Self-Made Envelopes To Self-Made Films: Young Photographer Wins National Science Film Festival Award

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Pune, 30th August 2022: Sagar is from the small village of Sahar in Uttar Pradesh’s Auraiya district. His family of eight consists of his parents, three sisters, and three brothers, with him being the youngest. On a handcart, his father used to sell seasonal fruits and vegetables. His earnings were barely enough to support a family of eight. Sagar’s father died when Sagar was merely five years old. Even though their house was in disarray, his mother sent all of the children to school.

Following his father’s death, his eldest brother and sister assumed full responsibility. Two of his siblings moved to Pune in search of better job opportunities.

Sagar was very versatile. At his house, he used to sell envelopes made from old newspapers. Sagar read the newspaper while making the envelopes. Sagar finished his 12th grade in his village and moved to Pune with his family in 2015. He was accepted into the BA Political course at Kanpur University for distance learning. Sagar had no idea what his future held. He enrolled in a dance academy and began learning to dance. He was hired as a dance instructor at the same academy a few months later.

When Sagar, 24, received his first phone, he discovered his passion for photography, a place that encouraged him to be his most creative and best self. Sagar comes from a difficult background, but he did not let his limitations prevent him from pursuing his dream and learning the art.

Sagar’s life completely shifted when his mother gifted him a smartphone in 2018. He started clicking pictures on his phone. Soon, people around him began to notice and appreciate his skills with the camera. When his physics teacher told him about a fantastic opportunity at a Short Film Festival, Sagar did not want to lose the opportunity. The young amateur made his first short film on his mobile. This film was nominated at the National Science Film Festival in 2019, inspiring him to buy a camera. However, Sagar did not know how to operate the digital tool. He asked about photography and videography courses but knew his family could not afford the high fee.

Later, the young photographer learned about Lighthouse ( from his friend. He successfully completed a photography course following a foundational course from Lighthouse. He enrolled in Junoon EDP and completed five days of business development training by the Youth Aid Foundation. He is now being mentored by Vandana, Filmmaker and Social Impact Communications Specialist, and Mehul Chimthankar (Founder- StorySixty_creating visual assets The two mentors guide Sagar in areas like the role of photographer and videographer, use of technology in the field, and help him assess and work towards his short- and long-term goals. They also give him tasks like creating new short films to understand his level of knowledge, understanding, and skills.

Sagar has been practising and perfecting his photography skills for three years and is approached with multiple projects as a freelancer. The young photographer introduced Sagar Photography Pune, his company, which has opened various gates to varied opportunities. Sagar received the National Science Film Festival Award in 2020 after being nominated for it three times. Currently, Sagar’s new film is playing at the National Science Film Festival at Bhopal.

The young creator remains approachable and humble, guiding the youth at the Lighthouse Communities Foundation, who see him as an inspiration and are on a similar path. Sagar does not merely educate them about the skills of a photographer but also teaches them the importance of mental strength required for the journey towards being a successful photographer and creator. He wishes to create a domino effect of change and opportunity through education for the youth.