Shades of Passion

Here's an insight into the mind of a person who's in love with Music, Art and Science.......:)

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Art is a journey, not a destination!

(Before I start my ramblings, I have to thank Ananth, Sujit, Saptarshi and Emtiyaz who've been great critics of my Art and are responsible for the progress I've made in sketching. I am beginning to believe, Good Critics play a role of a Good Parent in the growth of Art)

How would you feel about a chef who pays more attention to how a dish is garnished and served on table than how it actually tastes??? Or a teacher who's more worried about how neatly you write your answers in an exam than WHAT you write for an answer??? Frustrated? Angry? Well, I am one of these kind of people who fuss over the micro picture more than the macro picture, in Art though.............and I have to profusely thank Entiyaz for giving me those proper words, macro and micro, to make me realize where I was going wrong in my sketching! It's not as if the same thing has not been told to me before! But this is for the first time, Emti was able to point out to me WHAT exactly was wrong!

And before, I have had discussions with Sujit and Ananth about my sketches. And while discussing the Angelina Jolie sketch of mine with Ananth (, this topic came up! What does one look for in an Art Piece? Perfection? Frankly, I WAS looking for perfection! And in my quest for perfection, I lost out on that factor which differentiates Good Art from DAMN GOOD Art........FEEL of the Art.........

When I look at a picture I plan to sketch, what strikes me is the complexity! Complexity of the strokes, complexity of the colours, complexity of the combinations....................everything else but the FEEL of the Art!!!!! What would the subject be feeling when the picture was drawn? Is the girl in the picture trying to say something? What could she be thinking when the sketch was made? Is she sad? Angry? Pensive? Thoughtful? Excited??????

And I'm not surprised that for a long time, I was losing out on doing good Art as I was working too hard at trying to eliminate the micro-errors! And one can never reach perfection in Art! Because there is NO PERFECTION in something so subjective...............something or the other will always go wrong. Something or the other will always be out of the way to make the Art less than perfect.....and THAT is the beauty of the Art! You can never really reach THE summit! And this goes with what I've written about maths and Art! There's no FINAL in Art! Art is a journey, not a destination! So, I'm trying hard to give up on my quest for perfection and trying to concentrate on the feel! Let me see where I reach!!!!!! Or rather, let me see how enjoyable this journey is!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, June 26, 2006

This one's a different India

The idea for this blog sprang to my mind when I saw a very different setting in this very country, a couple of kilometres outside this "metro" Bangalore......on my way home to a small town near Mandya. And I have been thinking about it ever since! Which India is real, the India that I left behind, or the India that I came to live in????

When I boarded the bus, I had not the faintest idea that I was going to write a blog about what was awaiting me! So, on that fateful Saturday evening, I boarded the bus to Mandya. As the bus left the city (and the noise, pollution and chaos associated with Bangalore), the scenes around me started becoming more and more sparse. There was more land and less people visible. Green sprawling fields, small pumps spewing water for irrigation..............and I was feasting my eyes over these heavenly scenes.

It started getting dark soon and I changed bus from Mandya. Upto Mandya, it was all ok (I was travelling in a deluxe bus anyway that does a good job of keeping you away from the very world it travels in). From Mandya, I took a routine Government bus to go to the small sleepy town of K. M. Doddi. The road between the two roads was the first thing that struck me! I have seen some pretty rough terrain in Bangalore itself, but this beat all that!!!!!!!! No wonder foreign tyre manufacturers run to India for tyre tests!

There were potholes deep enough to send me rocketing towards the roof at times and the people around me didn't even seem to notice. My discomfort seemed out of place to them. Maybe they were all used to it, I wasn't. And much to my dismay, the guy sitting next to me could speak English, somewhat. So, his interrogation session started! Where are you from? I said a non committal Bangalore. You don't look Indian, I just flashed one of those "I'm not interested in talking any further with you" kind of smile (that weakly resemble a delta function in the parlance of Maths, existent only for a fraction of a second). But he was not to be discouraged. Why are you going to K. M. Doddi? I said, my father lives there. Oh! You stay in London (I have not yet understood what gave him an impression that I was from London, I wore a kurta)? I said no. It seems New York was the only other "phoren" place he knew about. So he asked, then you must be from New York. I told him no. So, he introduced himself, myself Satish. At this point, I had to tell him, Look, whoever you are, I want some time to myself, so please go talk to someone else!!!!!! He gave me a weak smile and changed his seat!

As the bus was travelling, I could see that it was pitch dark outside. An occasional flicker of light could be seen coming from some lantern hanging outside some house. Most of the time, it was a black nothingness seen from the window. All the time I was not saving my head from banging into the roof, I was trying to imagine an unlit place (with my stay in places like Delhi and Bangalore, it IS a rare sight).........and here it was, completely dark. A barking dog here and there, one or two people sitting on the roadside, talking.......and fields of sugarcane! This was all I could see......

