My name is Avantika Shrivastav and I’m from New Delhi, India. I have been in love with art since I was a child, back then I used to draw on the walls of my house with crayons. I started painting with watercolours four years ago. I bought a cheap watercolour set and paper, picked up an old brush I found in my house and painted some flowers. From that day onwards, I kept practicing a lot and could see myself improve. I have also done some black ink illustrations.
I have a degree in Microbiology. When it comes to art, I am self-taught. I have no formal art education. I am a freelance artist. I have sold some of my paintings via Instagram and have done some commissioned work also.
My current favourite supplies are Daniel Smith watercolours, Princeton and Escoda pointed round brushes and Arches and Strathmore watercolour paper. Watercolour paper is of three kinds, each with different texture. I use hot pressed paper for realistic paintings which involve fine detailing and cold pressed for loose florals, galaxies, etc. For beginners I would recommend Kuretake Gansai watercolours and Canson watercolour paper. I practiced a lot with these.
My biggest inspiration is nature. The colours and patterns in nature are beautiful. I love painting flowers, animals and birds. When painting flowers, I first study the flower or its photo and observe all the patterns and colours in it, then draw it out. If I don’t have the colours required, I mix them and test them out. Then I paint the first layers, let them dry and then paint the subsequent layers as required. I always go from light to dark while painting with watercolours.
I use a lot of different techniques, which I mastered after a lot of self-learning and practicing. The most important technique to practice in watercolours is wet on wet. The more you practice it, the better is your control over the brush and paint flow. I love painting realistic flowers the most, they require a lot of time and patience, but it is worth it when I look at my final painting and feel proud of myself. I paint loose florals also, I find it therapeutic and relaxing.
I also take inspiration from space. I love painting galaxies, moons and crystals. Painting galaxies and abstract art helps me calm myself. I did some zodiac paintings in which I combined animals and space.
My aim is to capture the beauty of nature and the magic of space. To make paintings which give joy to the one who looks at them, a reason for them to smile. I can create the world I want in my paintings and I want people to enjoy looking at my paintings, as much as I enjoy painting them. I want to inspire people to paint and whenever someone tells me that my art inspired them to paint, I become very happy. One day soon, I hope to make a living out of my art completely.
Pick up a brush, take out your paints and paper and start painting, everyone starts somewhere, enjoy the process and keep practicing!
Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!