As a child my mother influenced me because she was very creative and had created a scenery with weaving. She sang and loved music, she had acted during her schooldays. I also grew up listening to Tom Jones, Neil Diamond and Engelbert Humperdinck because by elder brother would play music at home when ever he was around and play it real loud.
I started acting in my school plays and took up dramatics as my curriculum activities. Painting was a thing I did at home when ever I had time, started with sketching Jughead, Veronica and Archie from the comics that I use to read, then came poster colours and then oil paints. I had to leave painting when I was in college because I picked up an allergy to the smell of oil paint.
During the making of a serial Kismat we needed some paintings for the sets. I knew a neighbor who had learned painting from J.J. School of Arts. I approached her to do some canvases for us. When I went to see them I was very sad. She saw my mood and asked me the reason. I told her I loved painting but had not painted for many years because of my allergies. She introduced me to acrylic paints which do not have a smell. There was no looking back for me I picked up canvases and started painting right away and since then I have never stopped.
Life has been exciting. I started my career as a model while I was still in college in Delhi, then moved to Mumbai to do some serious modelling. After I had modeled for practically all the big brands, I felt it was time to move on to some thing else that would excite me. I moved on to do acting, anchoring shows, writing, producing, directing and painting. I love the variety – for I am a restless soul and I need to be doing different things to keep me excited.
Of course I must not forget all the travelling, I got to do because of my work and holidays. You know one of the things I want to do in my life is see every city in the world.
Coming to the foundation – there is a time in your life when you start feeling that you have done things for your self all your life and now it is time to give back. Many times I have met extremely talented people who have not got their dues. I always felt very sad for them and when I analysed it, I realized that they had often lost out because they did not have some one helping them or supporting them or even giving them an opportunity to showcase their work and that is how the idea of Respond Foundation came to me.
I hope in my own small way I am able to do some thing for the talented unexposed artists from various fields in the near future through my foundation. We intend to pick up 4 or 5 artists from a different creative field every year and show case their work in different cities across India and may be even abroad. Out of the these artists at least, one will be under privileged who may also be given financial aid in terms of provision of raw materials etc.