And then, I reached K. M. Doddi. My parents came to pick me up so with a fast forward button, I was in present again. And I watched TV, and listened to some World Space Music! THIS was the world I could identify with more easily! It was almost a haunting thought to think back of times when I was travelling through pitch dark roads with not a soul around most of the time!

At night, when my Mom and I were chatting, she told me about how BACKWARD the place around is! It seems some girl had committed suicide as the people around termed her characterless and she won't get married. All this because she used to talk to boys studying in her class of B.Sc. Maths (yes, this place does have a College with a strength of 8000 and 15 streams available, but boys and girls are not allowed to talk on campus premises). This forced me into thinking WHAT these people would think of me???? I go out with boys to eat out, watch movies, two-three days' trekking trips!!!!!! Mom told me about how people actually stand in groups watching any girl who dares to wear a jeans! How they comment to the parents of "such" girls! It was nauseating after a certain point! I didn't quite know what to think of allthis!

All that came to my mind was, is THIS the same India that I live in in Bangalore? Or it's some other planet I've been transported to? In a way, I wanted to have nothing to do with this India, I was scared that THIS India shall shred me to pieces! Will think of me as nothing but a characterless nobody!!!!!

And today, I am back to this country of mine, with Internet, cell-phones, SMSes, "boys"......shall I call myself an escapist? I ran away from the India a big fraction of our population lives in!!!!!!! Which India is real? This one or the one I ran away from????

Thursday, June 15, 2006


A quotation I came across that created an impact on me:

Discussions are exchange of knowledge, arguments are exchange of ignorance.......

Nice one, I'd say..............

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Maths vs. Art: Objective vs. Subjective????

The title sounds hi-funda, eh? B-)

I feel great about having been a part of this discussion. Not only because it sounds hi-funda but because this is one of my favourite topics. Abstract vs. precise.......

It started off with someone saying "Art has a lot of Maths in it but there's no Art in Maths". Now, the discussion lasted for aboutt two hours with two of the members against the statement and the third one (the one who made the statement) in favour. Let's name the ones in favour as F and the ones against as A. There were points after points made for and against the statement and I can possibly never remember all that was said. So, I shall list the most important ones and at the end of it a quote that sprang to my mind as a result of the discussion (improvised by the one who made the statement).....

The points are:

1. Art is supposed to be subjective where there's nothing like correct or wrong. There's only a good or bad and THAT too is heavily dependent on the perception of an individual. On the other hand, Maths is either correct or wrong. There's a proof for everything and the proof can be verified by anyone who expresses and doubt.

2. In deciding whether the Art is good or not, the steps taken while creating it are not of as much importance as the final result. Whereas in maths, the steps taken are of importance for they are under scrutiny and are available even after the proof is completed. Not only that, there may be more than one proofs and hence, every proof is to be checked.

3. There's this creativity element involved in Art that may or may not need any prior information/knowledge. Whereas in Maths, you need apriori knowledge database.

4. There's no talent needed for Maths, it's about skill and practice (something the A strongly disagreed with). Whereas for Art, there's talent needed along with skill and practice. The "A"s feel that there is something called an aptitude/talent for Maths too. And by the way, we ended up reading up a lot of definitions from the dictionary. I list them here as one needs to know these definitions before one conlcudes whether one's in favour of this statement or against it.

(a) Talent: Natural or innate qualities
(b) Innate: From birth, Inbuilt (without teaching)
(c) Skill: An ability that has been acquired by training
(d) Art: The products of human creativity; works of art collectively, The creation of beautiful or significant things

So, we deduced that there is a certain degree of talent as well as skill needed to be good at both Maths and Art.

5. Art has this humane element to it whereas Maths is free of that humane touch, Creativity being the only human link between the two. The "A"s strongly disagreed again.

If you read the statement, there's this humane element to it. "Art has a lot of Maths in it but there's no Art in Maths". The word ART there brings about the humane nature to the whole thing. What is Art to one is not Art to the others. I know people who call Maths "Beautiful". So, beauty can't be unless that ONE person sees it. So, if someone finds Maths beautiful, it becomes a form of Art. So, Art can not be free of Maths (for some people) and Maths can be an Art (to some other people).......

At the end of this all, I came up with a quote (with a slight change brought about by the "F" of our discussion Group and create a balance between the aesthetic and precise element of the quote).......

The truth of subatomic Physics is not Maths, it's Art

For those who wish to understand it, please meet me for a coffee at Coffee Board, I shall elaborate..........:)