram, buying followers and likes is insane. It all lacks quality, moreover it lacks a voice.
Aren’t you a fashion blogger too in a way?
There was a time when I enjoyed being called a blogger. It was a webspace for achievers, from Mr. Bachchan to strong voices in literature, every one had a blog. There was a time when people used to wait for regular columns in the newspaper but now they could go to the columnist’s blog & can read the unfiltered opinions. As far as fashion blogging is concerned, there were some really good ones in the beginning in India. But now I want to be known as an artist, a photographer.
One project you’d love to work on?
I want to curate those behind the scenes moments in the black and white shoots of the 40s and 50s from Hollywood and Bollywood. There’s a sense of secrecy in those pictures that makes me want to find out more.
Ok last one, what do my clothes say about me? :D
Since the day I first saw you here in 2016, you’ve been that Bohemian soul who wants to write & travel (nope, not just another blogger)
Hahahha, you know why I had a baller time talking to this happy ray of sunshine <3