A lot of people (family and friends) that have had their birthdays during these lockdown months have wished this year away. But this man is one of those individuals who has found his love for nature once again, in different aspects of nature, apart from wildlife during this period of isolation – the skies – clouds, stars, moon, storms are a few of them. In between the sunrises and sunsets before the stars shine brighter in the sky, the animal diversity gets some attention. I attempted a timeline of his day, during the lockdown era, as a birthday card for him.
“We have to get the wedding card done. We liked what you did for the logo of the company. So we would want you to do the wedding card.” Aunty said it all in a single breath. I had no idea whether to say yes or no. With a huge project and tight deadline, I wasn’t sure if I could start another one and finish it in a short period. And one couldn’t work on a wedding card without knowing the story behind the bride and groom getting hitched. So I started pushing aunty to spill some of her ideas. With subsequent iterations over a period of few weeks, this is what I ended up making.
Red munia or strawberry finch, as the name suggests, is a striking red sparrow sized bird found in tropical Asia. The males and females are generally a dull brown colour with multiple white spots. The male develops this red breeding plumage and white streaks under the eyes during the monsoon months in the South of India. The pairs build their nests together using blades of grass, feathers, pieces of charcoal etc. In this piece, the male is seen carrying a ruffled feather from the surrounding to build its nest.
I am not the only ‘artist’ in the world who is unsure about my work. Thanks to a very supportive social circle, I have managed to keep myself going when it comes to art. But that was always a hobby. It took me by surprise when I got a call from a corporate to work on creatives for the festive season in different states of India. I wasn’t sure if they had called the right person to begin with. And once that was clarified, I moved onto to worrying about the briefing and if I was ever gonna make art that they would like.
The first creative I was working on was for Kerala, I made my calls to all possible friends I could remember to check on something unique from the state that they relate to. And I sent across my ideas to the client. We did a lot of back and forth for two weeks and finalised the base drawing. It was time to fill in colours.
Then came the call- the client liked the drawings but not the way it was coloured. I wasn’t sure what they meant by that. Alas! the opportunity slipped by.