Category Archives: Effortless friendships

My friend – Meghna Vakada

Meghna Vakada. Entrepreneur. Restaurateur. Music programmer. And most importantly my voice of reason.

She epitomizes ‘good things come in small packages‘. And boy does she pack a punch. We met many years ago while sitting outside our kids classrooms for orientation when they were in kindergarten together. Since then we have met, talked, shared chai often and done many school pick ups and drops. Somewhere along the way she became so much more than a friend. Calling her ‘my bff’ or ‘like a sister’ would be cliched. And neither of us do cliches! So I am just going to say – what we share is a class apart 🙂

My journey of the last few years can not really be told with any credibility without Meghna being a huge part of it. Her very methodical and logical reasoning has often given me focus and direction with not just business matters related to ArtByAarohi but also to personal conundrums.
My first exhibition of The Poonchh Collection happened at her restaurant. My sounding board for every idea, creative or otherwise happens with her. She is my harshest critic and absolutely generous with her love and respect.
So without much ado let me introduce you to Meghna!

What did you study at college?

I did my bachelors degree in Biotechnology followed by Computer Science.

Bacchus in full swing

How did you get into music curation?

Fate & timing is what I would say …
After my 4year corporate stint as a software analyst at Motorola I took a break when I had my first baby.
It was at this time that I got interested in my husbands line of work. That was my 1st step into the world of restaurants. The more I learnt about the inner  workings of the business the more I got drawn to it. By now we were blessed with our second child. At this time I took a conscious decision to quit work and stay home to be a hands on mom.
Once both the kids were a little older I had sometime on hand but not enough to get back to a full time gig.
That’s when I started actively helping my husband Sridhar Vakada (a hotelier and a restaurateur) in his new project F&B. F&B had a this little bar space in it called BACCHUS. Sridhar is in many ways my mentor and partner in crime  🙂
The idea behind the concept of the space Bacchus was a small warm space that invited like minded people. An invitation with open arms and an open mind where there was no discrimination or bias in any form or shape. A place where people connected with each other based on their mutual appreciation of a particular kind of music, performance art showcase or a stand up comedy gig over some drinks and good laughter.
The most heartwarming thing that I have personally heard and heard often at that from guests was – ” …you can walk into Bacchus any day alone but you never once felt alone after you came in” 🙂
Soon I was curating events along with some of the loveliest people in the scene.
Krunk (Sohail Arora) & me curated BLIVE!  A event series where I had the privilege of hosting some of the most awesome gigs with genuine artists in the circuit from across the globe. Artists who once came into our space became a part of the family and helped push the scene further… It was like we were all in it together !!
– Comedian Sandeep Rao and Sanjay Mantaklata started the 1st ever regular and dedicated comedy show in the city with us called SNAP NIGHT. 9yrs ago we were showcasing artists and comedian who are now big names in the circuit.
Brinda Jacob Janvir (Studio of movement arts & therapy) and I collaborated using the space of the venue in various ways having complete creative freedom just to explore how far an idea can be seen through and this resulted in some very interesting performance art pieces.
– And last but not the least we started the legendary Wednesday DNB nights with Vachan Chinnappa .
Even today when I meet people we sigh over what crazy nights we had pulled off back in the day. Nights we started with only a handful people on the floor to nights when we had to shut the gate as the place could not take in anymore people !!! 🙂 The biggest takeaway from the BACCHUS experience was the camaraderie. We made this amazing connection and we were all in it together -be it the guest, the staff or even me. Everyone wanted the space to genuinely do well and that is really something rare ! 🙂
That’s how I got into the world of alternative music and events 🙂

Quiet evenings as well at Bacchus

What was it like to shift from music to restaurants?

It was a huge mental shift for sure. I had to get over the unfortunate heartbreaking closure of Bacchus and then to get back to a whole new environment of running a restaurant. BARLEY & GRAPES CAFE actually came as a blessing in disguise and  with its own challenges.
It was here that I truly got my hands dirty so to speak. I learnt the end to end of the business from supply chain, vendors to the end consumer and that was an extremely gratifying experience! That followed our new venture which a just a few months old venture ANDHRA KAFE.  I discovered I LOVE doing what I do now just as much. I guess because I constantly feel I am a work in progress every day. Learning something new & trying out something different is what keeps me going … And makes me tick And I absolutely LOVE IT  !!!

