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The winter season finds a new lease of life in festive celebratory hues that contrast the changing colours of nature. Flowers and floral elements, quintessential to celebration, festoon the landscape in a vibrant, spirited avatar.
In this issue of Colour Quotient we explore the colour stories of Festive Floral through conversations with two professionals representing two unique creative practices based in India—Vishesh Verma (an independent photographer), and Pavitra Rajaram (Pavitra Rajaram Design). Inspired by the issue theme colour (Red Alert–X124), they share their colour interpretations of Festive Floral. In ‘Spirit of Festive Floral’ and ‘Colour Inspiration’, each practitioner shares their interpretation of the theme and presents a custom colour palette for the same. In the section ‘Showcase’, each practitioner delves into their folio of work, and shares an instance of contemporary work that represents the qualities of Festive Floral.
Vishesh Verma graduated as a graphic designer from National Institute of Design, India, and soon after, worked towards becoming a fashion photographer. Fast becoming an acclaimed international photographer, he has worked for clients abroad, shooting in locations such as the Middle East, South-east Asia, United States, Europe, Hong Kong, Africa, Egypt, and Maldives. Listed on national television as the youngest of India’s Top Ten fashion photographers, his work in advertising and editorial grow along with his fashion work.
For me (like many other visual artists) the colours of nature are a constant inspiration and the floral world is a source of visual delight. I have a strong preference for light pastel shades and am constantly controlling the palette of my pictures so they head the way the job suits it. Flowers, with the way they grow and spread-out are perfect for when I want to ‘paint-in’ a particular section of my composition with a swathe of colour.
I am a lover of both the natural and the manmade. These two worlds collide in my head and lead to unpredictable colours. I like to combine a shade that occurs in nature with an absolute acidic, plastic, almost fluorescent colour. And I love the way that contradiction serves me visually. My favourite play of colour has always been one of strong contradiction and at the base of that lies my equal enjoyment of a naturally occurring gentle, fresh pink as well as a bitter yellow-green that looks like it came from a really toxic effluent.
Not So Serious (SS – 2011-12) by Pallavi Mohan
Technicolor movies were my inspiration for this series, colour-wise. I like the way the Technicolor colour palette has come back in a more acidic, modernised form. The challenge here was to use pastel hues of the traditionally heavy colours so the image becomes light and airy.
Tempting Eve for Adorn
I used colour in an almost fantasy-way here to recreate the innocent sensuality of the Garden of Eden. Lit in a high key-light the colours in this feature grab you by how they seem both natural and artificial at the same time.
Creative Head and Founder, Pavitra Rajaram Design
Pavitra Rajaram is the Creative Head of Pavitra Rajaram Design. The firm focuses on providing strategic design consulting, product design in textiles and tableware, global product sourcing, visual merchandising, and styling services to premium brands in the lifestyle design space. Pavitra also designs home and lifestyle products under her own label and creates bespoke interiors for a private clientele. In 2012, Pavitra held her first solo exhibition of mixed media artworks.
Today’s Festive Floral would be a distillation of exuberance and earthiness, a modern palette centered with a vibrant, deep crimson but balanced with tones of aquamarine and soft gold. It would be textural and layered, with an interplay of traditional patterns in a more modern scale. Classical floral motifs from textiles and paintings would be juxtaposed with metallic accents, geometric patterns in charcoal and soft white, and warm lighting.
Festive Floral takes me back to the traditional celebrations of my childhood in Bangalore; the beautiful garlands in the flower markets, the elaborate rangolis or kolams, the strings of marigold, neem leaves, jasmine, and rose against the gleaming red earth athangudi floors and deep dark wood of traditional homes. The flash of diamond nose-pins, gleaming ruby bangles, brass lamps, and the deep rich tones of kanjeevaram saris are my visual cues for this theme.
Profile Image and Showcase• Copyright Vishesh Verma Colour Inspiration • StockPhotosforFree.com » flickr.com/photos/ stockphotosforfree/7375453162/ • Theophilos Papadopoulos »flickr.com/photos/theo_ reth/6324344746/ • likeaduck » flickr.com/photos/thartz00/4876137302/
Profile Image and Showcase• Courtesy Pavitra Rajaram Colour Inspiration • Saimz Eyez » flickr.com/photos/51970870@N02/5085589616/ • McKay Savage » flickr.com/photos/mckaysavage/2576736293/
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