Black and white

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Young Sydney artist’s work is drawn from wanderlust and a love of nature

Immediately arresting, artist Jasmine Solanki’s works of art are beautiful in their complexity.
Illustration, jasmine. IndianLink
Black and white drawings inspired by mountains and travel, the illustrations are created with specialised tools.  
“I’ve used Micron and Copic pens here,” Jasmine tells Indian Link. “These pens enable intricate details, and another specialty is that the ink never fades or smudges.”
Illutrations, Jasmine.IndianLink
These are the type of pens that are used in museums to indicate dates and details for artefacts and are made to stand the test of time, she adds.
Jasmine created these works when she was employed full-time and simultaneously pursuing a post grad degree. She has now quit her job and graduated from her course.
While she has dabbled in different forms of illustrations right from a young age, the pen illustration has been a recent interest.
Illustration, jasmine. IndianLink
 “I have been doing this for two years now and absolutely love it, and even connect with this form in a personal and spiritual way,” the 23-year-old Sydney-based artist shares.
She admits she has had no formal art training. “I signed up for a Cert IV arts course in TAFE but it never appealed to me and so I discontinued,” she says. Recently, having quit her job to focus on a family enterprise, she has been devoting a lot more time for her passion.
Illustration, jasmine. IndianLink
Born and raised in Haryana, India, Jasmine’s life there involved a lot of travel to the mountainous regions in Uttarakhand and in Jammu & Kashmir. Moving to Australia has allowed for more frequent travels to various parts of the world. Wanderlust and the love for mountains are quite apparent in her works.
The illustrations here took between 2 to 10 hours, depending on the details. 
The raven comes from her love for birds, and the pet bird she left behind in India. The ship was created for her friend in the navy and also a reflection of a recent cruise on a Hurtigruten ship in Norway. The compass is a manifestation of her love for travel and the sense of adventure it brings; the illustration also depicts mandalas and gears, which she says is representative of both her spirituality as well as her background as a mechanical engineer.
Illustration, jasmine. IndianLink
Her most favourite illustration, she says, is the tree. “It’s an illusion. It has the clover/club symbol from the pack of cards, and is reminiscent of the time in India where many happy hours were spent playing card games. But the tree is made up of intricate mandalas, which hold a deep spiritual meaning for me.”
Seeing compatibility in seemingly opposing forces, not just the overt black and white, comes out as a special quality in the artist’s work. The hot air balloon for instance, came out as she dreamed of travelling while planning her holidays.
Elements of the natural and the built environment blend in beautifully. There are feelings of being confined as well as feeling free. The raven’s hair is at once rough and matted, and elegantly fashioned.
The essential duality of human nature comes across beautifully.
Illustration, jasmine. IndianLink
Jasmine plans to take her art to a larger audience, as a mindfulness colouring book, perhaps.
“In the long-term, I have plans to translate my art into a high-end fashion and accessories range,” she shares.

Nanditha Suresh
Nanditha Suresh
Nanditha is a food blogger, qualified journalist, writer and editor. Her passion for writing includes feature articles, lifestyle, food, and fashion.

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