Barley and Grapes

Barley and Grapes

Would you call your self an entrepreneur or a restaurateur

Let’s just say I would like to believe I think like an entrepreneur but am a Restaurateur at heart  !! 🙂

What does it take to run a restaurant?
Passion. A lot of it … 🙂 and patience. It’s a very human oriented business. I would say the key is to be a people person not only for your guest but more so with your team. You have to be able to lead by example and empower, harness and grow a persons ability to run a restaurant successfully.

What is work life balance to you?
For me I guess it is organic transitions – life and work must not be in opposite side of ring. Its an intricate weave that makes life work for an individual. So I guess it’s living each moment being aware, to get inspirations from day to day life, to never loose curiosity and to constantly keep learning a lesson from what work or life throws at you – that empowers you to create a work life balance. You have to be innovate constantly, ready to solve a roadblock and not get bogged down trying to balance a particular situation. I guess once you have that mindset balance comes naturally as a byproduct 🙂

Andhra Kafe

Could you draw parallels between business and life as you see it?

Like I mentioned before, for me I guess work, life and business all in totality make me well …Me!
To live life figuring out what values you grew up with and what you inculcate over a period of time from your own journey. To making mistakes and being brutally honest about those, to take total ownership of them so that you can move ahead. That is learning a valuable life lesson.
And most of all living with integrity, an abundance of empathy and patience. An effort to try to truly understand people, to not being judgmental and accept shortcomings. But to  never ever accept cutting corners. To strive to be the best version of you for you. These are some of the fundamental parallels I draw between business and life.

Which begs the questions -Favorite drink, Book and Movie?

Beer, Bridges of Madison County and Schindler’s list

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

My friend – Shibu Arakkal

Shibu Arakkal. Photographic Artist. Tells it like it is. Without mincing ANY words!
I met Shibu at a Group Exhibition in October 2013. My work was a late entrant into the mix. But that’s another story.

Shibu’s first words to me were ‘so you are the one who has painted this work… hmm‘ And then we made polite conversation and exchanged pleasantries. After about an hour of mingling around at the art opening Shibu called me over and asked -“How do you feel about bartering?” And I was like “Sure. What do you want to barter?” His answer- “Your painted chair for one of my prints.” Of course I said “YES” 🙂

‘Lorenzo il Magnifico Gold Prize for Digital Art’ – Florence Biennale 2013

The ‘Bartered’ Chair

But it was more than getting a print from the award winning Florence Biennale artist. It showed me the person he is. This was the honest best compliment I could have got for my work. An award winning artist wanted to barter with me. There was no monetary value attached to his barter. It was a one on one – honest appreciation. And I thank Shibu for it. That was the start of an effortless friendship.

The next in the series of effortless friendships is with the one and only Shibu Arakkal. We meet rarely. As he says “You are always too busy!!” Though I did make the time to meet him to discuss a project. More on that in the weeks to come but till then I leave you with a glimpse into what I think makes Shibu an artist who feels …

What did you study in college?

Economics, Political Science & Sociology. So glad someone finally asked me this question.

What was your childhood like?

My happiest memories of my childhood were the years I grew up with my grandparents, being mostly outdoors when not in school, playing different sports, climbing trees, inadvertently learning to use tools by making things I could play with, fiddling around with my bicycle and doing lots of things parents today would consider to be dangerous.

My move to live with my parents later on involved a lot of escape from and into serious phases of loneliness and very seriously battling that through my teenage years.

Who influences you the most?

My earliest and most profound influence and I realized this much later in life, was my maternal grandfather who was a metallurgist in HAL. Though he passed away when I was in my early teenage years, I think I learnt my early lessons in creative out-of-the-box thinking from him, apart from many other things that made him the extraordinary man he was. After his death, he became my conscience keeper and a silent guide. I begin every month by visiting his grave and talking to him.

What are your plans for your daughter?

I don’t believe that I have the right to make plans for my daughter as she must follow her own purpose and destiny. To answer this question from a conventional stand point, I wish for her to be most of all, her own self because her real self is extraordinary by any standards. I only and diligently so, strive to give her a solid foundation made up of values such as honesty, responsibility, hard work and conscientiousness, amongst a few other things.

