When a Delhiite looks up at night in the hope of seeing a star-studded sky, all that catches the eye is darkness. “This factor played a big part when I took up photography,” says Cyril Lucido Kuhn.
The 26-year-old freelance photographer, a graduate from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University, took to photographing night skies in North India after spotting the visibility difference between skies of big cities and smaller towns. His photographs shot over the last two years will be displayed as his first solo exhibition – Into The Darkness.
A picture titled Dreamworld, captures The Parvati river flowing towards the hill town of Kasol on a clear night. (
“In 2014, while visiting a friend at a tea estate near Nilgiri (Ooty), I was blown away when I happened to see the sky. I took a couple of pictures and when I saw what I had clicked, I was speechless! I knew that photographing the sky is what I have to do,” says Kuhn. He adds, “There aren’t many people in India, vis a vis abroad, who photograph night skies due to low visibility.”
A fading milky way and stone formations. (
He then took to learning digital photography and travelled to various cities in North India, to shoot the night skies. From stars defining the milky way above hills, or human houses to wheat fields illuminated by full moon, and even meteor showers – he has captured them all.
Photograph titled Wings of the Galaxy - shot by Kuhn shows a house and a partially covered milky way above it, shot in Kheerganga, Himachal Pradesh. (
“It is pollution that prevents people from seeing a clear night sky in big cities,” says Kuhn, sharing about his travels to places such as Rasol, Kheerganga, Kasol, Ladakh and Mussoorie. “I loved travelling to Himachal Pradesh during my college days. So after that, I decided to photograph night skies, I thought of going there again; this time to take pictures.”
Glow in the Dark - the photograph shot in Kanatal, Uttarakhand, shows a light-painted pathway leading to an apple orchard into a house in the distance. (
Born and brought up in Dehradun, the lensman’s breathtaking frames include a poster-perfect photo titled Dreamworld. It captures the river Parvati flowing towards the hilly town of Kasol on a clear night, and might make one wonder about his excessive use of photo editing tools. Kuhn says, “Every photo needs to be edited to a certain amount without manipulation in any way. Some of my images are more edited than others. For instance in the picture titled The Tree of Life (which captures a tree on the Sariska Palace grounds, Rajasthan under a starry sky), I have made the tree look larger than it was. The photograph on display is a frame that I couldn’t achieve when I was there.”
CATCH IT LIVE
WHAT: Into The Darkness, photo exhibition
WHERE: India International Centre, Lodhi Road
WHEN: July 1 to 8
TIMINGS: 11am to 7pm
NEAREST METRO STATION: Jor Bagh on Yellow Line