“Creativity is easy, you will never run out of ideas. But finding that consistency to keep doing something and finish it without losing interest is hard”

Lobbyboy / Picture Courtesy : Joanna Davala

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?

Starting off something new is always scary. I remember being really nervous in the beginning while talking to clients or anyone that was interested in my art. There are no rules passed on to you so figuring things out was fun and challenging. Luckily I had some great friends and experienced illustrators who guided me. Sure I made many mistakes, but it helped me in the long run.

No, I always knew I liked drawing but it was only towards the end of school that I was sure I didn’t want to take up a mainstream career. Also, I really disliked studying.

Picture Courtesy : Joanna Davala

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

Studying at Chitrakala Parishath for four years definitely molded me. For the first week at this college, we were made to draw the same pot everyday. This at the time (being an excited student in an ART college waiting for big out of the box lessons) was very frustrating but as a freelancer when you’re working on a project, its not going to be approved on your first try for sure and it shouldn’t let you down. So more than techniques and fancy lessons, I learnt how to be patient and try again at college.

Spaceplants / Picture Courtesy : Joanna Davala

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

I always start off with getting to know everything to client likes – colours, ideas, design preferences, etc.
I send them rough sketches or a story board and get all the changes sorted out before starting the final version if I’m hand painting it. The project is slightly more flexible with changes if it’s digitally made because of the undo button!

Picture Courtesy : Joanna Davala

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

This depends on what I’m working on. If its personal work, I usually draw what I like or feel at the time and take inspiration from my surroundings. Also, I love plants and animals so that might show a lot, too. This doesn’t always move over well if it’s a commercial project. I usually make what the client desires and it will inevitably have your style.

Gameboy / Picture Courtesy : Joanna Davala

Typically, what does your day look like?

I think it’s the usual, start late and work late kind of day. I write down everything I have to do for that month& plan accordingly. Sometimes I’m free all day and sometimes I work 7 days a week. That’s the only con of working for yourself, you don’t get weekends off.

Picture Courtesy : Joanna Davala

Which has been your most challenging/memorable project and why? 

My most memorable project was with Little Fox Films, making the Decathlon stop motion video. This was our first time shooting out of the studio. We were always used to shooting in a controlled environment but it was so good to step out and try something new.

Picture Courtesy : Joanna Davala

You work with a lot of big clients. What is the most challenging task you face when working with big brands?

I don’t really find a difference while working with a big brand to a small one. We go through the same procedures with both. Also, not every brand works the same way. I initially thought there was better service at smaller brands but it really depends on the company’s policies, small or big. Although, the common problem in most of the brands is getting back to us on time. We work on a tight schedule and sometimes that isn’t always respected.

Watercolour small plants / Picture Courtesy : Joanna Davala

What skills or what kind of potential should be there in artists to collaborate with such big brands?

I think time management is really important. Delivering on time is priority so if you’re committed enough to follow through and keep the company’s interest before yours, it will work out fine. As artists/designer/illustrators, you have to remember that if you’re working in a company, you have to satisfy the client like in any other job.

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

Creativity is easy, you will never run out of ideas. I find that consistency to keep doing something and finish it without losing interest is hard. So, keep at it and don’t give up!

To read more about Little Fox Films, click here