Do you see any influence from your father – Yusuf Arakkal ?

I certainly do. For a man who was all consumed by his work, his art, the time that he took to be a father to me, he taught me many things. I am known to be a perfectionist to a fault, though it’s strange but things like that and the sanctity towards one’s work are things I learnt from both my dad and my grandad.

How tough is it to make a name in photography?

Speaking of photography as an art form, even with its rich albeit brief history in the context of art, it is never the less, today’s artistic medium. Even though photographically, we live in a world of digital, analogue and every kind of cross pollinated possibilities, the recognition for and the reality of creating work that is truly unique is very hard to come by. To do that and to compete with photographic artists from the western world who are supported technically, in terms of infrastructure, not to mention monetarily and are recognized, is a challenge that one has to have a stomach for.

What is artistic or fine art photography?

That’s like asking what is artistic or fine art painting. We can’t assume that just because the medium is painting it has to necessarily be artistic or fall into the fine art genre.

I choose to define any art, regardless of medium, as two equal halves of an unique artistic expression and a high caliber of technical skill. This definition, I believe, is more critical with photographic art as the acquired-over-time technical skill graph is always on a more steeper climb due to technological innovations. And so the ability to articulate one’s artistic expression equally is ever demanding and ever evolving.

What advice would you give to upcoming artists?

I think that practicing art is like having children. If you don’t do it for the right reasons, the amount of struggle and rejection will in all probability either break you or worse, make you compromise. Even with instances to the contrary, the practice of art isn’t sustainable at the highest levels, if it isn’t supported by a unique viewpoint, skill and integrity. It is true at least for artists who create for time and not for markets or people.

What advice would you give to upcoming photographers?

  1. Although photography is as technical a medium as any, one would be wise to not forget that it is ultimately a creative medium.
  2. Just as everyone with a fountain pen can’t become a Shakespeare, everyone with an expensive camera won’t become a photographer.
  3. If you cannot or are too lazy to achieve what can be achieved through photography and rely on post-production for it, you will in all probability lose ground in terms of the price you command or be eventually surpassed by someone younger and better.
First place | 'Ventipertrenta 2011' - International Jury, International festival of digital art | Italy

First place | ‘Ventipertrenta 2011’ – International Jury, International festival of digital art | Italy

What is your quiet ‘go to’ place?

It is primarily my balcony but my quiet place is my own head when I’m traveling or riding motorcycles.

What beverage makes you feel comfortable?

GTL (Gin, Tonic & lime)

What movie touches you?

Lawrence of Arabia

With hindsight what do you think you would do differently?

I would firstly go full throttle in my twenties and early thirties but most importantly, I would follow every gut instinct I have and not be so analytical as I have been.

Your one favorite piece?

I truly don’t have one.

What do you think of ‘completion’?

I tend to think the Italian way about this. It will take as long as it takes and it is done when it is done.

What do you think of artist residencies?

I absolutely love the idea of artist residencies and I have done a few over the past four or five years years in different countries.

The idea of a certain sense of seclusion to have the luxury of being able to think about life and everything that is important to an artist and carry that train of thought through to your work, without being interrupted by responsibilities and such, is as close to an artistic utopia as on can find in this world.

What is art?

I am philosophical about art. Art to me is interpreting and articulating the secrets and the language of the universe into physical and in this day, virtual art-forms. Hence, our understanding of reality, specially in art, is greatly subjective. It is possibly why life imitates art.

What is design?

To me, design is creating an efficient aesthetic that is born out of function. And not the other way around.

What are the basics of photography?

What I have learnt of photography is the ability to get into a meditative state of mind and respond to your chosen subject, which also happens instinctually. But that happens when you hone and perfect your technical craft for years, where it enables you to use light, space and form to piece together a photographic puzzle created out of YOUR subjective and artistic soul.

What are the first steps to take?

Study, study, study!

Would you lend your name to limited edition or mass produced?

If done right, surely.

What do you think of the art scene in India and abroad?

In India, the artists who have made a name for themselves in the last ten or fifteen years seem to dissociate and ignore the foundation that was laid by a whole lot of landmark artists, for what is today called Indian art. I find that disrespectful to what is inherently your own artistic roots. A tree without roots isn’t alive.

