Before I proceed to say anything about art, I must make it known at the very beginning of this monologue, that I am far from being an artist. I just draw and paint, mostly when I run short of words to express how I feel about a particular scenario or a situation that life brings forth. I can, therefore, only tell you about what art means to me, personally.
I can tell you about all the times I took shelter in the welcoming world of inks and colors, when everything else around me became a tad too mundane to bear. I can tell you about the many days and nights, when leaning over my sketchbook for endless hours, with a numb mind and a cold heart, I kept putting that pen on my paper again, and again; kept coloring the corners, drawing the lines and curves.
There are times when I experience a feeling so profound that I become speechless, both in the verbal and the written form. That is the time when the writer in me mocks me in the most cruel manner; for what good is a writer who has no words to pen down, at the very time when they ought to flow relentlessly and naturally from her pen? What good is the writer, who does not wish to part with her deepest emotions, not even through poetry?
That pathetic writer is me.
And there are some equally pathetic times that I go through that make me shut up, and shut down, the world of words altogether.
It feels like it is pointless to utter even a single word of sincere emotion, a passionate plea; or even a trivial sigh of helplessness, arising particularly out of heartfelt grief.
And yet I have to take it all out of me in some way or the other, lest the heart be too heavy to beat.
So I doodle and scribble and paint my way to the other side of the night, where the stars are not too proud to glitter and the moon is not too shy to offer its charming company.
And most times, with music deafening out all the other noises around, I find myself expressing my joys and sorrows through one of my most coveted languages – Art.
This is how it all began.
I started drawing this quill pen when I had resolved to start writing again. (I know, this is irony at its best, because I never wrote a word during the time I was making this.)
Then came this, my first doodle story. I made this to clear the mess in my head; and in the process ended up making a messy doodle. However, I have to admit, this one kept me sane and hooked, even at times when I felt like I needed to scream so loud hoping that the aliens could hear me for once and come to my rescue.
Here’s the third one, and this one does not make me feel too bad about writing less and drawing more, because I did write a poem along with it! It’s called ‘Sleepy Buds and Dreamy Blooms’ and it’s here on my blog too.
Then came this, again, with a poem. I now remember the time when I was making this with a lot of gratitude and positive emotions. This was the first time when I had the courage to make something beautiful out of some of my deep rooted faults – jealousy and hatred. I knew I hated the other woman, even though I had never met her, or even known her for the person she was. I was simply jealous of the fact that someone else was the object of affection, of the same person whom I had given my heart to. This one is called “The Last One For You”. And oh boy, need I say anymore about how bad it felt!
So I just drew it, made some poetry out of pain, and now this is what it looks like –
But it felt like jealousy was way too persistent a disease to let go of me so easily. And it so turned out that the previous drawing was not to be the last one, after all. So, I tried again: and this time I tried to make it colourful too! They say colours are good if you want to feel happy. Well, it did make me happy, once I got to see the finished drawing, with a poem along with it, sitting quietly in one corner of my beloved space – this blog! This one is called “The Truth in Our Stories”
So after getting rid of most of my self-inflicted miseries, by doodling and drawing the hell out of them, I felt much better. Deep down I realized that I was growing into a person who is capable of much more than just jealousy, hatred and fear.
All the previous drawings gave me ample time to reflect on my life, my own actions and my truest motivations to live in this beautiful world. It was while painting my nightmares that I finally realized what my dreams were.
I am a seeker of knowledge, an ardent believer in the collective advancements of humanity and a passionate dreamer. I cannot imagine my life without the beauty of nature, the melody of music and the harmony of universal love and solidarity.
I am, to the best of my knowledge, the most foolish person I have ever met, who is totally comfortable in her foolery; as long as there’s something new to learn, something beautiful to see and something extraordinary to experience.
And hence, I refused to let myself stay inside my shell for much longer. I gradually found the courage to peep out again.
And guess what? The world outside looked as beautiful as it was before, when I had shut it out. Perhaps, this time, because I was looking with the same eyes but with new visions, I found it to be even more fascinating than ever!
My next drawings are the outcomes of all the new things I saw, learned and experienced, after having fought the demons in my soul and emerging victorious, carrying a prized trophy in my hand! No, it wasn’t an intricately carved metal shield, or a glistening sword dripping demon blood. It was something way more fancy than those!
It was a present, my first Rotring pen! Oh, and what a beautiful thing it is!
Look what I made with it!
My first Mandala Magic- a depiction of all the relationships thriving in a connected universe.
My second one – Meditative Mandala – hailing the cosmic forces to unite; in peace, love and harmony.
My third one – In Search of Quintessence
And yes, I felt wonderful after having made each one of them.
I felt good about the fact that I had found a way to express myself, even when words failed me.
Does all of this make me a worse writer? Well, that is something that I still try to figure out sometimes, and I am yet to find a definitive answer.
All that I know for now, and being as sure as I can be, is that all of this definitely makes me a happier person. Each and every drawing of mine has offered me a chance to think before acting, reflect before responding and dream before dying.
And so today I can tell you, with the utmost certainty, about what art means to me.
To me, art is happiness.
And that is all I know about it.
I have also started to make a living by selling some of my artworks.
What I have on offer for now is also a stepping stone for my current project called AWE(Art With Everything).
AWE is an initiative undertaken for two primary reasons-
a) to bring back the love for art and creativity that was predominant in the cultures of the past, by bringing meaningful art closer to the masses; even in the guise of utilitarian goods and products.
b) to enable artists and other creative individuals to contribute to various causes that require monetary assistance. Most starving artists suffer from the conflict brought forth by an unstable financial condition on a personal level, and a deep rooted yearning to help the needy at the time of crisis on a global level.
I personally felt this many a times, and to be honest, it feels horrible! To want to help so desperately and not be able to, is perhaps the worst feeling a human being can ever endure.
Hence, AWE is my personal attempt to build a platform where artists can contribute a part of their earnings directly to the organizations that take care of those in need. There are many, MANY people in the world today, who could really use some help. From kids dying out of hunger, to people dying out of thirst, to the whole planet warming and flooding up like never before… Oh, you name it! In short, our world needs us to care and act, pronto.
With Art With Everything, I hope to make this happen, and I hope to make it big enough for it to become a meaningful enterprise.
AWE, as of now, is a small business, that is 60 percent for-profit, and 40 percent philanthropy. If we do better, we’ll simply switch to fifty percent, for cumulative benefit. Since it’s foundation,in 2015, we’ve made sure that every single sale, no matter in which currency, adheres to our building principles of profit and philanthropy.
For now, I have a few online stores that I have started with the hope of integrating all the artworks on a new website, sometime in the very near future.
If you have read so far, I urge you to wish me luck!
Also, you can visit and shop from my store by clicking on the links below. I do have various platforms working at the moment, but the most preferred ones are-
For those residing outside India, there are many platforms where I have put up my artworks. Redbubble is a popular one, if you are looking for a variety of utilities and goodies.
And thank you for your time and attention. I sincerely appreciate it.