Sunday, February 13, 2011

IN A NUTSHELL…

In an old shack of a building- on the walls there hung beautiful painting of two men playing a game of chess. Their shadows extended showing that it was night, and the light only came from an oil lantern lit beside one of them. There was also a painting of children going to school in a rickshaw, while the man who was pulling the rickshaw- was actually a boy, almost the same age as the other kids who were in the rickshaw.

May be I did not realize what these paintings were about actually- back then. I was busy copying my drawing homework. I usually had to draw a painting off the memory. That part was my nightmare. I was never good at drawing what was in my mind. Not that I wouldn’t try. But it usually made people think- I ought to stop watching Horror shows on TV!



It’s a case where parents think their children can do anything under the sun! Each and every parent believes that their child was a gifted one- that has been a painter, singer, dancer, scholar, a scientist and many other things in her previous birth. They are not to be blamed. Perhaps I’d be just the same when I have a daughter of my own. But the point is I had no real talent in drawing. I admired the paintings. I admired painters! They are such wonderful people. But me- I was not one of them.

Whatever made me stop going to my drawing classes, I do not remember. They were wonderful teachers. But deep down- I wished that if only I could draw! If only I could paint! What a gift it was to give a shape to whatever that you think! I’m trying to think of so many things. Some of those things just exist in me as just a memory. Something only I’ve seen. If I try to explain a huge iron container with one opening at the top to pour in the rice grains and the other- at the bottom to take rice out of it- I wouldn’t be able to explain it. But if I could draw it…

There are just so many things that one wishes to do. Like kids in school dreaming wild about their future! ‘Doctors’ are so out-of-place. I once heard a 6 year old say that she wants to be an Ornithologist! Why- even I have told so many people- I had always wanted to become a bus conductor! The dreams, these kids soon realize are just inane dreams. In fact, it is worse. They begin to believe that having such dreams is a mark that you have not grown. A grown-up knows what he wants. Ornithology becomes a silly dream that a six year olds mother once dreamt of when she was six!



I have silly dreams. Or rather- dreams that people think as silly. Now that would not qualify me as a grown up! I dream of taking off. Just board a bus and go. Carry nothing else but a pen and few sheets of paper. Take a bus- having no idea about the destination and be off! I wish to spend my days amidst sounds closer to Earth. Croaking of frogs, rustling of leaves, pebbles thrown into water.

Sometimes, there are dreams that I think am not meant to have. Rather- dreams that aren’t like me. In this dream, I reside on the 18th floor of a building. The room has a huge window that gives a terribly beautiful view of the world beyond. And I sit on the edge of the window- smoking. There is rain. But no matter how I try to wet my cigarette- the fire won’t go. And I mock the rain- as I pat off the ash.

Crowded autos to work, black and white monitors, coffee at the cafeteria. But somewhere along this humdrum of reality, I have lost myself to my dreams. And no matter how I try to ‘return’, I still prefer the painting of two men, both tired after a day’s work- playing chess while the light from the oil lantern, lengthens their shadows- far and long…


PS: Images used- my Doodles...

20 comments:

Bedazzled said...

wow! aweseome doodles!you should get back to the classes !

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

Well I could not draw, not even doodle. Rather, I try not to try it now maybe because I could not draw like others when I was smaller.

Maybe now things could be different, if I'd just try. Like you did, they are nice doodles. Art.

Cheers,
Blasphemous Aesthete

Rohini Prasanth said...

Maybe the people who judged your sketches ought to stop watching horror shows. Frankly, they are awesome sketches.
Pencil sketching still remains my fav hobby, although I haven't sought solace in it in a while. Not for lack of materials or thought, just lack of initiative.
I went to classes too - once a week. my parents didn't force me to though, it was a hobby I cultivated on my own which they encouraged. Unfortunately, my sketch book and my fav sketches are in India and I often miss them.
If you are really interested in it, then I think you should pursue it at your own leisure. You definitely have the talent. It is upto you to hone it.
It is not futile to dream. Dreams are like candy - you get to pick and chose which ones to nourish and which ones to let go. :)

Casey Freeland said...

The mystery behind the symbols and letters around the sketches makes them seem deeper than just a sketch. It's cool, and probably a good therapy for you. I say keep it up!

Cheers,

Casey

Alka Gurha said...

Continue dreaming..its wonderful. I used to draw and paint but now its writing....Introspective post.

parul said...

Did you sketch all that?
And you say you were not good?!! I am blushing with embarrassment!
Back in my days, I used to ask the girl who was best in drawing in my class to sketch for me (even if she wanted to with her left hand!), and I would do her maths homework in return! B-)
After I watched Taare Zameen Par however, I grew this notion in my head that I could vent out all my frustrations into a beautiful modern art style painting (needless to say, the notion lasted only till I picked up a blank sheet of paper and found my brain's blankness reflected in it)
Aspirations are a beautiful thing. I have wanted to become so many things throughout the growing years of my life. It's another story altogether that what I became finally had nothing to do with any of them (though traces of all of them remain in the underlying layers :) )
Needless to say, a well written piece. :)

Parul

RamMmm said...

Indeed, nice recollections in a nutshell.

Good that you didn't read Freud for the interpretation of your dreams. :-)

shail said...

I just love your posts.. they touch so close..

Thanks..

Animesh Ganguly said...

rarely do posts qualify as being beautiful... This one surely did.....lovely...

regards

rauf said...

i walk in the rain in the forests but i prefer looking out the window in the city holding a cup of coffee and smoke.

People say i have a good and artistic handwriting. That means i could draw. i can't. There's a mental block which i couldn't get over all my life. Had a very bad drawing teacher, treacherous, sadistic, i hated him. And i hated drawing.

As always your narration is arresting. You can put a better word here Matangs. Something better than arresting.

Matangi Mawley said...

@ bedazzled...

:D hee he! thanks...!

Matangi Mawley said...

@ blasphemous...

just a question of 'mood swings'!

thanks!

Matangi Mawley said...

@ rohini...

:) thanks!

Matangi Mawley said...

@ casey...

:) thanks!

Matangi Mawley said...

@ alka...

thanks!

Matangi Mawley said...

@ parul...

you should drop in to my drawing classes n should hav seen some other sketches by people there... my drawings are like-- way back in the line...

thanks!

Matangi Mawley said...

@ ramm...

i already know wht my dreams mean... :D

Matangi Mawley said...

@ shail...

thanks!

Matangi Mawley said...

@ animesh...

thanks!

Matangi Mawley said...

@ rauf...

yep... teachers do make a huuuuuuuge impact on us! unfortunately, not most of them understand wht they are doing to kids when they do something unpleasant!

thanks!

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