Art and craft have been an integral part of my life since childhood. I have always been a typography enthusiast and painting florals never fail to fill me up with joy.
Once I took my brother's old shoes and started painting on them on a random afternoon. He had almost decided to discard them, but that's when I picked them up, thinking to give it a shot at customisation along with painting. So I started my work and by the end of it, when my brother saw the final piece, he decided to wear the shoes again and uses them to date.
'Upcycling Is A Fun Process'
This concept struck a chord within me that day. I understood that if I can give a makeover to certain things, which is indeed a fun process, they'll be of use again and what better than returning the utility and value to something that is about to lose its value.
I wanted to share my work with the world and that's how 'Caught in Colours' came into existence on Instagram. After a while, I started customising diaries, notebooks, bookmarks, and name tags and designed a couple of calendars too. However, during the COVID-19 lockdown, I started to sharpen my skills.
For almost a year, I have been trying my hands at upcycling things such as shoes, tote bags, t-shirts etc. Customisation plays a pivotal part in most of my works.
Contribution Towards Environment
Upcycling is neither a new concept nor a complex one. It promotes the 3Rs ( Reuse, Reduce, Recycle); the point is to Reuse the things that are still of use, Recycle things that can be made of use and help Reduce waste. In addition, such practices are always beneficial for a society as they help sustainable development, keeping in mind that we have limited resources and must use them wisely.
I see upcycling as an opportunity to give a makeover to old stuff, restore its value, and have lots of fun along the process.
"The famous saying, "One person's trash is another one's treasure", is so true. Transforming anything old, used and unwanted into a new and valuable material brings immense joy. Besides, there is one satisfaction that nothing ends up in the landfill. I believe we all have become way too aware about using resources and conscious of waste.
Transforming Things Present Around You
I have taken workshops for doodling on old coffee mugs and fabric painting on old t-shirts and jeans. I want to normalise upcycling, especially in the world where " ring out the old, ring in the new " is so common with quick fashion trends, fast food and our boredom with most material things.
I always consider how much energy and investment in the product take? Is it really a waste material? What is the social and environmental benefit of this creation? How much did I extend the life of the material? and lastly, Am I living as an example?
With respect to art and upcycling, I soon plan to start working on jeans, i.e. paint on old jeans to give them a new look. Most of us throw away our old jeans just because they're "out of fashion". But they can be customised into something trendy and unique. I aim to take those pitiful pairs of pants and turn them into something worth keeping.
My message to the readers is, 'Think twice before throwing something out. A little creativity, enthusiasm and art supplies can transform your things around."
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