This I believe happened because our “new age artists” thought that to be truly international they need to adopt international roots and hence, the rampant dominance of installations, video art and everything that falls into the genre of new media. Although, most artists I know practicing new media have studied painting, sculpture, printmaking etc. and not their current medium of choice. I don’t wish to be misunderstood. I don’t have an issue with any medium but with the lack of a unique and artistic proficiency in it.

It is an arguable fact that internationally, the last great movement in art was Abstract Expressionism or at best, Postmodernism. Which means that the world hasn’t seen a truly landmark art movement or artists of truly great caliber for the past thirty odd years.

www.shibuarakaal.com
www.facebook.com/ShibuArakkalPhotoArt/

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

Give Away Alert! – With ‘Barley and Grapes’ and Chateau Auzias

I am thrilled to start this new year with a give away.  And it’s not just one but SIX !! Yes, there are six slings to be won from the signature ArtByAarohi Collection.

The rules are very simple. If you are in Phoenix Market City in namma bengaluru (Bangalore), head on over to ‘Barley and Grapes Cafe’ and order a bottle of Chateau Auzias wine. That purchase gives you the chance to fill in a lucky draw coupon and at the end of every week – there is one sling to be won. That is it. You get to have your wine and keep it too!

And the give away happens in my favourite watering hole – “Barley and Grapes Cafe” which just turned three with my best friend Meghana Vakada.  My voice of reason in all things that require err.. reason!

 

      

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

ChammC with love

ChammC came into my life on a morning walk. Rakesh who is the founder of VoSD was walking his dogs one morning and I happened to meet him. He had a baby carrier of sorts slung around his torso and inside was ChammC. This absolute adorable bundle of joy. A Cocker Spaniel with eyes that would melt the hardest heart.

She was found in a dumpster by a good samaritan and handed over to Rakesh. When found she was in a terrible state with a gigantic hole near her bottom filled with maggots. Tiny and young, I think just 2-3 weeks old. No one thought she would make it. But Rakesh did. He hand reared her for the first three months and literally brought her back to life. And she became Helen and Rakesh’s little love. One amongst the many others that live with them but that is another story!

Sadly ChammC passed away while she was only about 7-8 months old. A routine operation to spay her resulted in complications which led to her passing away on the operating table.

12 July 2015 was one year to the day she left and since I could not get her back for them. I painted ChammC as a gift for both Helen and Rakesh. Three portraits from different grainy Facebook pictures that show her at various ages/stages in her young life.

As all high res images of ChammC were lost in an unfortunate computer crash. The Facebook images were the only ones to work from. I hope these ‘high res’ versions bring comfort to her parents…

chhamC_1

chhamC_2

chhamC_3

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

Trust me

The conversation.

‘Please listen to me. I know what I am talking about. I have your best interests at heart. Trust me. I will go the distance with you. Nothing will happen to you while you are with me...’

I would imagine that of the 4000+ dogs that VoSD has rescued over the past few years and the near 500 that now stay permanently with Rakesh at his farm, this is the conversation he has had with each one. And he has meant and lived up to it too. Every time.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshOrangeDash-final

This painting is one more in a series of narrative portraiture that I have been working on the past few months. Story telling through pictures. Rakesh Shukla is the founder of The Voice of Stray Dogs (VoSD) and the inspiration behind The Poonchh Collection.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshOrangeDash2

It is done with Acrylics and Charcoal on raw plywood. It is approximately 23×30 inches. I layered the base with torn paper and then put paint on it to get a sort of background ready to work on. The colours for the back ground came out of no specific thought or structure, just instinct. In hind sight it is interesting that it has the colours of my country. More so because while I am very patriotic, I know Rakesh cares deeply for our country and her people too. He is always trying to make things better for those less fortunate and believes progress lies in education. Rakesh is the founder of Mi TWB, Free Science and The Voice of Bangalore.

On a backdrop of torn/shredded/scattered, I wanted to paint a picture that is whole and complete in itself. No matter the jagged edges.The endeavour is not to be photo realistic but to capture more.
Intensity. Honesty. Hard work. …and Love.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshOrangeDash1

 

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

Wet nose

Continuing in the series of narratives – story telling through pictures – the effort would be incomplete without a questing, trusting nose in connection with Rakesh Shukla. Rakesh is the founder of The Voice of Stray Dogs (VoSD) and the inspiration behind The Poonchh Collection.

