The best Language of Expression is Art

Interview with Eminent Author and Artist - Meghana Gupta Arakere

by Subhechcha Ganguly

Lets talk to a personality for whom art and writing goes hand in hand .She is a very talented artist and seeing her artwork one can easily decipher the hardwork she puts in to the art she creates. Let us talk to her about her journey .

Q1) Since when did you recognize your calling as an artist ?

My journey in art has been a roller coaster ride. I started off when i was 7-8 years old and we used to have art as a part of our curriculum. You had to pass art to pass the class and I was bad at art that I always used to get grades like D and E. So my mother decided to put me into art classes. I attended art classes for a few years but never had the interest in it. I used to go only because my mother forced it on me but I would say, that is what made me who I am. When I joined the art classes, I saw kids younger than me painting much better than me and that inspired me to get better. Even then, I was never as good. Then I quit art for around 6 years from class 8-12 as I was in Sri Chaitanya and didn’t have time to put into art. I again picked up my brush in second year of college when I saw a classmate of mine do amazing mandalas. I was jealous of how easily she could make mandalas and that drove me. I learnt how to make mandalas all by myself from scratch. Funny enough, I am someone who doesn’t really believe in learning art from a video. Art comes with trial and error and since then my art has only exponentially grown. I learnt how to write in both English and hindi and also mandalas, acrylics and a lot more. Everyday is a learning process for me. Whenever I get time out of my work schedule, I make sure that I make my hands dirty with some art. I am also trying to learn how to play the uke at the moment. I would safely say, I started art when I was a kid but grew into an artist in my college days.

Q2) Who is your favourite artist and what is the genre of art you are interested in ?

My favourite artist is Raja Ravi Verma. I am just awestruck whenever I see the paintings made by him. I always dream to be able to make a portrait painting even 1/100th as good as he made them. I am an artist who doesn’t have a fixed interest in any genre. The reason being, I believe that a person can get bored with a single type of painting done over and over again. People may contradict me saying that thats how you become proficient but I would reply by saying, become proficient in one or two but that doesn’t mean you don’t know how to do the others. I am proficient in mandalas and landscape acrylics but I have tasted every genre of art varying from singing , dancing, writing, playing an instrument to different forms of painting.

Q3) You also have keen interest in writing .Tell us about your co authoring experience .

My experience of writing was a very sudden one. I once came across a classmate of mine who published his anthology in one of the books and it striked my mind, I can do that too. I wanted to tell my story to the world and tell people what my thoughts about life are. Hence, I started writing. I wrote a 7-8 page writeup based on my experiences in hostel but it never got published because that anthology didn’t get enough authors. I was disheartened but soon enough I was reached out to by a compiler Tuheena and she said we have an open genre anthology available, would you like to participate? I said, Hell yes! I want to and I wrote a different story for that. Post the publishing of that one, I got a chance to write once again on friendship and what it means to me. Both the writeups are very close to my heart and writing helps me express all the feelings I have within me. So far, co authoring has been a wonderful experience. I wish to someday author a complete book of my own which I am working on.

Q4) Mandala art is gaining lots of recognition nowadays. In your profile , we came across a beautiful dot mandala art done by you .How much time did it take for you to prepare it ?

Mandala arts are heavily time taking, need a lot of patience and require fine mathematical skills. Each mandala I have done takes a varying amount of time from a minimum of 2 hours to the maximum I have done is for 3 weeks. The recent dot mandala I have made took me about 3 hours to make. The one which took me around 3 weeks was a mandala on the wall in my bedroom 🙂

Q5) We have also looked forward to your beautiful handmade book marks ? Are you planning on any new designs ?

Ah about this, Yes i do make new designs in bookmarks and also customise nameplates. I have an etsy shop where I sell both the customised nameplates as well as the bookmarks. I can make anything as per a person’s wants and wishes. I opened up the shop very recently and hope it works out in my favour.

Q6) How much time do you solely dedicate to painting.Any advice you want to give to the upcoming generation on keeping their hobbies alive ?

If I were to say, I’d say I give atleast 5-6 hours of my time in a week for art. I am a full time software engineer and I work the night shifts. So, I really have to put in an effort to accomodate all my hobbies into my schedule.

My advice to the upcoming generation would be, when your parents force you to do something as kids, never say no to it before you try it. Try it, if you don’t like it then you can quit it. I would also say something my father always told me- Using your hands is the greatest blessing you can have. Using it to create something beautiful with them is god making you extremely fortunate and lucky. Always use your hands to do some sort of creative thing. It will not only give you happiness and joy but also to those who see it. Also, a skill which involves your hands will never let you down. Even if someday the whole internet and computers are wiped out, you still have a skill which can sustain you!

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