My name is Neha Subramaniam. I am a self-taught full-time artist born and brought up in Mumbai, India and I am currently staying in Dubai (UAE). Drawing and painting has always been my hobby and passion since childhood. I always wanted to go into a creative field so I took a degree in Interior Designing and worked in this field for several years.
But my longing to draw and paint took over and right after my son’s birth (who is, by the way, 18 years old now), I quit my job and started drawing and painting and took up teaching to sustain myself. I loved teaching art so much that I opened my own art Institute in 2004 and was teaching fine arts and hobby classes to kids and ladies.
I taught for almost 12 years, teaching all types of medium. Along with teaching, I took part in lots of art fairs and organized art and craft exhibitions at my own institute. I got featured in some magazines and also was interviewed by local television channels. I got to judge a few art competitions and sold my paintings too.
In 2016, I moved to Dubai. For a year, I did not know what to do. I didn’t want to start again from the scratch in a new country. So I took this opportunity to establish myself as a fine artist instead of just an art teacher. I sketched everyday, polished my skills, watched lots of YouTube videos, and got so inspired.
That is when I came across Anna Mason’s channel and my perspective towards watercolors changed. I was always fascinated by intricate and detailed realistic work. But I didn’t know that this was possible with watercolors. I just feel that everything looks so fresh when painting with watercolors & this became my favourite medium.
So I took her course for 6 months, practised and painted every day for 10 to 12 hours. I loved her approach towards realistic paintings and then there was no looking back for me. I started my own website where I also sell my paintings.
My greatest inspiration is from nature. I love to paint flowers, birds, animals, shells… in short, whatever is colourful. I love to challenge myself with every new painting. I usually work from photographs in my studio. My technique is wet on dry with lots & lots of layers. I start out with a very detailed sketch over which I paint with very light washes. I gradually build up my values starting out with the lightest values, then painting the darkest shadows. This sort of gives me the range & then I know how light or dark I should do my mid tones.
Apart from watercolors I also work a lot with colored pencils. In fact I love to mix both the mediums to get wonderful effects.
My greatest encouragement is from my family, especially from my husband who’s always supported me in whatever I do. Going forward, I want to exhibit my art in art galleries all over the world and I also want to teach again. Thank you so much for reading my story.Recommended6 recommendationsPublished in
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!