passion to profession

Kashmir Magazine

Enthusiastic towards painting and sketching since her childhood, a self-taught Mehandi artist Athar Rasool from Handwara village has taken the Mehandi designs to the next level with latest motifs giving attractive choices to brides.

Athar (22), who hails from Langate village in Handwara of north Kashmir’s Kupwara district, is pursuing Graduation in Fine Arts. She chose Mehandi art as her profession as her family and friends suggested her to take up this art as a profession after they noticed talent in her. “I didn’t visit any art school for learning. I learnt it all by myself”, Athar said.

Pertinently, for Kashmiri brides the Mehandiraat or the night before wedding day is one of the most important functions when the bride eagerly watches her hands and feet being adorned with trending Mehandi designs.

Once the wedding date gets fixed the hunt for a good henna (Mehandi) artist begins as no bride would compromise on the designs for her special day.

Sharing her journey as a Mehandi artist, Athar told KNS that at the age of 12 she developed a level of consciousness in her after seeing a Mehandi artist applying henna on a bride in her neighbor’s marriage ceremony. “It gave me firsthand experience of the art. I really visualized the art grabbing the best possible outcome”, Athar said.

“I always viewed this art through a modern lens that merges the old and new one. I took help from social media to understand the basics of the art. It is the best medium to gain excess to the larger audience and the changing patterns of the art”, she added.

While remaining in touch with people on social media handles, Athar has created a page on Instagram where from get bookings from her customers. She also shares her work on social media platforms to allure customers. “I am getting my customers while sitting under the four walls of my home. I am associated with my customers through social media platforms. Once I get bookings through my pages I go to the bride’s home accordingly”, she also added.

She said I always try to serve my clients with the best and satisfying service as Mehandi is something that fascinates everyone and every woman dreams of having the best mehandi memories on her wedding day.

“I offer services at affordable prices as I believe everyone should be able to get these services and make their wedding days memorable”, she said.

Athar credits her success to her family saying, her family is very supportive and broad minded as they always encouraged her talent. She also thanked people, especially her friends who directly or indirectly supported her in this journey.

“If you believe in yourself and are determined to do something, nobody is going to stop you. There will remain few who will criticize your work and there will be many who will praise your talent. So just focus on your dreams. Make your dreams come true” said Athar.