Published: 27th March 2020
This NIFT dropout joined Insta to attract students. Here's why her art classes are unique
She has also been a photo stylist, a textile lampshade designer and has done commissioned paintings and sculptures for collectors. Recently, renowned designer Shilpa Reddy attended her workshop too
One of the techniques Deepika Bijawat uses to draw students into her class is that she holds up a Coke can and asks them, "How do you think the can was made?" She is usually met with puzzled looks from children, who generally are her audience considering she is an Arts teacher at NASR Girls' School, Hyderabad. She goes on to explain how, right from designing to execution, artists are involved in one way or the other in the final product. When children blink their eyes with wonder, that's when she considers them successfully drawn into the class. "It is actually a good teacher's job to keep the attention of children," says the 35-year-old. Going by the techniques she uses, she must be a pretty good one, we reckon! She even started her own page on Instagram because, "Most of my students are on it," she quips. Just one of her ways to stay connected with her students and go above and beyond to make art a worthy pursuit in their eyes.
Born in Jaipur with an innate love for the arts, Deepika knew early on that it is where her heart belongs. Such was her commitment to her vision that she dropped out of NIFT, Delhi after just one semester when she realised it didn't align with her goals. "I just felt like I was drifting away from my childhood dreams," shares the teacher. She then opted to study Fine Arts at the International College for Girls in Jaipur and fell in love with sculpting. She landed herself in Hyderabad in 2010 and now, is a happy high school art instructor who conducts workshops on doodling, clay modeling, pottery without a wheel and others — whenever she has the time. Her workshops are open to all.
Deepika Bijawat | (Pic: Deepika Bijawat)
"With kids, it's all about the minutest instructions — 'dry your hands thoroughly before touching the clay' being one of them," shares the teacher with a smile. But she truly believes that sculpting — arts in general — helps children realise and respect the effort that goes into making any product. "That's a good way to inculcate respect for our craftsmen who don't get recognised much," she says. She starts from the very basics — making shapes like cubes, quadrilaterals (which helps them understand other subjects as well) — and goes on to more complex structures.
Despite being a teacher, the thirst in her to learn more hasn't been quenched yet. She wishes to learn to bake ceramic clay models, go more in depth into metal sculpting, develop her own photographs and so much more! Because, why not?