There is nothing more wonderful than waking up to a wet nose sniffing at your neck. OK, there are a few but you have to admit it’s pretty up there in the ‘feel good’ ranks. Anyone who has ever had a dog will tell you that. I have almost always seen Rakesh with dogs. Not one but many. They are exuberant with him and restful. Sometimes boisterous. Sometimes very possessive. But there is always uncomplicated and comforting love.

I wanted to paint that. That feeling of coming home to comfort no matter how much and how many times the world beats you down. You get up and start again. And in between those hard times is a deep, warm comforting breath. That one deep breath that allows you to center yourself.

So here is one of a wet nose and questing snout.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshWith2Dogs

This portrait is done in Acrylics on hard board and is approximately 24×48 inches. The hardboard is reclaimed from a previously unfinished work. I layered it with torn paper and then started work on it with charcoal. The paper used is from my daughters old school note books. On a backdrop of torn/shredded/scattered, I wanted to paint a picture that is whole and complete in itself. No matter the jagged edges. I first thought of using papers from law books or even rules regarding animal welfare in India. But finally thought that the innocence of childhood was a better connection to work with. I had also painted the dogs in greater detail but then went back and obscured them a little.

The endeavour is not to be photo realistic but to capture more.
Dust. Dirt. Grime. Sweat. Hard work. …and Love.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshWith2Dogs1 ArtbyAarohi-RakeshWith2Dogs2

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

Eyes only for you

I asked my husband and kids – what do you think the dog is saying to Rakesh? And their answer was – I looooove you‘. Though it was said with a scrunched up face and a gooey mushy voice. I think the little one is saying that too. But over and above the love I also see joy, devotion and expectation.

Do you see the love, the unquestioning and single minded focus? The expectation? It is like the doggie is saying – come lets play? Or maybe just spend some time with me? Can you imagine the stance of this doggie as he asks – ” Now papa, now. Can we play?”  And to me Rakesh in this portrait looks indulgent but in a kind of resigned way. ” I want to but abhi nahi….”

All of his doggies – his sons and daughters look at him like that. With eyes only for him. He calls himself their ‘papa‘. He is like any father, strict and disciplinary in parts and totally indulgent in others.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshWithRakhee-3

 

This painting is one more in a series of narrative portraiture that I have been working on the past few months. Story telling through pictures as it were. Rakesh Shukla  is the founder of The Voice of Stray Dogs (VoSD) and the inspiration behind The Poonchh Collection.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshWithRakhee1

This is painted with Charcoal and Acrylics on canvas. It is approximately 20×20 inches. I used an older canvas that had a face from my sadhu/mask series. I did not like how that came out. The expression was all wrong. It showed the worst in a person. So I decided to turn it around and paint love on it. Wipe out the negative and bring in the positive 🙂

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshWithRakhee2

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

The mug shot

He jokes about a rugged man who can trace his roots to Azamgarh. Quotes often from Anuraag Kashyap films like Dev D and Gangs of Wasseypur. He can and does draw parallels with real life to plots from Vishal Bhardwaj films like Omkara, Haider and Ishqiya. Wears a gamucha  around is neck/face when he works with his hands on the farm. And got a buzz cut when life got heartrendingly harsh.

Continuing in the series of narratives – story telling through pictures – the effort would be incomplete without a straight on Omkara-esque kind of portrait in connection with Rakesh Shukla. Rakesh is the founder of The Voice of Stray Dogs (VoSD) and the inspiration behind The Poonchh Collection.

And the irony of using the terminology of ‘mug shot’ for this individual – honest and straight forward – is not lost on me. C’est la vie. But such is life as they say.
What does not kill you will only make you stronger!

