Wednesday, 14 December 2011

An interview with the pop-artist Nikita Choudhary

Nikita Choudhary - A 3rd year computer science student, good at programming and a gifted artist who inculcates pop art as her passion, which is a totally different genre, rarely pursued by Indian artists. She chooses to paint portraits of those celebrities' who have always enamoured us and have been an integral part of our life in terms of inspiration, admiration and in some cases, aspiration.

                                                         Einstein by Nikita Choudhary

Here goes a very interesting conversation that I had with her:

  1. Tell us where you’re from and how did you get started in the field of art?          
=> I was born in Bikaner then my family moved to Jodhpur for my education. Funnily, it all started with scribbling in notebook when I used to get bored during lectures. Then one day I saw an art work of Syd Barrett and I told myself “M gonna do it” infact, that was my very first painting as an artist.
Syd Barret - First painting.

  1. How did growing up in Jodhpur affect you as a person and an artist?
=> Honestly, I never liked this place. So, mostly I used to spend time with myself rather than hanging out with friends. It definitely helped me a lot. I got more and more time for myself and I kept practising on different art forms.

  1. What is your family background? Were there any artists or creative sparks in the family?
=> Not at all. No one in my family is anywhere close to art. They all are into entrepreneurship. I am the exceptional one.

  1. How has your work evolved over the time since you begun?
=> I’ll just say “NOW I CAN PAINT”. Yes, when I started, I didn't even know how to hold a paint brush and use colours. Now, I am pretty much confident and now I just play with colours.

Ronaldo on Canvas by Nikita Choudhary
  1. How would you describe your paintings in words?
=> My paintings describe me. I paint what I like, what I feel, my emotions and feelings. You can always make out from my paintings what was I feeling at that time. My paintings are what I am and what I love.

  1. What do you hope the viewer will take away from your paintings?
=> More than the beauty or how it looks, I want them to see the emotions on the face of the person I'm painting and the story behind it. I believe, every face tells a story about their hard work and struggle. I want people to read that.

  1. You have painted a lot of celebrity portraits. What exactly draws you to that specific style instead of say photo-manipulation, or abstract design?
=> It’s all about your own ideas, what you believe in and what makes you happy. I have seen and read about many art forms. For me pop art and abstract art was something very new. People generally don't work much on it because you can always use photo-shop and different picture editing software. But what if you add pop art with abstract art? It becomes all a new thing. Here, even a small idea of yours own make a lot of difference.

  1. What styles would you like to further inculcate in your art?
=> Once I learn more I want to go for allegory. It is what writing is for a writer. The only difference is writer uses words to express and in allegory, figures and portraits are used to express something.

  1. How do you feel about having 2000 subscribers on facebook? Isn’t it an amazing feeling to see so many people liking your work? We would love you to share your happiness here.
=> People generally ask me if am some local celebrity and I just laugh. Initially when I started I didn't know so many people will like my work. It was shocking for me to see so many people commenting on my work and asking for it. Yes, you love it when your work is appreciated. Some even criticize but you can’t stop working. People make fan pages and websites. I find it really very hectic. Artists are very lazy. For me, my own profile works as a fan page or website. People can connect with me directly. It makes me really happy when people personally text me writing about my work.
On Canvas by Nikita Choudhary

  1. How did you start getting offers from music merchandise stores in the country? You told me it all happened in 2 or 3 months.
=> Yes, I started with this in October. Initially, I used to paint on white sheets. Then I moved to canvas. I had friends from music and fashion industry. They started talking about my work and I guess that's how I got in contact with everyone. By the end of November, I started getting offers from different stores to sell my paintings to them. To be very honest, I am not a professional artist. I just paint because I like it. I am not that skilled. So for me, getting into such things at this stage was not a good option. They wanted me to paint according to them and I obviously didn’t want that.

  1. Tell us about your deal with music merchandise in Bangalore Hysteria?
=> I used to sell my paintings on my own. People used to contact me asking for the paintings. In the beginning it was all good but it got very difficult when too many people started asking for the paintings. So I decided to sell all my work to one person/place and people can buy it from there. I then called the owner of Hysteria and made a deal. They’ll be framing the paintings, selling my work at their stores from January. For me it was such a relief. All I have to do now is send all the paintings at one place.

  1. What upcoming projects do you have?
=> I am designing logos for few bands, doing their album artwork. I am also working on few new paintings which are again based on entirely a new concept.

  1. What new concept are you working on?
=> For the new concept, I will be using plaster of paris in my paintings and I will also paint pop art with more colors and of people who are not just into music or movies but other fields too.

  1. You are a Computer Science student doing engineering from Jodhpur Institute of Engineering and Technology. Why did you choose this subject for your graduation?
=> I was good at programming when I was in school. I hated mathematics and all other subjects but computer science was something I loved learning. To me, college didn't make any difference but the subject did because I knew, in the end, I’ll end up handling the family business.

Nikita Choudhary with her painting
15. You progressed so excellently in art. Are you still continuing with the passion you had for programming?

=> Sadly, no. Everything requires practice and dedication. After getting into art, I couldn't give much time to it. I still enjoy programming but I don't get much time to do that. More than programming, I enjoy painting and I spend all my time in doing that.

  1. What are your plans after your graduation? Would you go for a job or would you pursue your art and take it to another level?
=> Definitely I am not going for a job right now. I’ll join an art school after my graduation. Right now, I want to learn more and more about different and rare art forms and make a new art form out of them.

      17. Then what about handling family business? Would you participate in that?

It is up to me. I always had an option related to what I am studying right now but art is no where close to anyone in my family, so I'll be working on my own. It's going to be a whole new start for me.

By Nikita Choudhary

Rapid-fire Questions:

Q. Favourite Place?
=> Venice

Q. Favourite Art Museum?

=> The Louvre museum, Paris.

Q. Favourite Painter? 

=> Nature

Q. Favourite Portrait that you have painted?
=> My first painting, art work of Syd Barrett

Q. Any other hobby that you wish to inculcate?

To know more about her and her paintings, subscribe to her on facebook by following the link given below.
Nikita Choudhary

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