“The biggest challenge is breaking through the limitations of skill to create something that induces the picture in one’s mind”

Tell us a bit about the beginning of your career as an artist. How did you start? Have you always known this is what you wanted to do?

I have always been inclined to art for as long as I can remember. It is something that I always have gravitated towards. I don’t remember a conscious day as to when I decided I would do an art course but due to my strong inclination towards art from school days I knew I wanted to learn more about this discipline and find a path that would allow me to take this up as a profession. My love for my work is definitely a part of who I am.

Always / Picture Courtesy : Abhigna Bararia

What kind of formal training did you undergo to become a visual artist and what role has it played in your growth?

I am a Visual Artist from Bangalore, India.
I have completed my Advanced Diploma in Art & Design from Srishti School of Art, Design & Technology. Before that I completed my Bachelors in Visual Arts from Chitrakala Parishath.
The previous 4 years of BVA helped me make my skills with illustration & pen very strong as we had more hands on work to do. I learnt sketching, print making, sculpture, mural making, traditional painting and many more hands on skills.
At Srishti, I was trained more on design thinking, ideating, process, research methods, ethnography, UI, typography, etc.
Having explored the most important things, learning new techniques, new ways of looking at things during the 6 years of my education, Art became the best way to express the gratitude I felt for life, nature and all the emotions that exist. But school or not, you continue to learn something everyday & ultimately continue to grow everyday.

What is your workflow pattern right from planning to execution for any assignment?

I’ve spent a lot of time over the years practicing patterns, textures and understanding what my style is. It starts with a lot of scribbles and rough sketches. I make a few rough drafts before i get to my final artwork by building on it step by step.

Transformation / Picture Courtesy : Abhigna Bararia

Your work involves being creative. Where does the inspiration come from?

My inspiration comes from almost anything around me, sometimes within me too.. Travelling, wilderness, nature, people, emotions to name a few more of the things that inspire.
Off late I have also been working on a few personal projects around experiences I’ve had (with a few loved ones) with the disease cancer.
My motivation for me is love for what I do. For me art helps the negative to transform into positive. I am always encouraged to make the viewer feel something when he/she is looking at it.
I have a fondness for symmetrical intricate line work with a lot of detail and a little chaos. I enjoy it not only for aesthetic reasons, but the process of creating such art is meditative to me. It is an ever-evolving theme in my work. My subjects are usually insects, birds, peacocks, flowers, etc.

Artifact of impact / Picture Courtesy : Abhigna Bararia

Typically, what does your day look like?

I have always been a night owl. The evening hours have been the most productive time for me. I do not have an organised work schedule but I usually spend the day reading about artists, designers, travel blogs. I find time to take up online courses on Coursera and Skillshare. One of my last courses on Coursera was on oncology for a a personal project. Once the evening begins i usually begin by doodling and move on to my freelance projects. I make it a point to read poetry & to draw everyday.

Which has been your most memorable project and why? 

Last year, a lot of my artwork revolved around the experiences I have had with the disease cancer. I have done online courses, visited hospitals, spoke to a lot of cancer survivors who have some inspiring stories to share. I did a personal project dedicating artwork for not only those who survived cancer but also for the ones who fought hard, for the families who support and for those who are left behind.
My aim as an artist is to resonate with my audience on a very intimate level. This project had a positive response & it was very motivating to get such response from my target audience and has motivated me for my next project around the same topic.

Hope / Picture Courtesy : Abhigna Bararia

What is the most challenging task you face in your job?

Breaking through the limitations of skill to create something that induces the picture in one’s mind.

Any final words of wisdom for the artists to bring their creative best in their work?

Never stop looking. See what that makes you feel & Draw what you feel. As cliche as it might sound, it always works for me.