This next portrait is like a snapshot in time. For me it is a blend of reality and fantasy. Of what lurks in all of us and what civilized veneer we are compelled to put on it. It is like a mug shot of one of the characters of those movies he loves so much. Him and yet not him. A reality far removed from reality.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshWithGamchha

This portrait is done in Acrylics, pencil and charcoal on reclaimed hardboard. It is approximately 12.5×12.5 inches. I had painted the background black to begin with and then decided against it. So I scrubbed some paint off and added more primer/gesso to the background. it is white and not quite white. Just like all of us with many shades of grey…

ArtByAarohi-Gamucha-Rakeshdetail-1  ArtByAarohi-Gamucha-Rakeshdetail-3 ArtByAarohi-Gamucha-Rakeshdetail-4

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

Trial run

When I first conceived of this narrative series on Rakesh, it was based on a photograph that I saw on his Facebook profile. It was slightly fore shortened and distorted. And yet something about it made me think of the years that I have known him and the cards that life has dealt him in those years. His face shows that experience.

I started a trial sketch on a piece of discarded plywood that I had lying in the studio from another project. I did not even prime it. I just started. It took at least 25 passes of paint to get this level of detail. Why? Mainly because the raw plywood kept soaking in the paint. It would sort of look faded or worse start to seep along the grain of the wood.

   

It became a fight between the wood and me. I knew if I could finish this to a detailed enough sketch and not give up half way, I would stick through the series on him. I would go the distance to show me/him/you the story of this man as honestly as I understand it.

And in my mind, some how the process and the many hours of working through these 25 odd layers was my earning the right to work on this series in my own eyes.

ArtbyAarohi-RakeshOnPlywood-Full

This is the ‘trial run’ first of the series. It is done in Acrylics on raw plywood. It is approximately 4.5×6 inches. The painted face itself only covers about 2×2.5 inches. It took about six hours to paint. As I said the plywood and I fought quite a bit!

It does not look completely like him but it did the job it needed to as an exploratory sketch. I was able to glean proportions and structure. This trial run exercise was less about getting a likeness of the face and more about just looking at him. Really looking and letting my mind and eyes learn the shapes and their relationship to each other better.

This painting is one more in a series of narrative portraiture that I have been working on the past few months. Story telling through pictures. Rakesh Shukla is the founder of The Voice of Stray Dogs (VoSD) and the inspiration behind The Poonchh Collection.

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone

After a hard day

I have said this often and say it yet again. An uncomplicated hug makes even the hardest day more bearable…

ArtByAarohi-Rakesh1-20mar2015

I have known Rakesh Shukla for many years now. Over the last  few years I have seen him change and get more and more immersed in what is his passion- dogs. He is the founder of The Voice of Stray Dogs (VoSD). The Poonchh Collection was inspired by him and as such my foray into painting dogs was also because of spending time with his dogs. I have painted many a dog for VoSD. And have painted portraits of him before as well. You can see them here and here. So it seemed a natural progression to paint the two together.

But I did not want to paint a ‘sterile’ picture that just showed him or the dogs as they ‘look’. I want to try and capture a feeling. An essence that is him and his relationship to the dogs. My work is usually very detail oriented. This series of narrative portraits is an effort to break away from surface detail and to also use the support itself to convey some meaning.

The last two years have been tough on my friend. And as a bystander, it has been difficult to watch. But they say adversity truly shows you the mark of a man. And I see him stand tall in spite of it all. I will not go into details of what, how, when and where. That is not for me to share. But I find no matter how much people pull him down, try and malign his reputation, work at eroding his hard work, but they can’t touch the core of the man. His love for the dogs and their boundless love for him.

If a dog will not come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.”
Woodrow Wilson
You can usually tell that a man is good if he has a dog who loves him.”
W. Bruce Cameron, A Dog’s Journey

Dogs are a very good judge of character they say. They sense the essence of a person. And it says a lot about Rakesh that he has nearly 500 of them. They love him unconditionally.

ArtByAarohi-Rakesh2-20mar2015

This painting is the first in a series of narrative portraiture that I have been working on the past few months. It is done with Acrylics on plywood. And is approx. 10×30 inches. The plywood is raw and unfinished. Much like the situation I think he finds himself in. I layered it with torn paper and then started work on it with charcoal.  On a backdrop of torn/shredded/scattered, I wanted to paint a picture that is whole and complete in itself. No matter the jagged edges. The endeavour is not to be photo realistic but to capture more.
Dust. Dirt. Grime. Sweat. Hard work. …and Love.

Share on FacebookPin on PinterestShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone