Artist InsightFeature

An endeavor of telling stories and kindling fantasies

In a pursuit of bringing imagination in front of the eyes, Rafid Rahim is a man whose artistic journey is as unconventional as it is awe-inspiring. Born and raised in a culturally enriched family, his hobby of walking in this artistic path grew over time to become his passion. Rafid Rahim’s story as an artist is one of imagination, and boundless creativity. Backed by his bachelor’s degree in architecture from Shahjalal University of Science and Technology, he developed his world of art, particularly in digital 2D illustration. Rafid pursued this path without any formal art training, making his journey all the more fascinating.

The core of Rafid’s art lies in his unique storytelling. His work is a mesmerizing tapestry that weaves together the rich tapestry of Bangladeshi culture with elements inspired by everyday life in urban and rural setup, fantasies blended with science fiction, and literature. Through his art, Rafid invites viewers to embark on a journey through the vivid landscapes of his imagination, where the lines between reality and fantasy blur. The art pieces are captivating stories in itself, where the past and present converge, allowing viewers to connect not only with their roots and traditions but also delves deeper into the world of literature and get lost in the intricate details of his creations. He wants his art to evoke emotions, to remind people of their childhood, a cherished book, or a life experience that profoundly resonates with them. The luminous works of Rabindranath Tagore, Kazi Nazrul Islam, Satyajit Ray, Lalon Shah, and other Bengali pioneers serve as the cornerstone of his creativity. Concepts from Bangla literature and songs infuse his art with elements that resonate deeply with his audience. One of Rafid Rahim’s notable art series is “ষডঋতু- একট বাঘ ও পপঁচার গল – The Allegory of a Tiger and an Owl.” This post-apocalyptic tale set in Bangladesh draws inspiration from Satyajit Ray’s “Pather Panchali” and beloved childhood poems like “Kajla Didi” and “Train.” The series ingeniously employs the six seasons of Bangladesh as allegories for six distinct human emotions, weaving a thought-provoking narrative that captivates viewers. His art often bridges the gap between reality and the fantastical. Rafid’s artistic inspirations extend beyond the boundaries of conventional art. He draws creative energy from filmmakers like Satyajit Ray, Hayao Miyazaki, Akira Kurosawa, and George Lucas and shows like Star Wars and Dragon Ball Z. Rafid is continually exploring the art styles of famous Bengali artists, such as S.M Sultan, Gaganendranath Thakur, and Zainul Abedin, adding to the rich tapestry of his inspiration.

Rafid Rahim’s choice of medium is as diverse as his inspirations. His primary canvas is the digital realm, where he meticulously crafts his illustrations. However, he occasionally ventures into the world of ink and watercolors, showcasing his versatility as an artist. Rafid Rahim’s artistic process mirrors the precision of his architectural training where he begins with a concept, building it meticulously through multiple sketches, refining composition and basic colors until the initial phase satisfies his vision. Once the composition and color values are set, he embarks on

the intricate process of painting details and rendering, ensuring that storytelling remains at the core of his work. When faced with moments of stagnation, he takes a break from drawing and engages in other activities. This break allows him to regain his inspiration, ultimately returning to his artistic endeavors. His advice to fellow artists is simple: don’t stress excessively about creative blocks and focus on enjoying life.He also ardently encourages young artists not to forget their Bengali roots. Rafid acknowledges the prevailing social stigma in Bangladesh that suggests artists don’t earn much and that there’s no future in the field. However, he believes the demand for skilled artists is on the rise, thanks in part to the opportunities presented by social media. Rashid emphasizes that artists have the potential to contribute significantly to freelance work, corporate projects, and more. He stresses the importance of recognizing the capabilities of artists and affording them the respect they deserve.

Rafid Rahim’s art is a testament to the power of passion and dedication. Currently,he is deeply immersed in both personal and commissioned works, though he keeps the details under wraps for now and updates on his social media page, “The Panicked Architect.”He invites others to explore the vivid landscapes of Bangladesh and beyond, where local culture, urban and rural life, and fantastical stories blend seamlessly. His work is a testament to the ability of art to transcend boundaries, evoke emotions, and create a bridge between culture, memory, and fantasy.

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