Artist Uses Bodies As Her Canvas

By Tuan Minh Nguyen

A few days after the recent big snowstorm, the sky starts to turn blue again. The sun peaks out by the buildings and trees. 

On the long bench behind the Loyalist College campus, the snow is also slowly melting. Chirag Parcha sits there silently, finishing his drawing. Next to him is a pencil set, a box of paints and occasionally, there is a gentle breeze blowing by his ear.

“On weekends, I’ve been doing art, doing pencil sketches here,” Parcha shared.

Parcha is from Hyderabad, India, a place famous for the world-renowned dish biryani. This place is also associated with a rich, long-standing culture and heritage. From the culturally rich land, the way Parcha views the world around him is reflected in every stroke of his drawing, creating a unique character for each of his works. 

 Chirag Parcha finishes his drawing on the bench behind the Loyalist College campus earlier this month, enjoying a sunny break in the weather.

Chirag Parcha finishes his drawing on the bench behind the Loyalist College campus earlier this month, enjoying a sunny break in the weather.

“People in India and the culture that we have are also represented in not only mine, but many of the artists in the world,” he said. “That culture and that sense of belongingness will always be reflected in my artwork too. I have many paintings which literally depict the colours, the culture, and the sense of love that we have in India.”

Parcha is the first in his family to pursue an art passion. His parents often say that he was God-gifted with that talent. “I’ve been drawing and painting since I was a child,” Parcha says without taking his eyes off the painting he is working on. 

“I don’t remember the exact date when I picked up a pencil or a paintbrush. I just have something inside of me, the magic of art, and it just grabbed me so hard that till now, it’s been 22 years, I am constantly drawing and painting, trying to make something great, trying to make something unique and express myself through art.”

Parcha has never attended an art school. He simplifies painting as just drawing on canvas. Parcha also sees painting as a way for him to express his inner feelings whenever he feels bored or stressed. 

“Painting and art is something that if you see something, then just take some insights from it,” he shared. “It’s a mixture of one’s feelings, also a mixture of one’s passion, one’s creativity. It’s your own creativity that will be shown in your artwork every time you do it.”

Parcha is currently a first-year student of global business management at Loyalist College. Despite being busy with his studies and adapting to life in Canada, he still finds time on weekends to draw. Parcha also starts a business related to art which is drawing custom designs on clothing and shoes. This work not only earns him extra income, but also helps him develop his art skills, he says.

Parcha usually spends from a few hours up to an entire day completing an artpiece, depending on its size. In a week, he typically has two to three orders, and he spends all his weekend days to complete them.

“It was my niece’s birthday, and I ordered a customized painting to give her as a gift because I wanted to give her something special and handmade,” shares Renu RajPurohit, a customer who found Parcha’s business through Instagram. “His masterpieces demonstrate how much effort he puts into his work. The painting stunned my entire family, and he added even more particular meaning to the day with his work.”

As Parcha finishes his painting, the sun is slowly setting behind the trees. He caps his paintbrush, puts the painting in his backpack, and heads to the bus stop to head home.

Parcha has never thought about stopping painting and drawing. To him, art is not just a passion but a companion that follows him throughout life. 

“There is no full stop in life. There are only commas,” he shares. “Art is something that inspires everyone, brings out their happy sight and makes them believe in life. It’s my responsibility to make them believe that there are no full stops in life.”

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