From carpentry to photography, Suryakanth Kanade pursues an array of hobbies to keep himself engaged. A retired BEL employee and a long-time resident of Vidyaranyapura, Suryakanth has been surprising his family with a new hobby every now and then. Today, he might be engrossed in making the door of his cupboard, while tomorrow, he might be engaged in capturing the scenic beauty of Ooty with his camera. Sitting idle is one thing he can’t do.

In his childhood, Suryakanth took a keen interest in carpentry and one of the first things he made was a pen stand. Later, while studying engineering, carpentry was a part of his curriculum. After a hiatus he returned to the hobby, making doors and sections of cupboards at home. “I always had an inclination towards carpentry, and as a child I used to observe and practice. I felt instead of spending money on labour, I could make a few things and use the money saved to buy tools,” he says.

Taken with sewing

Then, he traded in his carpenter’s tools for a needle and thread; he even sewed shirts for his two sons and his father, but after four years, he couldn’t find the time for it. “I consulted books and practiced sewing at home. At BEL we got uniform material, so I used to stitch for myself, but it was very time consuming so I had stopped.” he said. Seeing her husband sewing, Usha Suryakanth couldn’t resist joining in. “I got curious and slowly my interest in sewing developed. Now, I stitch salwaars, saree falls, and a few other things,” she says.

One hobby that has been a constant over the years for Suryakanth is photography. From black and white to colour, his love for the camera has only increased since he began pursuing it. “I used to prepare the required chemicals and develop the pictures at home. I took photos of the 1980 solar eclipse from Hubli, and after retirement, I travel a lot to take pictures of different places such as Kanyakumari and Ooty. I am going to take up wildlife photography in the coming days,” he says. His list of hobbies, like his enthusiasm for learning new things, seems endless. Soon, he plans to make photography his profession.

At present, digital painting has caught Suryakanth’s fancy; he feels it is better than painting on canvas. “Paper and canvas take up a lot of space, and paints have become costlier. Digital painting makes things easier,” says this constant learner.