'Chand' (Moon) - the simple example used in comparing beauty with nature.
The relationship between the Moon and the Earth, a concept known to many but understood by some, is what has inspired Piyush Bavalia over the years.
"I find the relation of the Moon with humans and water fascinating. I feel it's relatable to the life of humans. The phases of the Moon are like the good and bad times one has in his/her life. You go anywhere on earth, the moon and its characteristics remain the same. It has a colossal effect not only on our body, but also our mind. It is so small, yet of much significance for the sustenance of life on Earth. I just love all the facts about the Moon, it just blows my mind. Since the past few years my muse has been the Moon, Oceans and the Mountains."
We have a lot to ask from Piyush on his absolutely stunning pieces of art and drawings on the Moon...
Piyush, tell us a little about yourself...
I'm a Fine Artist from from Sir JJ School of Art based in Mumbai. I had a brief career in the animation industry as a Modelling lead and Generalist from 2006 - 2009. I have worked with Prime Focus, Frameboxx Animation and Visual Effects. While I was working in the digital world I always missed creating by hand, which led me to become a fine artist.
What led you to the world of art?
Art has been my alter ego since childhood. In School people used to know me because of my drawing skills. My cousins used to make me draw their intricate science diagrams and other science projects. All my teachers used to call me M.F. Husain. Therefore, since childhood I was clear that I wanted to pursue art as a career. Back then there were very few people who knew that art can be taken up as a career. I grew up in a background where art was never taken seriously. Everyone used to see it as a hobby which cannot become a livelihood. Thankfully everything has changed, but let me tell you, being a Fine Artist is not easy at all. Actually, no art career is easy. But personally, I feel being a painter is the toughest. It is a struggle between the inside and the outside world.
As your journey with creativity began early, and not being supported can be hard!
Is there a special message you are trying to communicate through them?
I was an avid over-thinker during my college days that affected my practical work. I used to create less and think more. Until the final year of my college, I realised that thinking should just be part of my creation and not the creation itself. Since then, I have been thinking less and creating more. Overthinking really takes the juice out of you and by the end of the day, you feel drained and empty. I draw and paint because if I don't then I miss that feeling of isolation and that urge of creation. I feel really peaceful and complete when I'm all by myself and doing art. It's euphoric.
As your subject- the Moon, is so abstract, how do you create what you create?
Everyone has their own creative process. My creative process is very spontaneous as I keep very little room for planning. I won't say it is time consuming, because I do my art in one sitting- as the moods and state of mind keeps changing. Also, over the years, I have realised that while painting if it goes over to the next day, I may have to start over again. I believe spending enough time with the painting is very necessary, but that does not mean working on it constantly. Maybe just gazing at it, thinking or just visualising. Doing all this really helps me to reach a point where we both are equally satisfied (painting and me). Not every art is good, like not all days are the same. Some are good, some are bad, some are just experiences to remember for life.
Since your process is so spontaneous, how do you overcome a block?
Traveling. Most important thing for me is to travel. It really helps me get over my head, recharge and come back fresh with new perceptions and new ideas. Other than that, I look at artworks done by other artists or watch creative videos by other creators, it really helps. Also, an idea can spark from anywhere, you never know!
What differentiates your work from other creators on Instagram?
I don't look for differences, because I never compare myself to others. In fact, I look for people who are alike, who vibe with my thoughts and way of life. If your artwork is genuine, you are genuine. I believe that the right people will always find you or your artwork and this feeling has grown stronger during the lockdown.
I was able to give a lot more time to my art and sell my work all over the world just through Instagram and my website. Instagram is an amazing platform for creators, but I would never depend completely on it. Social media is unpredictable. You can wake up next morning and Instagram is gone completely!
You are a homegrown artist yourself! What is your vision for the future?
No doubt the future is digital, but I feel each and every handmade piece is unique and that feeling of human touch which I missed during my years in animation will never go out. In fact, I feel it is growing even more valuable with time and it's visible. Physical things have existence of their own, so definitely the future is as bright as it could be.
Finding a sense of joy in what you do and going against all odds to do it, is whats pushing Piyush to create.
A digital phase is in the rising, and what amazes us the most is the sanctity of artists, to not be touched by the impurity of the world around and create original, untainted artworks, depicting only the truth and nothing more.