Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Presenting Shalaka Kalyanpur!!

Barbara and Deb: Yesterday we promised we’d share with you the amazing artwork that our regular reader and commenter, Shalaka, created for us and which she presented to us over Skype and email on April 1st to celebrate our 2-year blogiversary!!  Needless to say, Deb and I were gobsmacked. And deeply touched. And absolutely floored. This girl is brilliant. We predict an amazing career ahead of her.

Shalaka told us that she started painting as a young girl and kept changing mediums, even trying fabric painting when she was a young adolescent. Now her medium of choice is the digital pallet of Photoshop. She explained to us that she uses a photograph as a template, “cutting” out the basic shapes and then digitally layering on all the colours and lines until she is satisfied. She said each painting usually takes her a few weeks to complete.

Shalaka asked us for a few photos from which she could choose to paint—one of Deb and I together and one of Colin—which I emailed her a few months ago. The painting of Phil was a total surprise for me—she used a photo off one of our older blog posts. One of the reasons she wanted to present the paintings over Skype was so she could see our faces during the reveal. I don’t think she was disappointed as we literally gasped in awe as we looked at them. The painting of Phil--which is of him goofing off during a ski holiday that we took with Deb and Colin--makes me laugh every time I look at it (which is a lot!).

Now keep in mind that this talented Mumbai-based artist is only 19-years-old! Thank you so very much, Shalaka. We love them and we love you!!



PS If you have any questions for Shalaka, I’m sure she’d be happy to answer them in our comments section.

55 comments:

  1. wow Shalaka these are truly amazing!!! Simply beautiful!!! Can you explain how you do them? Also wonderful of all the subjects. What treasures! You are extremely talented.....

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    1. Awww thanks Mary-Jo....that is really sweet....

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  2. :O My jaw is on the floor!

    SHALAKA!!!!! WWWWOOOOWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    *stares some more*
    *says WOW a bunch more times*

    WOW

    Shalaka = talent!!!

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    1. Aww Rigel....!!! I was very excited to hear what YOU had to say...as youve always been so supportive.....Awww
      Thanks thanks thanks !!! Love you...!

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  3. OH YOU GIRLS....! I am so flattered....and honoured....and CRYING !!! AND HAPPY!!
    This is very ...I am so.....*sigh* awwww you get it right ???
    I knew Phil's painting would surprise you !! Oh yeah and I think you accidentally wrote ILLUSTRATOR....I work on Photoshop...I do love illustrator though :P
    Thanks so so very much for this....!!!! I love you BOTH SO MUCH *tackle-hug*
    and yeah ..I would love to answer any questions....
    And Deb and Barb's (and Stefanie's) expressions were PRICELESS !!!!

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    1. Oops, sorry, sweetie. I was taking notes as you were describing your process and I have "Illustrator" in them. My bad. I've changed it in the text to Photoshop. Let me know if that's phrased right.

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    2. Aww honey thats ok !...yeah its PERFECT....!! I just said coz...Photoshop is my darling.....if it read Adobe Illustrator It might feel a little jealous ;)..and we dont want THAT now do we ? XD

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  4. That is amazing. Oh wow. Just wow is the only word that comes to mind

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  5. Mary-Jo I paint on Photoshop,
    First, I take the reference and there is this feature in photoshop called 'layers'...I take a layer and start marking the border of the subject if you will...and fill is with an opaque colour that is widely found on the subject......mostly the "midtone" which is not where the light hits or were shadows fall....
    Then I start painting the shadows....the reference is beneath the layer so I turn the reference on to pick the colours and to make sure I paint them correctly !
    I keep on adding layers...first paint the shadows....then go to subtle highlights...
    then slowly start off with the detailing...
    And generally after the painting is 30%-40% complete...I just trust my instincts and paint it....
    You wanna know more ??? anything more specific ?

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  6. Oh my! That's just... amazing! Photoshop you say? WOW... ok that's all I can say, just WOW!

    Truly blessed with talent you are Shalaka.

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  7. Aww Sheyla thanks !!! I'm Flattered !!!!

