When men his age are out partying or running the rat race, 23-year-old Parth Kothekar spends hours hunched over a piece of paper, creating intricate designs, pendants, postcards and even typography. In an email interaction, Ahmedabad-based Parth, who was in Chennai this month for the ‘By Hand from The Heart’ show, talks about his inspirations and his venture Papercut.
How and when did you start Papercut?
It all started when my design brand Omegamma had to come to a halt because of lack of finance, but I didn’t stop there. I created graffiti using stencils on paper, making them as small as I could, and that’s how Papercut came into existence. It helped me translate real-life images on to paper.
Did you learn how to do this from someone?
No. My expertise with stencil work motivated me to start this venture. It was also comparatively easy and interesting. I was never a bookish guy; I had to appear thrice for the SSC exam just to pass it. After I completed school, I enrolled myself in an animation institute but dropped out as I didn’t like the importance given only to 3D. But I did continue to sketch and once I quit animation, began to sketch full-time.
How has the response to Papercut been?
The response is what keeps me going. It's overwhelming to see strangers support my work. My customers are quite shocked when they find out it’s paper and not glass print. I think it's merely because it's new for everyone, including me.
How long does it take to create an artwork?
It depends on what kind of work it is. The more intricate, the more time it takes. Sometimes an artwork takes me 18 hours to complete, while there are some that are completed within 35-40 minutes.
Any special paper you use? What are the instruments you require for your work?
I don’t use any special kind of paper. I usually just use 125 gsm normal sketching paper; any paper under 160 gsm works fine. I only require a pencil, paper and a surgical knife.
Who or what is your inspiration?
The artwork itself is my inspiration. Before I start creating something I have an image on my mind, but I'm unsure what it's going to look like in the end. I sketch on a sheet of white paper, cut out the pattern and then paint it black. The results often amaze me; there are no words to describe how satisfied I feel. It makes me want to create more and more.
To view his artwork, log on to his >Facebook page or >his website .