My earliest memories are that of a very self-explorative, reflective childhood and I was always eager to explore the possibilities of self-expression and communication, especially on a public platform. That, I believe, set me on the path of exploring art in many forms.
Personal high point
I am a very driven person. Most things in my personal life revolve around my passion for art and things associated with it. I feel that my first, real personal high point was back in 2002 at NIFT, Hyderabad, where, despite innumerable and seemingly insurmountable odds, I walked away with the award for ‘Most Creative Design Collection’.
In 2007, I was invited by Lakme Fashion Week to showcase my design collection as part of the ‘Generation Next’ show (it used to be just five designers per season, back then). I was the only one from Delhi to be invited.
There has never been one person in particular that has inspired me. Having said that, I have drawn inspiration from the qualities of various people who have acted like driving forces and helped me achieve personal and professional goals, big and small.
Dedication to art
I practice and preach values that dictate that art must come naturally and one should never forcibly pick up the brush. I am a self-taught artist. I am able to perceive a lot of things through my personal expression and drive for art. Though I’ve been trained as a fashion designer, I look at everything with an artist’s eye. Hence, be it garments, writing about fashion, painting, or any other thing, I live art. The time I spend on art is not quantifiable.
I would say that focus is the key to success. Probing into one’s being and discovering one’s own niche is the supreme goal.
I feel a wonderful, positive lift due to my penchant for art. It’s a beautiful and fulfilling feeling to be able to create a canvas. I enjoy the entire creative process.
Nida Mahmood, fashion designer Interviewed by Pankaj Mullick