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I Was Adamant On Not Giving Up: Sandhya Swaminathan

Sandhya Swaminathan has created an immense following on social media with her pencil portraits. This Ooty girl is moving ahead successfully on a career path she charted for herself. The magic she creates on paper is purely out of her love for art, not to mention, it takes a lot hard work and concentration to do something in this genre. Though it began as a hobby, it took the 24-year-old considerable time to realise that sketching is her true calling.

SheThePeople.Tv spoke with this young and confident artist to know more about her journey. Some edited excerpts from the interview:

It was never a part of any plan. After I left my job, I was figuring out what I have to do next. I started sketching as a hobby and that’s when all of it started.”

On realising sketching is her calling

Sandhya, studied engineering and was working with a firm in Bengaluru, when she realised that she didn’t enjoy the 9-5 job. And that was it. She quit and returned home. She says, It was never a part of any plan. After I left my job, I was figuring out what I have to do next. I started sketching as a hobby and that’s when all of it started.”

On the role of social media

In Sandhya’s case too, social media’s impact has been tremendous. She believes it is the motivation that she got online kept her going.  In her words, “It has played a vital role in what I am today. If I hadn’t posted my drawings in the initial stages, nothing would’ve got noticed. I got appreciative feedback from friends on Facebook. However, it is when I posted my work on Instagram, even people who I didn’t know messaged me and appreciated me immensely. This is the power of social media.”

Sandhya Swaminathan Sketch Artist

Priyanka Chopra’s Sketch | Photo Credit: Sandhya Swaminathan

On subject choices and rewarding sketches

Sandhya’s Jack Sparrow sketch is the first detailed sketch that she drew in about 6 hours time. It was the most basic one and also very close to her, since it is only recently that she upgraded her tools.  

These days, her superhero sketches are gaining immense popularity. When asked about how she chooses her subjects, she reflected, “These days, people sketch to reach a wider audience. Meaning, they’ll sketch artists and celebrities who have a great popularity and followers. This way their art is promoted widely and becomes popular. For me, reaching an audience is a good thing, however, I only believe in sketching someone who I really like and gives me meaning. If I have to spend about six hours on a sketch, I would do it for someone I relate to.”

“As much as I love to create art, I love to teach it too. “

Sandhya is already conducting workshops and delivering seminars. She is glad to have got the opportunity for the same and loves to teach children. Recently she was invited to her own college (Kumaraguru College of Technology Coimbatore) to conduct a workshop. She told us about her experience, When I went over to my college, it was an overwhelming feeling. The happiest part is when children send their work to me even after the workshop over. I would like to do more of it.”

Sandhya Swaminathan Sketch Artist

Jack Sparrow Sketch | Photo Credit: Sandhya Swaminathan

“When we are able to work for eight hours a day on something that we don’t like and anyway pursue it, it is a given that we can spend any amount of time on something that we love.”

When we asked Sandhya, what is it that keeps her concentration intact, she told it is the love for her work and the joy she experiences while she’s on it. She believes dedication is the key. Initially, she did try to finish up sketches to get results faster. However, she calmed down with time. She added, “Haste spoils the art. Also, you don’t come to know how time goes by when you love to create something like this.”

” I did have to ignore a lot of comments and taunts from people around. However, I was adamant about not giving up. Eventually, everyone realised, they’re proud [of me] and support me unconditionally.”

Rising above doubt and gaining family support

Sandhya did face a brush of doubt when she planned to take up sketching as a career. Her family was sceptical. However, now that she’s tasting success with something she loves, her family is proud of her.  She says, ” I did have to ignore a lot of comments and taunts from people around. However, I was adamant about not giving up. Eventually, everyone realised, they’re proud [of me] and support me unconditionally.”

https://www.instagram.com/p/BjAcXl8BM_U/?hl=en&taken-by=sandhya_swaminathan

Advice to children pursuing art

There are young children who hold great interest in sketching, however, they’re apprehensive of the idea of making it a career. Sandhya believes that art is a talent. She says, “People pursue such a stream and give up midway thinking they are not good enough. I want to tell these children that everyone has a different method and there’s no definition of what is successful or not. As long as you enjoy art, you can pursue it.” Sandhya, sometimes even bring children home to teach randomly, gives them a pen and paper to draw anything they like.  She believes everyone is talented and people should be willing to back such talent.

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Bhawana is an intern with SheThePeople.Tv