Ink Tales–Let’s hear them from Tanvi Karnik

Tanvi Karnik

Visual storytelling is an art, which if done properly can convey the message as prominently as the words of a celebrated poet, or the music of an eminent artist, and also the intricate moves of a dancer.

Tanvi has started to do just that. She is an ink artist and is regaling her audience with classic pieces of art created almost daily!

In her own words:

I was just a regular person trying to figure out what my passion was. I have a masters degree in psychology, and was working as an Assistant teacher in Oberoi International school. But when my passion for doodling which was just a hobby turned into commissions and orders, I realized it’s times to take a leap–quit my job–and put all my energies into my art. I got to say, that’s the best decision of my life.

She has an entrepreneur budding in her and she has taken the leap of faith to make her own choice of a career path–something that she feels passionate about!

Ink Tales–Tanvi’s brand–is a journey of art that tells stories and conveys emotions poignantly. We had an email interview with her about her journey.

Q1. How did you get inspired to take up this art?

I always used to doodle since my college days–in my notes, the corners of my textbook, anywhere I would find space. Sometimes even the desks in class! My doodles would mostly gravitate towards intricate patterning and florals. I only used pens and never touched any other art mediums. My father, Ashok Karnik, an artist himself, noticed my love for all these rough patterns and doodles. On his trip to Delhi, he came across an artist Aakash Anand who specializes in black and white ink illustrations. He showed me his work, and then there was no looking back for me. He was my first stroke of inspiration. Seeing his work made me realize that one can do so much with a black pen. After some research into this new field of ink, I found my idol, Kerby Rosanes of Sketchy Stories. He is my inspiration and the reason I want to draw each and every day of my life.

Q2. Do you do it full-time or is it a part-time activity?

I used to get a lot of appreciation from my family and friends for my artwork, so I created a page on Facebook. I started my page in May 2014. It was just a hobby and a part-time activity. Within 4 to 5 months, my work garnered a very positive response, which lead to a couple of commissions and orders.

I was working as an assistant teacher, so I left that job and decided to give my full time and energy to my art. It was a risk, as art is a very temperamental field. Sometimes you earn, but there can be times when you may not get anything. But that did not matter to me. I never did my art for money. I do it because the time I sketch away is the time I am the happiest and at peace. It’s very rare to find your passion, I found mine and I wasn’t going to let it go.

Q3. Do you seek inspiration from daily life or need special time?

It’s a mix of both. Honestly, I am very moody when it comes to art. I believe that you cannot force it, you just have to be and the inspiration comes. Sometimes things in daily life like the latest trends, movies, situations, people, etc do inspire me. But sometimes I just go blank and it takes me a couple of days to feel inspired again. When that happens, I just take a break, watch shows and completely relax. Then suddenly something falls into place, and a topic to draw just comes to me. My timings are also very funny. While the world works from 9 to 5, I prefer to work from 5 pm to 3 am. I do my art all night and sleep during the day.  And very surprisingly these odd timings make me work better and feel more inspired.

Q4. What kind of potential lies for an artist who would like to take drawing as a career?

There is a lot of potential for an artist when it comes to making art as a career, but I also feel that luck plays a very strong factor in making it big. It’s a combination of talent, hard work, and luck. You need these three elements to make a career as an artist. It’s actually very difficult, and you cannot start your career by wanting to immediately strike gold. You should be prepared to earn less in the start, sometimes you may even not earn. But you still need to keep at it, and work hard with determination. You need to keep producing good work, improve yourself as an artist, and then one fine day, you will get noticed and appreciated for your work. And once you make your mark, trust me, you will have a much better income than most of the jobs, plus you will be doing something you love at the same time.

Q5. What kind of stationery items, brands do you use for your art–any recommendations for upcoming artists?

I use Staedtler pigment liners of different sizes ranging from 0.05 to 0.8. I feel they are the best. But sometimes I also use Micron pinpoint pens, but only for my smaller artworks and sketches. For my big projects and orders, I only use Staedtler pens because those are the best. I would recommend Faber Castle markers, Staedtler/Micron pens and a must-have for all artists is a Moleskine Sketchbook.

Q6. Do you take teaching classes with children who would like to learn drawing/sketching?

As of now, I feel that I myself need to develop as an artist and learn a lot before I can start teaching anyone.  But in the future, I am considering conducting short zentangle/doodle workshops for all ages.

Q7. What does a typical day in your life look like?

Well, I wake up late; have a much-needed mug of steaming tea. Then I start my day. I can never draw before 2 pm. I don’t know why, but I just can’t. So from 2 pm, I generally do research, referencing, update my art profiles, work on my art page, etc. If I am not in the mood, I just watch shows.  When the clock strikes 5 pm, that’s when I sit. Then I do not stop still at 3 am.  I take mini-breaks in the middle, where I read, play with my dog Toulouse, or just listen to some music to recharge.

Q8. What are you hoping to do in the future?

Hopefully, by the start of next year, I plan to create my own website, where I shall have my own online store. I sell my art on a website called Cupick, where my art is available in the form of cards, posters, and prints. I plan to open up more such stores online and start selling my work in the form of phone cases, laptop skins, t-shirts, framed prints, mugs, etc. I have a lot of plans, but first I am concentrating on making “Ink Tales” a brand, and increasing my portfolio.

Q9. A message for our readers…

Life is easier and more beautiful when we spend time doing what we love. It takes time, but please find your passion. Let no one decide what you should do, and no one can tell you what you can or cannot do. So take that leap of faith, find out what you love, and trust me, you will wake up each and every day of your life with a smile on your face.

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