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To be a success story, one needs to dedicate and devote two hundred percent from your heart and of course, be blissful at heart. Alicia Souza is one such example to know about and be inspired from.

Alicia Souza

Sometimes, things don’t move as they are planned. Whatever has to happen, happens and there is definitely something good in it. So is the case with Alicia Souza.

The Inception

The reason she started illustrating as a freelancer was because she needed to pay rent. She feels like she didn’t intentionally get into the place that she is in today but rather fell into it with circumstances at hand and the choices she made. Alicia moved to India to illustrate and her style evolved into the style she uses primarily today. Setting up the online store came after massive demands started flowing in for it.

Launching her own studio, Aliciasouzastudio has been her biggest responsibility. Even after time constraints restricting her from visiting the studio often, she makes sure to communicate with her wonderful team working there through instant messages and collates information via spreadsheets. She also has a partner taking care of the studio.

Fate and Fortune

Alicia is one lucky person to have destiny on her side! She didn’t set out to establish her brand with competition in mind, she started it because there was a need and she wanted to fulfill that.

 

The basic idea of starting out, let her live without any competition pressure and keeps her grounded because she is true to her work and does not look in any other direction than her own path. She believed in herself and her work, and considered it as a case of ‘I’ll take this as far as it will go’ and it’s still going!

A liking for funny characters and a special love for drawing cartoons seems to have just seeped into her work. From drawing many different characters in the past, Alicia now prefers telling stories and incidents via the ones that imitate her life in a way. Whether that character be her husband or her cute little dog go, she converses with those characters in her own style

Promotional Planning

Alicia feels that it is important to market oneself and these days with the choices of avenues available for marketing, it sometimes becomes confusing to decide the one which would do maximum justice to the promotional work.

 

She chose the platforms of Facebook and Instagram to promote her work as she felt the most comfortable using them and she knew she was going to stick to them. Also, she tried some other ways of promoting her brand and they too proved to be successful for her like Amazon, Happy Wagon, a retail and online store founded by aliciasouzastudio as well. She also has an online store on Etsy.com under the name, ‘Alicia Souza UK’ which is handled by a team based in the UK.

Alicia does not have a success mantra, but she firmly believes in the concept of trial and error. She does not follow trends, instead does what makes her smile and hopes that it will get a smile on other faces as well!

 

From her experience, Alicia suggests not to over-think, to work hard, be humble and enjoy the process.

Issue 44 - Creative Gaga

Published in Issue 44

Behind every successful studio, artist or designer there are stories of challenges, struggles and their unique solutions to these. With this issue, we interviewed many well-known names from the creative industry and found their different learnings and experiences behind making their own self as a brand. Though they all have a different take on this topic, still they all unanimously emphasise on focusing on their skills and quality delivery of the final outcome. So, if you are looking to establish yourself as a brand in the creative market or already in the process of it, this issue is a must read. Full of insights and inspirations from the best of the talents, this issue is waiting to reach your desks.

 

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Creative Gaga - Issue 48
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Sachin Puthran was there when it all happened. It was 1995; the time of hand-drawn illustrations, airbrushed finished images and cut-paste typesetting. Digital was slowly coming in, bringing with it a generation gap. There was an air of fear in the older Art Directors as the younger generation, fascinated by Mac user interface, was already learning software. Below, he takes us on the journey of an Artist, from then to now.

Art From Pencil to Stylus
The Yakshangana Performer

The Analog Age

The earlier generation was blessed with the passion and experience of using the tactile medium. It gave the true satisfaction of working on various surfaces using different media and styles. Everybody knows art back then was a luxury, a rich passion. “It was larger than life,” says Sachin “where expressions were a physical manifestation of the artist’s vision. People travelled to view art in public spaces. Getting to see and meet the artist was truly an experience of joy and inspiration. Nothing came easy.”

Art From Pencil to Stylus
The Coconut Tree

Art for Art’s Sake

According to Sachin, traditional artists still swear by the smell, the touch and the feel of the traditional medium. That’s because they seemed to have understood the sensitivity and developed a purist approach to Art. They were the ones who stuck to the medium and rejected the so-called ‘digital medium’ that was going to take them by surprise in a few years. But the fear had set in.

Art From Pencil to Stylus
Waiting

 The Advent of Computers

The arrival of first generation computers in the early 90s opened a Pandora’s box for visual artists to explore the slow but responsive medium. Reminiscing about those days. Softwares were slowly heading towards capturing the artist’s imagination. Suddenly the advantages and disadvantages of painting digitally were getting clearer. The needs and demands of clients started changing fast. For the first time, the clock was ticking digitally. Everything that was wanted tomorrow was being delivered today.

Art From Pencil to Stylus
Ramanuj

The Magic of Cinema

This was the time when technology was ahead of its users. Hollywood started using high-end Visual Effects or VFX and changed the art of storytelling. “There was only a thin line of difference between science fiction and realism. Software and hardware could now do magic. The Internet made downloading a popular new phenomenon. Suddenly there was a paradigm shift.” During that period, the world was changing and not everybody was able to keep up with it.

Art From Pencil to Stylus
Work in progress Mumbai

The New Millennium Generation

A creative visualising power was not enough to survive in this era. Art Directors were required to know paint and design software as well. That’s how visual grammar changed over the years, as designers incorporated photo manipulation techniques and digital retouching to create surreal imagery. “Every software upgrade brought in more features and capabilities,” says Sachin, “so much so that one day, artists were lost and filters were in.”

Art From Pencil to Stylus
JijamataUdyan Mumbai

More Clutter

The designer was engulfed by the software in the next few years, as they relied more on software and less on their skills. “Ideas were driven by styles that were possible quickly on digital. Tactile sensitivity was lost and the rat race had truly begun.” Sachin tells us. “Social media added to the confusion, as it allowed designs to be circulated and critiqued by everybody.”

Art From Pencil to Stylus
Indian Wedding

Art gets Interactive

Slowly, design in digital was opening out and was exploring new ways of touching people. The design didn’t just involve the designer, but his audience as well. New media and installation art were new storytelling techniques. Tagging and annotating gave new dimensions to Art. “Suddenly so much more could be done.” He adds.

Art From Pencil to Stylus
Waiting

The Birth of the New Artist

“Equipped now with the latest gadgets, the artist was truly getting the best.” says Sachin. iPads and ‘apps’ for almost anything you wanted to do; from calligraphy to typography, were a finger click away. Everything was on the ‘cloud’ and the artist was now ‘virtual’.

Art From Pencil to Stylus
Daily Hard Work

So, Where Next?

Now is the time to think beyond. If you can imagine it, you can create it. There are endless possibilities and that should keep us all busy for a long time. But the trick today is to be open to the world and yet always do your own thing.

Published in Issue 20

Pencil or stylus? Paper or touch screen? This is just a start to the long list of questions that are swimming in every designer’s mind today. They say change is the only constant but has digitalisation really taken over the traditional methods? Would there be a time when the pencil will be forgotten forever like writers have forgotten a fountain pen?


We discuss the issue with famous Indian designers and try to understand what they think. This issue also has some very talented and unique designer like Sachin Puthran, Raghava KK, Ramanjeet Kaur and Pavan Rajurkar got featured along with much more. Mr. Xerty and Amrei Hofstatter came with unique interpretation in our MadeIn section.

 

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CURRENT ISSUE
Creative Gaga - Issue 48
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