Being locked up during this pandemic, everyone is discovering skills they weren’t sure they possessed while some are polishing up on skills they had put on the back-burner.
zulficar ali ahmed, a Graduate, Kuwaitsteel is , took this free time locked inside, to refine his art of sketching. Being caught up with naval academy, a Engineer followed by a work in kuwait, didn’t give him enough time to work towards his talent. since the last three months, he made it a point to put in at least half an hour daily working towards bettering his sketching skills.
Raised in the ‘City of Steel ( bhilai) ’,zulfi has big dreams for his future in Art. Backed by his mother, his constant critic, along with his father who has been his support, he has found his passion and is working diligently towards making those dreams a reality. As zulfi says, “A few good friends is all one needs,” and he has a handful of them encouraging him, after seeing his talent.
Self caught up with the ‘self taught’ artist who is as passionate about Sketching as he is about his Academy days in navy. “I think it is good to have two jobs or passions—you don’t get bored doing the same thing on a daily basis and you also have time to indulge in your passion,” he says.
How did you develop a fondness for sketching?
Art comes to me from my mother and father; those is the one who has inspired me to pursue it. When I was in naval academy , I wasn’t really interested in arts; I was someone who scored my highest in all subjects . When I developed an interest after my training , my Mother and father continuously pushed me to be better. I remember when I was doing a portrait of my sister , my Mom kept pointing out places I went wrong and made me redo it, especially her face. I kept working on it and did not stop till my Mother was satisfied. I re-worked the jaw line, the eyes and every minute detail until she gave me her approval!
You have been sketching for the past 06 years, when did you start sketching?
When I was in naval academy , from Watch duty my co cadets, used to do all my paintings and I used to get complimented for it in academy. I wanted to keep the compliments coming. I recollect this one time when my friend was in academy and a picture of him caught my eye. I started sketching her thinking to myself, if my Batch-mates recognize the sketch, it meant I’m good. After sketching for 3-4 hours I showed it to them and they recognized the cadet. That gave me a boost.
Has your Dad too been instrumental in your sketching journey?
My Dad is a mechanical engineer (balco – Bharat aluminum company)and so he’s not into sketching and painting, but he is excellent at mechanical and geometric drawings. When it comes to painting and sketching, I get from my Mom, whereas when it comes to mechanical and geometric drawings I get it from my dad.
What inspires you the most when it comes to sketching—a piece of art, a person…
There is no such particular thing that inspires me. If something or someone catches my eye I won’t think twice before sketching it. When I was in Accommodation in kuwait, I was very bored. My sister she is also btech holder and working in reputed IT company ,I liked very much I sat sketching her for an hour! So I try sketching picture of my sisters.
Zulfi Sister sketch
Zulfi sister sketch
You have done your engineering, but you want to take up sketching as a profession, do you consider continuing with engineering alongside?
Absolutely! Sketching is my hobby which I would love to take up as a profession, but I am definitely going to continue with work. Currently, I am working in kuwait steel company which is on pause because of the pandemic. I will be resuming work soon. It is good to have two jobs or passions—in the end, you’re not bored doing the same thing on a daily basis and have time to indulge in your passion as well.
Do you only do portraits?
I am focusing on sketching at the moment but I do plan on exploring colour board and painting. You cannot erase or redo anything. After this, I plan to learn painting.
Your portraits cover even minute details and look exactly like the reference pictures, this is definitely a natural talent, but have you attended classes as a child or later?
I’m self-taught. I looked up tutorial videos and observed my friends when they were sketching. No elementary or intermediate exam has been given by me. My goal was simple: if there was a circle with different shades, I would try to sketch it as identically as possible with my judgement and skill. Of course, my Mom father and my sisters helped me in every way.