#LookoutFor | 'In The Middle of Something' by Saakshi Vyas
A naughty kid, who super enjoyed scribbling her crayons onto any walls, Saakshi Vyas has grown up to take it up a notch. She's been full time into design for a while now, and is a self-taught illustrator. Working under the banner In The Middle of Something, Saakshi is one happy-making artist that TLJ thinks everyone should #LookoutFor. Bits of a conversation on GIF-art, and her inspirations— from songs like Jaaneman Jaaneman Tere Do Nayan (Vidya Sinha and Amol Palekar starrer Chhoti Si Baat,1975) to the summer-king-of-our-hearts, the Mango.
TLJ: When did you start making GIFs seriously?
SV: I was listening to this track, I'm a Believer by The Monkees, and for some reason I thought it'd be fun to draw a GIF to this song. I drew a girl riding her bicycle with her cat in the front basket! That got me kicked, from there on I started drawing GIFs.
TLJ: How different are GIFs from making animation?
SV: I think the only difference is that GIFs do not support audio files and since they have less number of frames and are only web friendly, the file size is also smaller.
TLJ: A few artists (contemporary or from history) you love:
SV: There's an illustration design studio called 'Brosmind', run by two brothers, absolutely fantastic work! Owen Davey. Lisk Feng. Bodil Jane. Min Liu, her GIFs are really good. Cecile Dormeau for her super fun illustrations!
TLJ: A few artists (contemporary or from history) you try to imitate even if subconsciously
SV: Bodil Jane, for the textures she uses in her drawings, its so lovely.
TLJ: Has an urban structure, or any small element of city life inspired your art?
SV: Yes! (You know how when) traveling in a local train, securing a seat for yourself is a top priority? The minute women board the train they'll frantically start asking other women who are already seated: "Where you getting off?"
I was so amused being a part of this experience, so I drew about it! I jot down little instances like these which make for a fun drawing later. Apart from this, I also maintain a travel sketchbook and draw little experiences in them— for memory. (Below)
TLJ: A musician/food that inspires you to make art
SV: Anything and everything! I drew a dancing cat GIF when I was once listening to Wake Me Up Before You Go Go and Jaaneman Jaaneman Tere Do Nayan.
Another time, I was craving English breakfast one Saturday morning, so I drew my breakfast sitting in a cafe!
We leave you with some of her summer-inspired work: