internet trends

Representing people of colour and folk art, #SouthAsianArtists has Twitter’s finest illustrations

The contributions from Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Burma and Bhutan displayed a dazzling array of talent.

For a week in October 2017, Twitter users all over the world logged in to find that their timelines had become a virtual exhibition space for South Asian artists. A hashtag started by design student and illustrator Fatima Wajid, #SouthAsianArtists trended on the microblogging site with graphic designers, cartoonists and illustrators uploading their art, introductions to their work and aesthetic style.

Wajid’s simple but brilliant idea, “To support all South Asian Artists on the interwebz!” yielded some truly incredible results.

The fabulous display of talent from across countries like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan and Maldives covered most genres – ranging from folk and pop-art to anime and children’s book illustrations. For people like Anoosha Syed, it was about drawing herself into the world of cartoons. Describing herself as a “Pakistani Character designer”, Syed’s contributions tackled the often overlooked issue of representing brown people in popular art.

Others, like Chennai-based Subadra Kalyanaraman chose to showcase what they could do with folk art. Kalyanaraman posted pictures of the ubiquitous aluminium kettle found at every Indian street corner tea shop and wall art painted by her in the Madhubani tradition of Bihar.

Pakistani-Canadian Eiynah Mohammed-Smith uploaded four images, each one blending together themes of religion and sexuality. In one image an Indian woman and a Pakistani woman share a passionate kiss, their hair a map of their respective nations. In another a woman in a hijab suggestively licks a banana. The artist, who started off as a sex blogger, describes herself as “a woman, writer and illustrator of Pakistani/Muslim background who often critiques religion, both the far-right in the East and the West”, on her website.

A Telugu artist based in India, Lohitha Kiran, tweeted out medical sketches of the anatomy of the human brain and the heart along with a sketch of two transgender people. The illustrator is based in the US has worked on various botanical illustrations and graphic novels on transgender health and diabetes.

Jawad Cheema, an artist, stand-up comedian and screenwriter shared some of his fan art featuring pop-culture characters such as the Marvel anti-hero Deadpool and Tyrion Lannister from the popular series Game of Thrones.

We welcome your comments at
Sponsored Content BY 

When did we start parenting our parents?

As our parents grow older, our ‘adulting’ skills are tested like never before.

From answering every homework question to killing every monster under the bed, from soothing every wound with care to crushing anxiety by just the sound of their voice - parents understandably seemed like invincible, know-it-all superheroes all our childhood. It’s no wonder then that reality hits all of a sudden, the first time a parent falls and suffers a slip disc, or wears a thick pair of spectacles to read a restaurant menu - our parents are growing old, and older. It’s a slow process as our parents turn from superheroes to...human.

And just as slow to evolve are the dynamics of our relationship with them. Once upon a time, a peck on the cheek was a frequent ritual. As were handmade birthday cards every year from the artistically inclined, or declaring parents as ‘My Hero’ in school essays. Every parent-child duo could boast of an affectionate ritual - movie nights, cooking Sundays, reading favourite books together etc. The changed dynamic is indeed the most visible in the way we express our affection.

The affection is now expressed in more mature, more subtle ways - ways that mimics that of our own parents’ a lot. When did we start parenting our parents? Was it the first time we offered to foot the electricity bill, or drove them to the doctor, or dragged them along on a much-needed morning walk? Little did we know those innocent acts were but a start of a gradual role reversal.

In adulthood, children’s affection for their parents takes on a sense of responsibility. It includes everything from teaching them how to use smartphones effectively and contributing to family finances to tracking doctor’s appointments and ensuring medicine compliance. Worry and concern, though evidence of love, tend to largely replace old-fashioned patterns of affection between parents and children as the latter grow up.

It’s something that can be easily rectified, though. Start at the simplest - the old-fashioned peck on the cheek. When was the last time you gave your mom or dad a peck on the cheek like a spontaneous five-year-old - for no reason at all? Young parents can take their own children’s behaviour available as inspiration.

As young parents come to understand the responsibilities associated with caring for their parents, they also come to realise that they wouldn’t want their children to go through the same challenges. Creating a safe and secure environment for your family can help you strike a balance between the loving child in you and the caring, responsible adult that you are. A good life insurance plan can help families deal with unforeseen health crises by providing protection against financial loss. Having assurance of a measure of financial security for family can help ease financial tensions considerably, leaving you to focus on being a caring, affectionate child. Moreover,you can eliminate some of the worry for your children when they grow up – as the video below shows.


To learn more about life insurance plans available for your family, see here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of SBI Life and not by the Scroll editorial team.