Retro Kolkata : Please Say something about you.
Sakshi : I am currently pursuing my graduation in journalism and apart from that I do photography as a hobby. I hail from the pink city of India and painting is something I can't live without. I am of a jolly nature thus I love to meet and talk with new people and listen to their stories. Learning is something I am always open to and it does not have to be always relevant to my professional life.
Retro Kolkata : When did you first realize that you really loved drawing? Were there any instances that you can recall in particular that made you choose to concentrate on creating art?
Sakshi : I have been drawing, painting, and doing craft work since my childhood, thanks to my mother. Art and craft is something I have been drawn towards since I was a kid. From drawing haphazard lines on wall to actually painting beautiful murals on it, drawing on last pages of notebook to actually buying expensive sheets to paint.. It has been a beautiful journey. But, it was 2018 when I took it bit seriously. I received a watercolour set from my grandma, something I wanted from long time and that's when the inner me wanted to explore that medium.
Retro Kolkata : Has anybody guided you along your career path as an artist and if so who?
Sakshi : What I paint today wouldn't have been possible without my school's art teacher. There were no art classes for us after 8th standard, and I was in 10th when I received that watercolour set. One random day, my school's art teacher, who used to teach us in mid school was in our class as a substitute teacher. I went to her and asked sheepishly, if she could teach me watercolours. It was a yes! The very next day I went to her with all my stuff and the first thing I was told to do was to discard the paint set I was having and buy a better quality one. The little girl in me felt a little disheartened as those paints were something I have been wanting for long. Two days later, i returned with a new set- the better quality one and we began with the basics. She taught me every thing possible with those paints.. basic mixing, light and shadows, controlling the water in water colours etc. Spending time with her in the art room used to be the best part of my day and now I pretty much miss them. Learning simple basics from her made my base strong and over the time I explored with the medium to achieve what I do today.
Retro Kolkata : Tell us about your work? What are you currently working on?
Sakshi : It's been a few months since I have painted something big, something with a lot of details. I was working somewhere as an intern and recently I dropped it because I was missing painting a lot. And now with pleasure I have started a painting, named 'Kashna' which is of an old woman with red flowers and with a sweet smile. Apart from that, some commissioned projects or portraits are like a yo-yo in the background.
Retro Kolkata : What is your favourite medium to work in?
Sakshi : WATERCOLOURS! There's no doubt about that. People often say that watercolour is a tough medium because it is hard to control it's flow, but for me, it's like my best friend, instead, I don't find acrylics easier than aquarelle. I love how versatile they are, ranging from transparent to opaque. They give a beautiful touch to the painting, also, before starting any new project it's fun (sometimes frustrating) to solve the puzzle of which colours to apply to get a particular shade in the painting. This is what I refer to as breaking the colours. Apart from them, colour pencils are my love, though watercolours remain the first.
Retro Kolkata : Who are some artists you admire?
Sakshi : I believe there's something to learn from every artist and their style. But because my eyes crave for detailings, my favourite Indian artists are Bijay Biswal, Uday bhan, Raghunath Sahoo, Nikita Chhabra and for the international ones- Gizzele Delos Santos- Eustaquio, Karen Kluglein, Thierry Duval, Halyna Boholiepova. There are many more, but these are some whom I admire the most.
Retro Kolkata : What subjects do you mostly like to draw and paint about and why?
Sakshi : I started with painting food because of it's colours and different textures, then navigated through 3d and realistic painting of food wrappers like chocolate, chips, cookies. Painting portraits was something I considered as my weak point then and I am still learning them for now, but painting old people, especially women, now I feel that, it's my style. Old people portray a lot of stories through their faces, every wrinkle of them is different, and their smile, It's so beautiful. A painting doesn't start with a sketch or when you lay down your paper, it starts even before- when you search for your reference image.
Retro Kolkata : What goes through your mind while you draw, is there a calm silence, do you listen to music or do you experience doubt, fear or any emotions at all?
Sakshi : I can't do something in a long sitting, be it painting or studying. Thus, I would just pop out of my chair every 20 mins and take a stroll in my home, to gather more inspiration or ideas, to see some close up of textures and colours and how I can use them in my painting. While painting I usually listen to slow-mellow-old-english songs because they are so peaceful and does not even distract me much ( because you never know the lyrics :P ). Sometimes I enjoy the process but most of the time it's self doubt that whether I'll be able to complete it well, what if I spoil the background or what if the colours turned out to be muddy.
Retro Kolkata : Do you have any upcoming shows or exhibitions that you’ll be attending?
Sakshi : Nothing particular as such but I keep a check on the exhibitions being organised in the city and try to attend them.
Retro Kolkata : Describe your dream project.
Sakshi : I don't have some gigantic dream projects for now but I just wanna be so thorough with my art that someday, at some corner of the world there'll be a fellow artist who'll admire me just like I am admiring the artists above. Apart from that, I am looking forward to organise my art exhibition in upcoming months which will portray my art journey starting as a kid to what I am today.