Yatin Belani

29th November 2017

“I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way - things I had no words for.” - Georgia O’Keeffe, American artist.

Probably, such were the thoughts of 8-year old Ishaan Nandkishore Awasthi, the main protagonist of Taare Zameen Par, a highly acclaimed film that explores the trials and tribulations of Ishaan, a shy and introvert boy with a learning disorder. The film shows the young boy being subjected to constant rebuke from his father owing to his miserable performance in school. His father attributes his weak academic performance to his laziness and lack of interest in studies when in reality, the child is suffering from dyslexia - a condition that makes it difficult for him to fathom the mysteries of letters and words because of his inherent learning disability. This is despite the fact that Ishaan’s intelligence is above average and he is a gifted child who excels in art - a talent that goes unnoticed until he is sent to boarding school where his life takes a new turn when he meets Ram Shankar Nikumbh, a perceptive art teacher with an unconventional teaching style. It is his art teacher who brings about a major change in Ishaan’s life by nurturing his talent for art and helping Ishaan discover his hidden potential. In due course of time and with the use of remedial techniques, Ram Shankar Nikumbh is able to help the child successfully overcome both his low self-esteem and his learning disorder and also help him to do free online promotion of art and showcasing his art to the world.

Amidst the various soul-stirring and thought-provoking moments that the film brings to the fore for introspection and deliberation on the part of its viewers, a notable aspect that stands out is how the withdrawn child uses art as a medium to express his unspoken feelings and imagination. As one gets a glimpse into Ishaan’s imaginary world of art, one can make out that his make-believe world is a far cry from the practical world of adults; a creative space that is filled with wonders and where colours and animals rule over the real-world practicalities of cut-throat competition, excellent grades etc.

What is Art?

“Art is freedom. Being able to bend things most people see as a straight line.”

“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.”

It is often said that art is liberating. At times, when even words fail to convey what we want to say, it is art that comes to our rescue. It lets us apply our imagination and creative skill to transmit our innermost thoughts and emotions to others. Indeed, when one observes how art, in its diverse forms, gives an avenue to people to express themselves creatively and in their own way, one cannot help but agree that this is so true! Read: how to awaken your soul through Art.

When we think of art, it is usually painting, music, dance, literature or sculpture that pops up in our mind. However, art is not just about what we make out of it with our narrow perspectives. It is also not about its visual forms only. In fact, the scope of art is so broad and diverse that it is beyond the limitation or boundary of definitions and classifications. As long as you have an idea that you are able to give shape to in a personalised manner and with your heart and soul put into it, your efforts may become symbolic of art! Truly speaking, art is an extension of your personality, a part of your soul. It is a medium to showcase how you look at the world and your perception of it; a platform to narrate your life’s experiences and demonstrate your hidden passions and emotions to others.

“Art is not always about pretty things. It’s about who we are, what happened to us, and how our lives are affected.” - Elizabeth Broun, Ex-Director, Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Renwick Gallery

Myriad Challenges of an Aspiring Artist

“Money is something that can be measured; art is not. It’s all subjective.”- Jerry Saltz, American art critic

The very aspect that a piece of art may be influenced by its creator’s personal thoughts, ideas, opinions, feelings, tastes, experiences and philosophies, rather than being a plain manifestation of his or her creative skills, is what lends art its innate subjectivity and makes it prone to individual sensibilities and viewpoints. Think of it this way. You have a room full of art connoisseurs looking at a painting or sculpture and admiring it as a collective group. At the surface level, all of them are in agreement that the object in front of them is certainly praiseworthy and deserves to be cherished till eternity. Interestingly, despite their unanimous approval of the art, their reasons for applauding it will generally vary. While some may connect with the art emotionally, others may feel that it strikes a chord with their creative sensibilities. Still others may see merit in its technical finesse and fine detailing. Then again, it is quite possible that the audience may be an interesting mix of promoters and detractors of the art.

“Art is not what you see but what you make others see.”

It is evident from the above that the same piece of art may evoke different feelings in different people owing to the fact that each individual looks at it with his or her own viewpoint and outlook on life. Thus, one of the common challenges faced by an artist, especially the budding ones, is to discern what art to make and whether an audience exists for their specific type of art. As one can make out, a piece of artwork that may be frame-worthy for one may not even elicit a glance from another!

Next is the arduous activity of hunting for an opportunity or platform to showcase their art talent to others. Not to forget the interim stress of having to fend for themselves, till such time their art is validated by a reputed body or established artist and publicly recognised by a wider audience. This is one of the most trying phases for aspiring artists as it tests their self-belief and their ability to hold on to their art, even when others are dismissive of it or merely pass it off as yet another innocuous and ambitious attempt to make a foray into the glitz and glamour of the larger than life art world.

“Art is never finished, only abandoned.” - Leonardo da Vinci, Italian Renaissance polymath

Even when one has finally managed to break the shackles of anonymity and bring his or her art out in the public, one is not completely free of self-doubt and brutal soul-searching - emotional states that are commonplace in the crowded, competitive and chaotic world of emerging artists. The pressure to constantly innovate and excel in their chosen field of art and the disappointment of their art not being appreciated well enough or the fact that there are not enough takers for their kind of art can ultimately break the confidence of even the most promising and self-assured artist and affect his or her creative streak and imagination, resulting in mediocre artwork that is heavily borrowed from the work of others and lacks originality or newness in thought.

Last but not the least, almost all artists, amateur or experienced, undergo sporadic creative blocks at some point in their artistic careers - a potentially career-limiting period in an artist’s life when he or she feels stuck and fails to draw inspiration to stimulate his or her internal creativity, which is instrumental in turning out fresh and inspirational work.

How Can Alieensoul Give You The Artistic Platform of Your Dreams?

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” - Pablo Picasso, Spanish painter and sculptor

Designed to aid upcoming and veteran artists in showcasing and promoting their art and talent to the outside world, Aileensoul is a completely free portal that encourages artistic people from various art fields to let loose their imagination and create impressive videos and audios of their inventive work, which can be uploaded on its portal to make them visible to the wider Aileensoul community that comprises people from various walks in life.

As an upcoming wildlife photographer, you can post awe-inspiring shots of birds and animals in their various moods and natural habitats or share PDF copies of your amazing work as a writer or lyricist. Moreover, as an artist, you will be able to follow specific artistic categories that resonate with you and enhance your knowledge and awareness of them through regular newsfeed and updates that are sent to you once you start following these categories.

Giving artists a rare and unique chance to collaborate on an open and online platform where they can connect with diverse groups of people and exchange creative thoughts and ideas with them, Aileensoul is truly the platform that every artist needs to advance their artistic careers through free online promotion of their art and at a scale that may not be possible with conventional marketing strategies.

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