Irrespective of the field they belong to, young entrepreneurs of Kashmir are finding new ways to turn their passion into art. With each passing day, youngsters in Kashmir are venturing into different fields and turning into self-taught home bakers, artists, designers, and whatnot.
As the field of art is emerging in Kashmir, young girls aided with online platforms are taking their passion for art and turning it into business opportunities.
Faika Fareed Khan, a young engineer from Anantnag is trying to realise her dream of art and is successfully turning it into a business opportunity.
She says that being passionate about art since her school days she never thought of taking it up professionally but as the covid crippled the world, Faika found solace and an entrepreneurship opportunity in art.
“As everyone knows, art is therapeutic. It not only helps you to keep yourself busy but also adds to your happiness. If the same is taken up professionally, one can easily turn it into a business opportunity. Platforms like Youtube are making one learn things practically and I did the same. I consulted YouTube videos and other online tutorials to chisel my art so that I can take it professionally,” Faika said.
As the world was stuck in COVID, Faika tried to find an entrepreneurship opportunity at a time when it was least expected. She said doing something productive was the best thing those days as everyone was depressed and stuck at home.
“I didn’t want to sit back and do nothing, that is why I tried my hand at art. Being from an engineering background it was hard for me to make my way through it. As I was passionate about art and used to paint as a hobby that helped me a lot. Initially, it was hard to get raw materials and equipment for my painting but as things got better I found my way out. I believe if you are focused on something and you have the passion to do it, you will find a way out,” she said
Faika says that she took inspiration from various artists and followed their art online which made things easy for her. She says that she wanted to move beyond calligraphy and portrait art and tried to put forth box ideas with a contemporary touch.
“In recent years a lot of portrait and calligraphy artists have emerged in Kashmir. I wanted to do something different, something that I will be good at and something that will appeal to a different base of customers and art lovers,” Faika said.
As most the artists are focused on portrait and calligraphy, Faika is attracting her clients with her beautiful landscape art, Miniature, and decorative art pieces. Her still paintings have a separate customer base. She says that she tries to innovate with each passing day and go beyond the traditional art forms.
Faika’s art pieces made from Acrylic colours, Gouache colours, her mini canvases, mini diaries, and polaroid art are a treat to the eyes. She says that she always keeps the customers ahead and tries to innovate.
“These art pieces are memories to my clients and it is important I keep that in mind while creating art. At times the customers want to preserve a particular piece of their memory like a photograph and turn it into art, I cater to that demand of customers and help them in recreating these memories. I am trying to customize my art as per the requirement of the customers so that it will keep them interested in the work I do. I believe if one does justice to what they do and follow professionalism, they will succeed despite challenges,”
Faika is trying a new way to introduce art into daily life. She recently created very popular art bookmarks and several customers ordered the same for her.
“There are many people who are avid book readers, for such people I created customized bookmarks with different themes. In the same way, I am introducing art décor on wood planks. Some people are into such innovative forms of art and I try to customize as per their choices,” she added.
She says that social media platforms and using the new trends of branding have helped her to connect to people. Faika opened her Instagram account (art_by_faika_) and says that many customers are reaching out to her via social media and placing orders.
“Initially I was just learning and had not made my venture public. I wanted to do justice to my art and as I felt that I was ready to take orders, I opened my Instagram account to reach out to people. Initially, my known people placed orders and then through word of mouth and social media others also reached out and appreciated the art,” she said.
Faika has tied up with various delivery services to deliver her art orders. She says that the online mode of payment has made it easy for young girls like her to do their job remotely.
Faika says that her parents, siblings, and other friends encouraged her and that helped her to grow despite the odds.
Faika, who is a full-time It professional, says that in a time when people are striving hard for government jobs, a lot of entrepreneurship opportunities are missed. She believes that youngsters, especially girls, can be job providers rather than seekers.
She said that online tools have helped people in doing their jobs and carrying out business from home. Faika says that she is still learning and trying to add new art forms like oil painting and other art forms to her art.
She believes that young women can turn their hobbies into entrepreneurship opportunities through hard work and professionalism.