Very Successful & Favorite Bollywood Celebrity Photographer: Dabboo Ratnani Story

Dabboo Ratnani is known for his unique style of Portrait and celebrity photography. Best know for his Annual launch event of Dabboo Ratnani calendar.

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June 26, 2019

February this year, Dabboo Ratnani calendar marks 20 years since its first launch in 1999. He is today the most preferred fashion photographer of top Bollywood celebrities and his work is very much admired by both celebs and his fans across the industry.

Dabboo Ratnani is known for his unique style of Portrait and celebrity photography. Annual launch event of Dabboo Ratnani calendar creates an exciting buzz in Bollywood industry. He lives in Mumbai and is an ace fashion photographer who is a great inspiration to learn from that has changed the definition of photography. 

Born on 24 December 1971 in Mumbai, India. Studied B.COM in MMK College, Mumbai. Dabboo Ratnani Started practicing photography at a young age and worked as an assistant photographer under Sumeet Chopra for three years. In the beginning, his initial photo shoot was for commercial products as part of his first job. Soon after in 1995 he started his career as an independent photographer.

Dabboo Ratnani lives in Mumbai and married to Manisha Ratnani and has a son and two daughters. He has a sibling Vicky Ratnani who is an Indian chef by profession.

In the year 2006, he was among the jury member for Miss India contest. Also, Ratnani is the cover photographer for several popular magazines like Elle, Hi Blitz, OK India, Filmfare, Cosmopolitan and many more. Further, his portfolio also include many reputed brands like Nokia, Acer Computers, Asian Paints, Boro Plus along with top industry celebrities.


Dabboo Ratnani received Dadasaheb Phalke award this year (2019) for his excellence in photography.

Dabboo Ratanani Calendars:

It is said that his very famous celebrity calendar was launched in 1999. And thereafter he launched calendars every year taking in many top celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai, Priyanka Chopra, Esha Deol, Salman Khan, Shahrukh Khan, Arjun Rampal, Preity Zinta, Katrina Kaif and many celebs.

The first calendar shoot was not that much popular being a new concept. Later it was compared with kingfisher calendars and all the Bollywood biggies were invited in 2010 launch event which was a big hit. His trend for collectible celebrity calendars in India made him very popular in the industry. 

When he was asked in an interview how did he came up with this idea, he said, “In December 1999, during the Y2K thing, everybody was talking about it as a new millennium was approaching. I was fascinated about it and thought I should do something related to dates that can happen every year. I came up with the idea of a calendar. Since it was just four years in the business, So I didn’t do any separate photoshoot for the calendar. I took nice pictures of 12 girls I had shot and published them in the form of a calendar. We published around 1000 copies and distributed them to some people and friends from the industry. They really liked the idea; they said, nobody had ever done this before, so it was unique and could be a signature style.”

Daboo Ratnani Photography:

It takes years of hard work, passion and discipline to perfect any skill and photography is no exception. Dabboo Ratnani mantra is “Shoot better and edit less”. “Dependence of post processing of images has increased and became more popular today. A photographer needs to inculcate the attitude wherein the focus should be more on the shoot and its elements such as composition, lighting, backdrop, costumes and concept rather than depending on various picture editing software like photoshop to make their pictures look better”, said by Dabboo Ratnani while addressing ‘what camera loves’ during inaugural day of fashion festival – ‘Laconic 2019’ in Jaipur.

Hugely impressed by Ratnani’s work; rivals often wonder which camera Dabboo Ratnani uses. The secret recipe of photography lies in his mind and not in his camera.

He has always worked alone and decided to teach photography to the aspiring learners, Dabboo Ratnani photography institutes are not only opened in India but has presence in abroad. Occasionally he organizes Dabboo Ratnani photography workshop in Kolkata. 

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  1. I’m following him on Instagram since very long time. I’m highly inspired by his photography skills. But can’t know that much about him. This article help me to understand more. Thanks for sharing this article . I really liked it

  2. Wow! This was really informative. A great piece of writing which covers all the aspects of life and career of Dabboo Ratnani. Apart, from a few small errors in grammar, everything is just on place. You have nicely put on some pictures to give the article a visual appeal. A small advice would be to refrain from using very long sentences. Small sentences are easy to comprehend. Rest, everything is just perfect. You have done a great work.

  3. Fantastic article about an unknown photographer to many. Taking his story and writing an article about his journey inspires many. Keep on inspiring us with your article.

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