Smriti Choudhary, Graphic Artist – Pinksoda&Airpish

The lady behind Nucleya's #BaseRani cover graphics!

Smriti Choudhary, the founder of Pinksoda and Airphish talks to us about her projects with Nucleya, breaking norms, detailing, Hayako Miyazaki and her new nature-based brand Airphish.

Q1. Tell us everything about ‘how it started’

Smriti: I spent my childhood In Udaipur (Rajasthan), day-dreaming, dancing and drawing most of the time. I always knew I wanted a career in art & design but living in a small city I didn’t know what my options were. When I was around 15 years old, I learnt about National Institute of Design (Ahmedabad) after which I knew exactly where I wanted to be. In 2005, I graduated from NID with a specialisation in Graphic Design and founded my independent design studio ‘Pinksoda’, through which I consult on various national and international brand & communication design projects. As most of my design work required me to sit in front of my computer, I started craving to draw again. Art for me has always been the most important medium to express and to bond with nature. I reconnected with my love for art while I was pregnant, and in 2011 I gave birth to my son Guri as well as my illustration studio – Airphish.  

Q2. How has the journey been so far?

Smriti: I have always chosen my own path and learnt something new with every step. So it has been very exciting and satisfying – exploring, experimenting, learning – that’s how i would like the rest of my journey to be.

Q3. What happened to Pinksoda?

Smriti: Pinksoda became my Alias over the years for all my digital work. I still work on graphic design projects, the most popular being graphics and album covers for Nucleya. Presently, I am working on a couple of selected branding projects. I also experiment with video mashups and did a live performance with Nucleya, Avinash Kumar and Ayaz Busrai at Unbox Festival (Delhi) a few years back. Pinksoda and Airphish, are two completely different sides of my personality.

Q4. Tell us about #Airphish, as a brand?

Smriti: Airphish is an art and design studio striving to rekindle people’s connection with nature through art and handcrafted products. Creating and retailing art that people can touch, hold and even eat on; that becomes a part of people’s homes. Everything at Airphish begins with detailed hand-drawn illustrations and every process involves the human touch – from drawing to transferring each print onto the final product.

Q5. Any upcoming series you’re working upon?

Smriti: I am working on various things simultaneously – an art series dedicated to endangered animals, an embroidery illustration series and also a new tableware collection.

Q6. Particular local or international artists that you love or take inspiration?

Smriti: My biggest inspiration has been Hayako Miyazaki. I love the way nature is idolised and represented in his work. I am a huge fan of Studio Ghibli films. There are many contemporary artists that I admire  – papercut art by Hari and Deepti, sculptures by Ellen Jewett, children’s book illustrations by Teagan White, to name a few.

Q7. Where do you get your creativity inspo?

Smriti: I get inspired by the wonderful design of nature – its symmetry, its details, its vastness, the stars, the oceans and most importantly the beautiful creatures.

Q8. How important is detailing?

Smriti: Detailing is everything in my work. I spend hours and sometimes days on each and every artwork. Even when I am designing the products, there is a lot of work that goes behind every piece and every stage of the process, from sketching out the ideas to the final packaging.

Q9. Words of advice for young graphic artists? 

Smriti: Follow your heart!

Q10. Any #Norm you have broken lately?

Smriti:Does embroidering on paper count? Or using toothbrush to create black and white artworks?

as told to team Norm Mag.

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