From V. K. Murthy to Pankaj Kumar, top 8 Bollywood cinematographers who redefined visual storytelling

The unsung heroes behind the camera play an important role in bringing stories to life in the lovely world of Bollywood, where dreams come true and emotions dance across the silver screen. Cinematographers, the camera magicians, can transport audiences to various domains through their visual storytelling abilities. Bollywood has been blessed with amazing artists who have not only caught moments but also remade the very essence of visual storytelling over the years.

This article will take you on a cinematic journey through the works of 8 Bollywood cinematographers who have left a lasting impression on the industry, with each frame standing as evidence of their artistic talent.


1) V. K. Murthy:
V. K. Murthy - Wikidata
 Our voyage begins with the great V. K. Murthy, an expert who painted with light during Indian cinema’s golden era. Murthy’s collaborations with Guru Dutt in timeless classics such as “Pyaasa” and “Kaagaz Ke Phool” demonstrated his ability to combine light and shadow to elicit emotions. His work continues to inspire a new generation of filmmakers.

2) Subrata Mitra:
Subrata Mitra - IMDb
Next, we look at the work of Subrata Mitra, who is widely recognized as the pioneer of realistic cinematography in Bollywood. His innovative cooperation with Satyajit Ray produced films such as “Pather Panchali” and “Aparajito.” Mitra’s utilization of natural light and unique camera techniques established a history that is still recognized today.

3) Ashok Mehta:
Remembering Cinematographer Ashok Mehta | Entertainment
The skilled man behind the lens, Ashok Mehta, created visual poetry in every frame he captured. Mehta’s ability to integrate depth and passion into his cinematography, as shown in films such as “36 Chowringhee Lane” and “Utsav,” provided a dimension of richness to the plots.

4) Santosh Sivan:
Santosh Sivan - IMDb
A modern-day virtuoso, Santosh Sivan’s cinematography perfectly blends tradition and innovation. His collaborations with Mani Ratnam in films such as “Roja” and “Dil Se” demonstrate his ability to create visual marvels that have a significant impact on spectators.

5) Rajiv Menon:
    Rajiv Menon Productions
Rajiv Menon has established a position for himself in the field of cinematography with his vivid and visually arresting shots. From the brilliant landscapes of “Bombay” to the heartfelt frames of “Kandukondain Kandukondain,” Menon’s ability to create a color symphony enriches the storytelling experience.

6) Anil Mehta:
   Anil Mehta - IMDb
Anil Mehta has captured the soul of Bollywood in all its glory with his keen eye for detail. His collaboration with filmmakers like Karan Johar on films like “Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna” and “Kal Ho Naa Ho” proves his ability to bring larger-than-life stories to the big screen.

7) Ravi K. Chandran:
ravi k. chandran (@dop007) / X
Ravi K. Chandran, a true master of visual luxury, has left a permanent imprint on Bollywood. His work in films like “Ghajini” and “My Name is Khan” displays his ability to create visually stunning spectacles that enhance the cinematic experience.

8) Pankaj Kumar:
Man of Many Shades | Entertainment News - The Indian Express
Pankaj Kumar, a cameraman who has reborn truth with beauty, completes our journey. His collaborations with filmmakers such as Anand Gandhi in “Ship of Theseus” and “Tumbbad” demonstrate his ability to bring a sense of authenticity to the screen while maintaining visual appeal.