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  8. You indeed have a talent! I remember once or twice having dabbled with Photoshop and remember always loosing my mind because I just couldn't make it do what I wanted. I can make things dissapear but you'll know where I've done it because of the spots (if ya know what I mean). Yes I lack patience with these kind of things... What can I say? Colour me green... :D

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    1. Aww thanks Kasku....btw love the name !! Patience plays an important part....But believe it or not...I was a little irritated by the pen tool...(you probably know it)...but when I was studying illustrator I just spend some time with it....and now.....It feels natural !!!! Everyone has atleast one subject they are AWESOME at......this one's mine :D

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    2. Oh, yes I remember it. Oh the fun memories when with one wrong click things just went (want to say hey wire, but not sure if it means anything so going with) wrong. :)) So kudos for you to have had the patience to practice with it.

      And thank you! It is indeed a cool nick. I think it describes me perfectly! (In english it is an anecdote, well synonym for it anyway). I am awesome at making pancakes if you ask my niece :)

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    3. AWW...PANCAKES ??? CAN I COME ??? I SUCK AT COOKING...more like I despise it XD.....
      I know pen tool can be a BITCH......!!

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    4. I'll be making some for my niece's 6th bday party this weekend. You are most welcomed to join us :)) You'll get a chance to taste some Karelian pasties as well (that are done by me too).

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    5. Oh thats it...!!! I'm moving in with you !!!! :D I LOVE FOOD....AND anyone who's a PRO in creating it (LOVE YOU... Barb and ....Colin..XD)

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    6. Just rememberd that I forgot to mention, that if you are looking for a place to share your work and receive comments from other artist (some similar to you and others doing by hand) you might want to check out deviantart.com. I am following few artist myself there, so I know it but don't really use it.

      And little confession is in place... I can cook but it might not taste very good. I like to follow the recepies and sometimes add extra (not always a good idea) :)

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    7. Aww thanks so uch...I knew deviantart as a website....in fact get a lotta brushes from there...I didnt know this though...thanks !

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  9. Very nicely done! Definitely beyond my own skill set. Really quite lovely.

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  10. Shalaka, absolutely fantastic!!!!!!!!! You are SO talented! Just...wow!!!
    And you are only 19?!?! Oh my....At first, I thought the ladies had posted pictures to compare your paintings to, then I looked close and realizes those WERE your paintings. So amazing, girl!!!
    Keep up the fantastic work!!! xo
    ;)

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    1. Awwwww....thanks Steph !!!!! xoxoxo

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  11. I love these. So you don't actually touch real brushes or paint right? I paint with acrylic and I don't understand this process at all but these sure look fabulous. Do you print them on canvas so they look more like a painted piece? Is the photo underneath so you get all the fine details like lines in the face too? I have never done photoshop or iPhone apps or anything like this. All I know is it looks real but I understand it is all digital and not real paint/brush technique. Very interesting and lifelike for sure. Amazing Shalaka.

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    1. Yeah Madge...I dont actually use brushes....Photoshop is very easy...compared to actual painting... especially acrylics...Ive painted with acrylic colours..they are just gorgeous...and give a wonderful feel to the paintings yet really tough to work with as I guess you cant dilute them right ?....
      Yes the photo is underneath the layers so I get the details perfectly.....especially when its a face painting I make sure every detail is captured as even if you miss a HAIR...the painting looks completely different....in fact with these when I was painting Phil's eyebrows....I missed one hair..ONE HAIR....and checked to see how it looked and it looked so completely different......
      Yes its all digital.... technically it is like painting though...in this rather than using a PALLET...you use a TABLET....thats all...and honestly its so so much easier to paint this way than painting on a canvas with real brushes coz...here my little 'undo' key comes in handy so many times...! and thanks for your kind words...Its so flattering when an Artist says 'you are good at painting' :)

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    2. Shalaka - I am amazed and impressed that is so cool! Kudos to you what talent.

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    3. Thanks Mary...I'm flattered!!!! xo

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    4. Thanks for explaining. Do you then print it on some type of paper or canvas to actually give it to someone? Fascinating stuff. Thanks for sharing.

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    5. Not really...I mean I'd do it if anyone requested...but noone ever did so :P I used to print out my pencil sketches....Aww thanks :)

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  12. Holy Moly!!! They are great Shalaka!!!

