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Chaaya Prabhat

Chaaya Prabhat

Meet illustrator and graphic designer from Chennai, Chaaya Prabhat.

 

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

My name is Chaaya Prabhat and I’m an illustrator and graphic designer based in Chennai, India. After getting my M.A in Graphic Design from the Savannah College of Art and Design and working in Hong Kong for a couple of years, I’ve moved back to Chennai and have been freelancing independently.

 

Describe the city you’re living in and what it’s like to live there.

I’m based in Chennai, which is a city in the south of India. It’s steeped in culture and great food but the most defining quality of Chennai is the inexorable heat. However, the beaches here make it better!

 

Give us 3 words that describe what it’s like to be a creative in your city.

Challenging, sweaty, rewarding.

 

How did you start your career in art?

I’ve been drawing since a very young age and it’s always been clear to me that I’ve wanted to pursue a career in art since I’ve never been particularly good at anything else. My passion for art slowly turned into an interest in design in general and eventually turned into my career in graphic design and illustration.

 

My passion for art slowly turned into an interest in design in general and eventually turned into my career in graphic design and illustration.

Were the people around you supportive of your decision on working as a creative?

For the most part, they were, although this is not always the case for people in this country who choose to pursue creative careers – I’ve just been lucky in this sense.

 

What are some goals and ambitions you have for your future work?

At the moment I’m just focusing on doing what I like doing and taking it one day at a time – I’m getting a lot of great projects and I would love for this to continue. This is a field that keeps changing with time so I don’t really want to have a concrete goal, I’ll just see what happens and go with it.

 

At the moment I’m just focusing on doing what I like doing and taking it one day at a time

 

If you could collaborate with any person in the world who would it be?
There are so many artists, dead and alive that I would love to watch and learn from. I don’t necessarily feel the need to collaborate – watching and learning would suffice!

 

How would you describe the women around you?

There’s no one word or phrase to describe the women around me. Like women everywhere, they’re completely different in their own ways. In that sense, maybe a good word to describe the women around me (or anywhere) would be diverse because there is no common defining trait – which is a good thing!

 

Were there any local female creatives that you looked up to when you were growing up?

Unfortunately, there were not a lot of local female creatives that I could look up to while growing up – especially since the field of design and illustration is, I think, fairly new. But this is becoming a popular career option now so I’m sure a lot of young girls would have different answers to this question today.

 

In the recent wave of MeToo it’s come as quite a rude shock to a lot of creatives in this field that rampant sexism and harassment of women very much exist

 

Are there any challenging aspects of being a female in your industry?
Luckily, I haven’t faced a whole lot of discrimination in terms of gender personally – probably because I’m a freelancer and people tend to judge my work and its visual quality and not the person behind it. But of course I cannot speak for everybody in the industry – in the recent wave of MeToo it’s come as quite a rude shock to a lot of creatives in this field that rampant sexism and harassment of women very much exist. Hopefully, now that this is out of the woodworks, it will get better.

 

Do you have any advice to young women who are aspiring to work in your field?

I really wish I had something wise and intelligent to say, but I’m still learning every day and I don’t think I’m in a position to give out advice!

 

 

Photos courtesy of Chaaya Prabhat.

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