Your Eyes Are Open but Are You Really Seeing - Nirali Shah

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1.Tell us more about your background and journey.

"Creativity takes courage." Henri Matisse truly quoted this right, as this summarises my entire journey as an artist. 

I am an Accounts and Finance Graduate by degree, but a passionate creator from heart. Having pursued a Postgraduate degree in Design and Innovation brought a huge shift in my thought processes, and now - I aspire to inspire and get inspired by everyone around me. 

2. When did you decide you wanted to be a Painter?

During my final year of college, there was a phase where I felt that nothing made me happy. Constantly working with numbers, studying law books, and evaluating income tax statements made me dizzy. 

But thankfully, a new door opened up. I gazed at the watercolor paintings that I had created during my 7th grade and felt a rush of nostalgia. Impulsively, I picked up my paint brushes, set up my palette and started painting. 

Nothing could replace the dopamine rush that I experienced at that time. I realised how happy art made me feel and decided that “This is it!”.

I took a gap year post college, where I pursued my foundation in Art & Design from Maisha Studio, Chennai where I was challenged to expand my horizons. By being a part of two fine art exhibitions, I realised my true potential as an artist.

3. Is it a financially stable career?

To be honest, it is not that easy - especially in India. Our generations have been raised in a way where more importance has been given to other career paths in comparison to art. However, things are slowly changing and more art related awareness is taking place. 

In my opinion - the initial years are going to be difficult. But the minute you discover your niche and work strategically for it, multiple paths will open up which will help you gain enough financial independence. 

4. Who is your favourite Painter and why?

Salvador DalĂ­ will always be on the top of my list. I love imagining about concepts that cannot practically exist and Dali is someone whose art is surreal. His work revolves around exploring subconscious imagery. Understanding their hidden meanings always fascinate me. 

5. Where do you get inspired from to create art?

"Your eyes are open but are you really seeing?" is a thought process that I undergo each day. Just like every other artist, I get inspired from each and everything around me - be it a word that someone said/ a sound that nature played/ a gesture that someone made/ etc. 

The key to my creativity is by becoming more aware of my surroundings each day than I was the day before. 

6.What kind of book do you prefer to read?

Being someone who’s extremely impatient, I only like reading a particular set of books.

"The power of your subconscious mind" by Joseph Murphy really helped me get through some rough patches. My most read books belong to the nonfiction and self-help category. 

7. What piece of advice would you like to give to the future aspirants?

Everything has been figured out, except how to live. Are you ready to figure that out and just do whatever the hell makes you happy?

- Nirali Shah

- Interviewed By: Pallavi Surana

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