B Prabha, Painter - If an artist is born then where does it leave art schools?

It is said that an artist is born. Yes, it is true that artists are gifted. But it is also important to go to an art school for training. In a school environment, you prosper because of the healthy competition. You learn from other students. This way you can also rate your talent vis-à-vis the other students in your class. It’s like a race. How far can you go? If you sit and paint at home you will obviously like your own paintings. It’s only when you look at the world that you will realise where you stand. And that’s important. Other qualities that are important are that you have to be a good human being. Then you have to have an appreciative nature, to be able to see the beauty around you. You have to be sensitive. There is so much beauty around us. Just look at the sun, moon and the stars. One life is not enough to study and appreciate all this beauty.

But again, just enrolling in an art school and passing the exams is not enough. You have to practice from day one. Haath saaf hona chahiye. The more you practice the more you will be spontaneous in your work. If artists don’t work even for a month their hands become stiff. Like musicians and singers indulge in regular riyaaz, even artist like painters and sculptors have to do regular riyaaz.

You should learn to draw human beings in different actions. Anatomy is very important. Your paintings should reflect emotions. Tonal value in a painting is very important. If the tonal value in your painting is not correct then your painting will look flat. You have to be able to highlight your subject in the painting. Or else it will get lost in the surroundings. You should be able to feel the distance in the painting.