SACHI NAIK | NT BUZZ
Ponda based artist Mithila Kelkar Upadhye always dreamed of having a space to encourage art enthusiasts to express themselves and work freely, and thus the art space ‘Ink Twiddle’ was born. When her art studio was launched on July 3, 2018, she was very delighted to serve people who shared the same passion as her.
It’s been almost a month that the studio is functioning, with a few enrolments already in place and many others are keen to join. ‘Ink Twiddle’ is a space where Mithila teaches people to pour their heart out into art. The idea is to make people aware of the ‘vast’ factor in art by introducing them to different techniques, styles and mediums of work. It’s a belief that art is nothing but scribbling on a paper and can be done only by the artists, however she believes that this gift can also be learned with passion, practice and dedication. “The stroke of paint by a famous artist creates magic, everyone believes in it but no one knows the pains and struggles behind it. This can be replicated by anyone with dedication,” she says.
Most parents get annoyed when they see their toddlers and infants sketch on the walls or cupboards. For Mithila, it was a different atmosphere altogether. She would sketch her infant art on almost any surface in the house and her parents encouraged her rather than scolding her. Fine art was pre-decided but she cannot recall when exactly. “Fine art was the only zealous choice I had in my mind and my parents supported me to join it.” It is quite interesting that Mithila’s mother has documented her childhood artworks that are still kept safe at her mother’s house.
Mithila who received the exposure in art in school and home expresses her joy over her ability to provide a platform for those who always had a will but never got a chance to explore their ability. To some extent creating, performing a piece of art is a healing or stress relieving activity. It is a need of the hour to relieve the stress of work, family and society puts on us. “Everyone should at least preserve and nourish one artistic quality,” she believes.
An artist is not confined to any particular space. Fine art includes all the forms and techniques and craft is one of them. Besides paintings, Mithila is involved in all types of crafts as well. “There is no particular style or technique that I work on always, it depends on my disposition and the environment I am in. I work in watercolours, acrylics, gouche, art markers, etc. I prefer mixing different mediums as I get different amazing effects and rhythms. Recently I’ve begun working with ink colours on a series of artworks.”
Only the attitude of a student can help one learn throughout his life, the moment you feel you have learnt everything, you put an end to your learning. “I get calls from people of the ages between 15 and 50 plus, and it is an immense pleasure to witness how people are open to learning and innovating new ideas regardless of their age,” she believes that art welcomes anyone regardless of their conditions. The more variant the age, the more Mithila awaits to serve them artistically.
Despite art being a creative and fun-loving activity, the sad truth lies in the way people only look at it as a hobby. “How many would willingly want to become a full time professional artist? Answer is hardly one; at least it’s not the first choice for anyone. Even skilled people fear entering this field professionally. I have had the industry experience for almost a decade. The mindset of our people has to change.”
Mithila cites that she often wonders why there are so many artworks created using so much of material which wastes money and also occupies unnecessary space? She explains that art is a necessity, which drives one to work continuously, and to remain active in the field. “It’s not always about earning. Once this point of view, of looking at art as the medium to earn money changes more people will take it as a full time activity. Art of course has the ability to bring money but this profession is always underestimated monetarily.”
‘Ink Twiddle’ has a lot of goals to fulfil in terms of organising activities but as of now Mithila concentrates on the purpose of helping people to use this platform to enhance their artistic instincts. She also says that she would be grateful to fellow artists who would want to share their knowledge and use the studio space.