Friday, October 27, 2017

Inktober week 4

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The final week of Inktober is here and am quite satisfied with the art I have been able to create and pull together over the last 4 weeks. I am more satisfied with the fact that I have become a little more confident than I was with my hand in ink works. I have been in the practice of creating almost everyday (some days it's not posible too) since 2012 though not everything is worth showing. It's been a sort of practice but Inktober definitely gave me a purpose and clarity as to what I need to do for a whole month starting with a theme (as you know I am not following the official prompt though). 

For my earlier 3 Inktober posts, you can click HERE, HERE and HERE.

I have also been trying my hand, extremely gradual process though...started by August last week, at Derwent Intense blocks which I had bought from Dubai when we were in Dubai last summer. I have used Winsor and Newton postcards for that which again I had bought from Dubai some 3 years back. Will be posting it soon after this challenge.

Here's my last 7 days of insect art.

Phyllium Leaf insect, Housefly
Rooster tail cicada, Boll weevil
Water scorpion, Long-horned orb weaver spider


As usual linking it to Eva and Kristin's fabulous Paint Party Friday.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Inktober and New found Artists

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Into the third week and still going...that’s something quite satisfying for me. The first thing I do these days once I settle down in the morning is to do my Inktober piece and then post it in my Instagram (in case you would like to check it out) account, mainly for accountability so that I wouldn't break it. I am still garnering energy and inspiration from the be frank I am not an insect person...some of them freaks me out but I try not to harm any living being though. Any and every life is least from its perspective!

In case you would like to  see my first and second week's the links.

On that note I would like to share a couple of artists' I love watching in Youtube, of course I am aware of only a few. The first artist is Minnie Small and here's her playlist. But let me tell you I have been following for some months or probably a year now I think. Every morning after creating my own inktober piece, sometimes even before, it has become a habit to watch Minnie's inktober video. In one of her recent videos she introduced a few artists of which I found two others whose video works really interested me: WeroNoYume and Furrylittlepeach both who post Inktober pieces not regularly though as Minnie but all the same really good. WeroNoYume has more videos than the latter now. One other artist from Minnie's list who isn't doing Inktober but whose videos I liked is LittleCoffeeFox. Do check them out. I always love to see the varied mediums and varied techniques of the multi-diverse artists. It's so inspiring and interesting.

So with that here's my this week's inktober works.


Jewel bug, Monarch catterpillar
Giant Shield bug nymph, Amazonian Leaf-footed bug
Lacebug, Scorpionfly



Linking it to Eva and Kristin's Paint Party Friday.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Inktober and Intentions

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I started Inktober on 1st, as is supposed to be, and so far I am able to keep up the momentum though on two occasions I had to summon myself to do it. If I hesitate in the beginning itself, I lag in what I do but if I like the topic, the artist or if it's something that would sound like a challenge to me then I usually complete it. So mostly I don't take up such 'events' unless and until it's something irresistible.  I came to know about Inktober in 2015 but didn't take part the last two years. This year I felt it's unavoidable. This is of course a challenge as is to many simply coz you need to draw/sketch every single day for the whole month. It's good for honing your skill, a kind of exercise - meditation, and then obviously by the end of the month you would have a good number of works or at least a good number of what you have practiced. It's a win-win situation. In case you would like to see and read what my take is and what I had done the first week, you could click  HERE.

Since I am doing Insects...I am actually observing them a lot either in person and/or in photographs...reading on some of them, getting to know some facts and wondering how insignificant we think they are. Particularly with all the incidents and violence happening around, man against man/nature/and everything else, I am very often reminded of a saying; something like, everyone can not do great things but everyone can do small things in a great way. We don't usually try to remember that. I have always seen that people take softness for weakness. But they fail to realize that it takes courage to be delicate in a world this cruel where emotions/feelings/thoughts are crushed mercilessly without even a second thought. Being rude/harsh/cruel is easy. It takes effort to be delicate/considerate; it has to be done with mindful intention. 

"What do you think about it?"

The images are not in chronological order. I placed  it in a way that I felt good to look at.


I couldn't accommodate this stinkbug in the box.

"To those who are participating and even otherwise who try to practice daily, are you able to keep up the momentum? What challenges do you face?"

Friday, October 6, 2017

Inktober2017 - Tiny! But Me.

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"31 Days 31 Drawings.
Every October artists all over the world take on the Inktober drawing challenge and do one ink drawing a day the entire month. Inktober was created by artist Jake Parker as a challenge to improve inking skills and develop positive drawing habits."

This is what Inktober states.

I am attempting Inktober for the very first time. I just hope that I can keep up the momentum and complete all 31.

official Inktober 2017 prompts

Moving away from the official Inktober prompt, I decided to do insects. Tiny lives which aren’t worth living as we humans consider it. In the current times when people don’t value the lives of other people, how can we even think of such tiny lives! I think it all starts from home...when parents teach the value of life even of the tiniest of beings. Everything is valuable to our home – the Earth...Mother Nature. Not one should be overpowered or over shadowed by the other. As our favourite writer in Malayalam, Vaikom Muhammed Basheer, says “Bhoomiyude avakasigal” (Heirs of the Earth). 

dragonfly, colorado potato beetle
honey bee, lantern fly
wasp, praying mantis

So who else is doing Inktober? 

Monday, October 2, 2017

When Angels Came to Earth-Meet An Artist - Hojat Amani (Part 2)

This is the second part of the amazing Iranian artist, Hojat Amani's interview. To read the first part click HERE.

Deepa Gopal (DG): From what I understand, you have been a witness to and have experienced the brunt of war. But you consciously chose to move away from the harsh realities and present positive perspectives and beautiful portrayals. Why do you think you chose that?

Hojat Amani (HA): Yes I experienced terrible war between our country and neighbours for 8 years and I am touched by it and I’m carrying its effect still. As a teenager I was always thinking about it.

At the moment we live in the Middle East that is center of war and I see them from TV. At least I don’t want my work to add to people’s suffering and I don’t want to mock my fellow countrymen and women to help me sell more art. I prefer to depict beautiful images to share with young people throughout the world. My intention is to provide relief, similar to a plant or tree, which transforms the glaring light from the sun and dirty air from the sky into beautiful light and fresh air. Through this process, I will be the one who devours sorrow and attempts to communicate hope and joy to my audience.


DG: How easy or difficult is it to exhibit your art in your country?

HA: Frankly I have many problems in my place for show and exhibition. I haven’t had any show for Angels in Iran because some of them have no scarf (Hijab). 3 years ago I had a show but was attacked and made to close.

DG: Do you think art needs to be didactic? What is your idea of making art? What is the purpose of creating art according to you (particularly when you mention cathartic purification)?

HA: In my view, art is an internal and subjective matter and teaching Art should be limited to teaching art techniques. In art we need more guidance than teaching and the process resembles a gardener that attends to each flower based on its properties. 


DG: Are you a spiritual person? If so, what is spirituality to you?

HA: I am a spiritual person and I believe each person has a spiritual side that is in conversation with him/her.
When I was teenager, I often thought about finding an angel. I tried to catch, trap, observe, imagine, appropriate and document it. My mind was occupied with this matter and I wanted to know how it physically looked.  I referred to holy texts and tried to imagine it. From Islamic books, I found incredible images of angels. In one book, for example, Gabriel, one angel who is very close to the Lord when he met the Prophet, had six hundred feathers that filled the sky. It’s a very huge and dramatic image of an angel! I also became acquainted with other types of angels from folk stories and legends. 


DG: You mentioned about visiting artists’ to learn new techniques and also your visit to London...Do you think traveling is also important to nurture your talent? How far has it helped you in your process?

HA: Travelling is an important part of living, both internal and external travelling is important for discovery of self and the other.  

DG: Which is your upcoming project? Can you share what it is about? What can your fans like us expect?

HA: I have an unfinished art coming up, but I would rather not talk about it now. Let be a surprise.


DG: What would be your best piece of advice to the upcoming artists and all the artists in general?

HA: My recommendation to young artists is to think personally, and the more personally they think, it has a more universal meaning and implications. 

DG: Have you exhibited in India? How was your experience?

HA: Yes I had. Unfortunately I couldn’t be there for opening ceremony, but I saw its good reflection in social media as well as the guardian newspaper and some magazines. Also Indian people like my works and bought some of them. Frankly I have to say the gallery hadn’t professional behaviour though. 

DG: Your Angel series stirs up the public and it they in turn influence your art. What is your opinion about Public art? Do you think there should be more art that interacts with the public? If so, how do you think that art, space and the community should interact and merge?

HA: I believe artists have to pay attention to the needs of the Community in the present time as well as the future. For example when a society and people are sad artists have to make happy art for them.


DG: Where can my readers reach you? Your website address, facebook, twitter etc. that you would like to share.

HA: Instagram - Hojat_Amani 

This is an email interview that has been edited for the blog post.