Foraging up the hill
By Jag Lall, May 23 2015 05:11PM
Well it's coming up to the end of the month and what a month!
I have been thinking a lot about my art recently, where it may lead and where my choices and dreams will take me. Sometimes the road can be rather precarious, frustrating yet also absolutely enriching all at the same time. I have learnt to embrace the climb because the inner self, the soul knows the way even if our mind is unsure. I think when one strives to be the best that they can and gives their heart to make their dreams come true, the universe will weave in your melody.
Ever since the Vaisakhi London City Hall exhibition I realised I need to promote myself more and I have certainly been doing that. This month I travelled up to Bradford and finally got to view the Hola Mahalla exhibition personally. I was commissioned to paint a canvas depicting the festival and I was impressed by the photography and other artworks on display there.
Through the kindness of those at Isra Books and the Bradford Literary Festival, I was given a place to stay overnight and enjoyed the Qaawali concert on show at Kala Sangam where I drew live ink sketches of the group performing. This was one of the few times I have sketched a live performance and it was my first time using a Japanese brush pen. I like to challenge myself using new tools and trying different ways to improve my craft. Afterwards I met the singers and gave them the sketches to keep, their smiles and heartfelt happiness with the sketches made the long trip up to Bradford well worth it.
Through this artistic journey of my life I have honed in on keeping with my comic art, I have worked on some submission artwork, working with a brush has just fit me like a glove. Being able to be fluid, brisk yet also clean and convey the panels with clarity has been something I have been trying to achieve for a very long time and I think I am finally on the right road in that regard. I am currently up to page 16 of my graphic novel, it has been a delicate process because of the hard hitting subject matter of the story. At times, even for me it has been quite unnerving and difficult to draw, lots of emotions will be prevalent with this new book of mine. I also realised I have made the book a little long in terms of its message.
The book will be much closer to 40 pages now, instead of the 60+ I was originally planning for. I think one of the reasons my first book, 'Death's Door' had such impact was because I kept the narrative concise and pinpoint. So I am going to continue in that vein to bring forward the narrative to the reader quickly. Over the next few months I will be putting out promos, exact details of the graphic novel and preview pages too. I have high hopes that this book will reach out and make a big positive difference as well as raise awareness for discussion.
On a somewhat negative note, it was called to my attention that my 'Life Brother' painting (Guru Gobind Singh leaning on his horse) had being edited with some random website put on top giving a wrong credit on social media. I was very dismayed to see this, quite clearly I have to copyright everything I put online. It was a lesson learned for me and I do kindly ask anyone who wishes to share my artwork to please credit me/my website (jaglallart.com) and to not put any other website on my art without asking permission first. Also if you see anyone sharing artwork without the proper credit please do notify me.
Lastly, I just recently came up with the idea of illustrating a 4 minute sketch for a donation made towards helping those in Nepal. This will last until 20th June. Once you make your donation, just contact me with your photo to sketch and donation confirmation. You can make donation here: https://www.justgiving.com/unitedsikhs