Tuesday, August 07, 2007

My art will go on (and on)

Not that my family has a history of art failure, but my sister is undoubtedly the most artistic one. She was the first one to start doing henna with a cone, and she was so good I stopped running to the neighbourhood Lalli ki mummy whose idea of a complex henna design was one big shapeless 'circle' surrounded by four smaller ones.

With time, I picked up the cone. Not because I had any particular interest in it, but when you're the six-year-old sidekick of your ten-year-old elder sister, whatever she does is cool and whatever she doesn't is uncool. With time, she graduated to oil on canvas and sand painting and knife painting and what not, while SashBhai was content with doing a different kind of 'knife painting'. Muahahaha! :D Bad jokes aside, no matter how much of a tomboy I'd become, doing henna was something that did not leave me. In fact, I even did my sister's wedding henna. She, of course, could not return the favour because her hands were full with a hyperactive baby Aish wanting to express her creative input too.

Anyway, so when I came to Singapore, I thought that was it - I won't have the opportunity to do any more henna. And that's when I discovered henna for fund-raising. Fun-raising, rather. Henna works wonders at fund-raising events, especially with the non-Indians, and I've been doing it for almost 8-9 years now. And at all these events, they refer to me as 'the henna artist'. It embarrasses me. In all my years of aping my sister's sketching, painting and henna-ing, I have never referred to myself as an 'artist'. It is too grand a word. I prefer to be called the 'henna girl'.

So a few weekends ago, I was asked to do henna at the SVC's Olympic Dream 2007 - an event to raise funds for disability sports in Singapore. On that early sunday morning, I made my way to the stadium packed with people who had apparently been there since midnight! I was directed by the organisers towards the 'Artists' corner', a covered area housing a face-painting artist, a caricaturist, a realistic-sketch artist, a balloon sculpting artist. Whoa. I was one of 'em artists? Gulp. Anyway, I made my way to the henna artist table and stationed myself there. Soon there was a long queue in the 'artist's corner' and all of us got busy with our 'customers'.

Check out my little customer - her hand was so tiny that I was done as soon as I had started!

Soon, it was lunchtime and the crowds started dispersing. The organisers brought in lunch for the (literally) 'starving artists'. We finished eating, but the post-lunch crowd was not there yet, so we started doing random things to occupy ourselves. The balloon artist started to make wristbands with balloons (!) for the organisers. The caricaturist and realistic sketch guy started to sketch random things around them. And I, vaguely aware of something odd happening around me, started to make henna patterns on a piece of paper with great concentration.

Half an hour later, a big crowd had gathered in the artists' corner, but not to get anything drawn. They were just there watching. And that's when I looked up. The realistic sketch guy was holding up his canvas, and I was on it. Me, bent over my sheet of paper, making my henna patterns. Immortalised in charcoal - in all my wild hair glory. The crowd wow-ed.

One of them asked me, "You didn't know he was drawing you, did you??"

I looked at the artist. He was beaming at me, looking really proud.

"No clue at all." I said.

The crowd wow-ed again at the artist's ability to complete the sketch without the subject's knowledge, murmured and finally left. I smiled at the artist and then to myself.


Of course I knew.

Why else would I draw random henna patterns on the sheet of paper with such great concentration? As an artist, I knew when to give another artist his due.

As an artist? Of course. I was an artist.

Keeping SashBhai still and quiet for half an hour is a form of art, you see.



Nandya said...

Hey ...this is a rerun...:D

i protest..:P

Nidhi said...

Gold :D
(After reading the post..that is)
Amazing post...I myself love applying Henna on hands (and consider myself to be decent enuff "artist" at that) :)

Nidhi said...

Missed it by a fraction of a second (now I feel how PT Usha must have felt after missing a medal at Olympics)..well, did I exaggerate?? :P

Sayesha said...

Hainnn??! :O :O A re-run??? What are you talking about?? This only happened a few weeks ago - how can it be a re-run?? Before I write my post, tujhe sapne mein aata hai kya? :D Unless you're confusing it with the two posts I'd written earlier about other fund-raisers where I did henna? :?

Ahahahahaha! If PT Usha read what you wrote, she'll come running after you with her baton! Hahahahaha! :D

ferret said...

its hard to believe,,,but seriously i am not drunk,,,i am not hallucinating,,, its true,,,, i got a bronze!!!!!!!!!!!

Sayesha said...

Step aside, sistah! The bronze is mine! Muahahaha! Enough of people stealing metals off the bar, Bhai has installed a new metal detector at the bar's exit! Now we'll see who gets all the me(d/t)als! :D

ferret said...

and sure it takes an artist to give another one her due,,, in my case i just have to wait for that hidden talent of mine to come out :P

ferret said...

bhai!!! there is someone impersonating you on your own blog, she has the same name as you and she is now even claiming the medals!!!!!!!!!!! himmat to dekho!!

V said...

Can we see the charcoal picture if you have it?

Neihal said...

henna loving bhai... rare :D

Bivas said...

okay officially hum abhi bhi top ten mein hain...
waise artist to u r...but multitalented hona is so wicked ;-)...aur kya kya karti hain aap mohtarma? :-)

Iday said...

With all fights for metals, looks like i have to claim my NOTHING again ;)

As 'v' says, all of us bewdas want to see charcoal picture of "henna artist wali bhai".

Nandya said...

hahaha...hummppphhh!!...i do see its 2007 something and the kid in the picture is new....

BUT my excuse...the theme is familiar.....:D and also the part about the balloon thing and sketch artist ....

theek hai...its new...:P

mathew said...

oh..was it the one that was auctioned at the Sotheby's and was sold for a million dollar or somethin.. ;-P

Sayesha said...

Hahahaha! There ij only vun Bhai! Kya? :D

Kyun kyun? Bahut shauk hai - to see me in my wild hair glory? Dhakkan tu toh mere Orkut par hai! :D

This Bhai is sabse alag. :P

Karta toh apun bhot kuchh hai. Tame aane par pata lagenga! :D

Viv said it doesn't look like me, so I didn't post it, hehehe! :P

Ufff! Oye dhakkan! Annual fund-raising event ka matlab maloom hai?? Annual??? Har saal woich! Samjha kya? Ufff! Some people! :/

Yeah, that's the one. And that's how the artist became a millionaire while the subject is still a starving artist! Hmmph! Subjects should be given a cut, yeah? :/

Iday said...

//Viv said it doesn't look like me, so I didn't post it, hehehe! :P
Unfair :(

Sayesha said...

Hehehe... what to do - I am so pati-vrata! :P :P :P

Bivas said...

//I am so pati-vrata! :P :P :P
what happened to gender equality!!!

Sayesha said...

//what happened to gender equality!!!

Gaya tel lene! I am in fultu bhartiya naari mode! :D

Iday said...

//Hehehe... what to do - I am so pati-vrata! :P :P :P
Yeah right. Is it April first already??? :P

satish said...

aap toh hero ho bhai! hum sabhi ke aadarsh. kabhi gundon kee dhulaai wulaai kee hai kya??

Sayesha said...


Ahahaah! Teri dhulaai ki hai na! :D