Posts in Creativity
The Taj Mahal: How to Wander the Wonder

Honestly, it wasn’t until my fourth visit to India that I visited the Taj Mahal. I was always interested but had been delaying the experience, believing it to be a little overdone, overwhelming and stressful. Having been a few times now I’ve discovered that actually you can never ‘overdo’ the Taj; it has its reputation for a reason! And overwhelming, yes, but in a wonderful can’t-get-enough-of-this-beauty kind of way. As for the stress, it exists, but with a little research and prep it’s totally manageable. Read on for my personal tips and insights…

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Gemstones, Jewels and... Coffee?

While living in Jaipur for a short stint in 2017, this spot soon became my favourite place to hang, drink surprisingly good cappuccinos and do work-kinda things (edit photos, write blogs, plan workshops etc). I think what I most liked about spending time at Curious Life was, alongside their smoothie bowls, chocolate chip cookies and fresh roasted beans, I was captivated by the other people that visited the cafe. With the exception of a few other tourists, this place seemed to attract all of Jaipur’s interesting, beautifully dressed, charismatic local professionals…

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Creative Travel meets Rajasthani Cuisine

From Jaipur’s finest high-end bars to the best and secret local street snacks, delicately spiced regional thali dishes to fresh, hot, masala chai, from dining under the moonlight in Jaipur’s City Palace to sharing samosas among artists on the studio floor, from trying our guide’s favourite sweet dishes to cooking chappathis for the public inside the huge kitchen (langar) of Delhi’s Gurudwara Bangla Sahib… it’s safe to say we filled our bellies with a vast range of insights…

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A Master Class in Miniature Painting

An integral part of the Inspired India 2018 creative yoga trip was a chance to spend a day with India’s award winning artist Sri Ramu Ramdev, learning the art of Indian Miniature Painting from within Jaipur City Palace…

…Miniature Painting is a practical way to experience yoga within painting, through recognisable physical techniques such as breathwork, as well as that subtle devotional quality that resonates throughout the images, the artists and the atmosphere of the studio. Art from the heart…

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Prints for the People the interest of spreading joy and spreading the teachings of yoga, here it is, another little glimpse into the many ways that we can access union, connection and a deeper understanding of the humanity around us. I quickly learnt that the stories I'd imagined about many of these people were not even close to the truth, that their real lives were way more interesting than I could have guessed, and that it wasn't always appropriate for me to share in their experiences. This small project has given me a new perspective to creating portrait images of strangers, a chance to question more deeply what the art is trying to show. It offered a further glimpse into the culture around me, and an increased appetite for exploring the unknown while letting the moment lead the way.

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The Road is Life

So most people know that India is home to an abundance of street-side entrepreneurs, road merchants, travelling salesmen and quick-thinking opportunists.

But still, there are some people that take that up to a whole new level.

Tattoos in the traffic, dentists in an open air office, taxes completed on the ground in the shade. The really crazy thing though is I'm starting to get so used to this way of life that I now often forget to take photos; forget to take a visual reminder of these situations that are such a novelty when compared with our structured way of thinking. Our habit of sticking to the rules. But sometimes I do remember to document this lifestyle, and so let me share a couple of insights with you here.

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The Art of the Line

The Art of the Line is another name for Indian Painting as the line work is the most essential characteristic of the art. It is a smooth, elegant, flowing line that becomes emotive as it takes on the characteristic of each form in the image. A balance of force and flow, applied with delicacy and deliberation. The most effective way of learning how to paint this way is to spend time with one who has already mastered the technique, and then do as they do in order to try and experience what they experience.

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Patience and the Paint Makers: Mountain Stones

The first secret of Indian Miniature Painting? A little of the magic comes directly from the rare gemstones and minerals that make up the paint in the image.

To fully appreciate this art-form, it is essential to understand the great care that goes into the preparation and creation of all components of the painting. Everything is sourced organically and made by hand, and each part of the process is of equal importance to the artist. Before any painting can commence, the rigorous and careful ritual of paint making must occur, and this is what we're looking at in some detail here.

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