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    1. Aww Thanks Kelly....I loved painting them too :)

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  13. Simply amazing! What a beautiful job you did. I have to admit I'm quite envious of people who can create visual art. It is a talent I have absolutly no skill in, but I love to look at what others can do. Shalaka, you have an incredible talent. Best of luck to you in all your future artistic projects. Keep creating!!!

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    1. Awww Molly thats is so sweet....thanks....for your kind words and wonderful wishes...!

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  14. Sharon ( AllComputerThumbs) ReineApril 3, 2012 at 3:51 PM

    Congrats Shalaka on a truly inspiring tribute between good friends!
    My computer is too limited to even try Photoshop (6+ yrs old and only 1 g memory) so I'm always amazed at the skill sets the computer savy can develop and how creatively they can use them.
    Lovely!

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    1. Aww thanks.....I know....you need atleast 2gb ram for using Photoshop...I work with a lotta softwares and I have a 4gb ram.....still sometimes its not enough !!
      Yeah Deb and Barb are my angels....! This was just a small gesture to thank them for coming in my Life !xoxo

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  15. You guys I have just now had time to sit down and read all the comments. You have all been so complimentary to Shalaka and her fabulous work. I enjoyed the conversation between Madge and Shalaka about the technicality of each of your individual art!

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    1. I know Deb I loved it too...especially because Madge so much more experienced than me...and I have no doubt that she is a fabulous artist...a (painting with acrylics..NOT EASY)....I appreciate her willingness to talk about this !! And I always love talking about the comparison between the two....coz its almost always the same technique but with different mediums!!

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  16. Go Shalaka!

    I'm so glad Madge asked what she did because I study Baroque and eighteenth cenutry French art, so I was completely stumped as to how this works! I'm stuck in a time zone centuries old compared to what you've just done :) But this is super cool! You must have a really good understanding of shading and colourwork if you can do something like this... awesome!

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    1. OH MY GOD, ARE YOU SERIOUS...???? Baroque and eighteenth century French art........??!?!??!?!!! Thats is AWESOME...!!!! you just provided me with some more topics to paint. thanks :)...
      I think painting in that traditional way has a different fun to it....you need to have real patience with that......this is just a refinement ! Oh IDK about really good understanding.....but definitely getting better and I am good at the basics as I studied Sketching (mostly anatomical) for about a year.....did it for something else but I dropped that plan.....but the year long study stayed with me !!!!

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    2. Oh and thanks !!!!!!
      PS I still remember the scrub recipe you asked for....My moms been busy lately...I'll let you know the moment I get it !xoxo

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    3. Glad I could accidentally help with ideas! In return, I'd love to get photoshop one day and have a play and see what your kind of work is like :)
      No rush, and thanks heaps!!

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  17. Shalaka, that is utterly amazing!! You are so talented!! I can really see the detail on my laptop. Wow! The extent of my talent is just doing calligraphy...

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    1. Aww thanks Jo...I'm always fascinated my calligraphy.....tried a little bit when I wrote "LOVE YOU" on the paintings.....did work out XD lol
      And I hope your Moms doing well now...I am sending a lotta love and healing thoughts :)

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  18. Wait....what? These are PAINTINGS??!?!?!? I thought these were photos!

    NICE!!! :)

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  19. And you're 19???!?!? Wow. You are so much more wise than many 19-year-olds that I know! Good for you! :)

    P.S. Not far off from you...turning 22 on Monday the 9th! :D

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    1. AWWWW THAT IS SO SWEET !!!!! Not bragging but a lotta people on facebook thought these were photos too...then Barb explained that THEY AREN'T !!!

      Yup.....19....lol Wise...my Mom wouldnt agree with that.....
      I KNOW 22 on monday huh ???? have a lotttta fun.... I turn 20 this August 16th !!!!

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  20. Awww...I've already seen the Deb/Barbara pic on FB...They are soooo awesome!
    At first I thought, they were photographs, too...but then I realized you painted that!

    You're 19?
    WOW, I thought you were older. *haha* Sorry! :D

    P.S. I always read Shakalaka instead of Shalaka. I'm sorry!

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    1. Aww Thanks !! lol yeah....I get that a lot..the being older thing and the Shakalaka thing...lol no I dont mind...!!! thats ok :) its sweet really..

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  21. Wow!!! I honestly thought they were photos at first. Absolutely incredible! So very life-like! Oh, how I wish I had a talent like yours! :)

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