Mentors & Muses

living room, ravi varma print, india

Mentors  are invaluable, especially  when one is starting a career with  no formal training.   Mentors can support, guide, help you set goals, boost confidence & are essential to growth in any career. When I made an entry into the world of interior design from a career in  the media,  I didn’t have the wisdom or the guidance to help find the right mentors. Somewhere  mid way into the career, I tried with little success to find the right guides and then just let go when I couldn’t.  Today,  as I sit at my desk  sharing space with literature on conservation, hand rendering & textile,  brochures of  ceramic ware &  lime-wash,  samples of stone & tile and another laptop that’s rendering files for a project in Bangalore,  I  realise that any success in this field  would  have been a definite challenge  on my efforts alone. I see now that my mentors did appear along the path, just not in  the  avatars I expected. They came in  the form of  colleagues, friends, family, online forums and  even as clients. Some of my first clients- older women with a strong sense of individual style-  were  most encouraging of my early efforts and generous with sharing their sources and in-depth knowledge of the arts. Other clients taught me  patience &  kindness through example while yet others, passionate about their hobbies, piqued my interest in a range of new subjects. My muses on the other hand were easy to identify and have remained consistent–  the beauty of  the outdoors, the untamed splendour & simplicity of the rural landscape in India, the spirit of calm within the chaos of urban India and even the personal, elegant style of a client or colleague. These pictures offer a glimpse of the work done for clients I’ve learned from and the inspiration behind projects.


Photograph of birds by: Radhika Bharghava

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