When I was 10 years old
I was about 10 years old when I realized I was good at drawing – my apples and bananas were closer to real apples and bananas than other kids’ apples and bananas. It felt amazing to be good at something, especially something that most others struggled with. It gave me such confidence and pride. I drew to show off my skills.
When I was 20 years old
I participated in competitions, won some, made paintings to hang at home and what not. After school, I applied to and got accepted at the premier National Institute of Fashion Technology in New Delhi for my undergrad to study fashion design. Things were different here. EVERYBODY was good at drawing. Most I thought were better at it than I was. So I drew to catch up.
When I was 24 years old
During college I launched a brand for handbags called ‘3 Mad Chicks’ with my 2 best friends which was doing really really well. Our designs were very popular and well appreciated. Running a startup, most of our time went in sourcing, operations, vendor seller management, and marketing among a thousand other things. Also, “painting” had taken a back seat. We were mostly focused on designing bags using software (illustrator, corel and photoshop). Drawing pretty much became limited to designs for bags. I drew for the brand.
When I was 26 years old
I completed my Masters of Business Administration from the University of Oxford. The year was a roller coaster with finance, economics, analytics, garden parties, college balls, college plays, group assignments and a million other things. I drew to pass time when I zoned out during lectures.
When I was 27 years old
I started working in marketing for Startup India in New Delhi. Work was fun and I learnt a lot. I was having fun in the new role and it kept me happily busy. Between work, dates, friends and TV shows I didn’t find the time to paint. I didn’t draw.
When I’m 29 years old
I moved to California last year after my wedding. I had a lot of time at home while looking for a job, so I started to paint again and remembered how much I enjoy it. This was the first time I drew and painted without any goal or objective in mind. After so many years of painting I only recently realized how fun, relaxing and satisfying painting really is. It is a completely different experience when you do it for its own sake. Now, I draw because I love to.