R.S. Dobarial: fine art and drawing with fingernails

Lucknow, Feb 18 (Calcutta Tube) A resident of Lucknow has mastered the unique art of drawing with his nails. Be it intricate designs, portraits or cartoons, R.S. Dobarial, 31, does it all with equal ease on paper.

‘Within minutes, I can draw anything for you. I just need to re-shape my pointed nails before starting any drawing,’ Dobarial, a resident of the Kurmanchal Nagar here, told IANS.


‘Though I can draw a number of things, I just love depicting gods and goddesses and representing ‘Om’ (a religious symbol) in different styles,’ said Dobarial who also works with an educational institute.


‘While working on such themes, I tend to become more imaginative and my drawings have more creativity.’


Dobarial uses his thumbnails for his drawings – which are basically fine outlines of the subject made mostly on coloured paper.


‘For drawing purposes I have grown my nails in ‘V’ shape that enables me to use them like pencil tips or sketch pens. As the nails are pointed, anything I draw on paper gets embossed on it. Depending on the requirements, the drawing can be cut out of the outline and framed.’


Dobarial has been using his nails to draw for over 20 years. ‘I had never thought of drawing like this. Actually, one day when school was over, I went to a friend’s residence to make a painting – we were to exhibit at the school exhibition.


‘While my friend was busy colouring, I was sitting idle, fiddling with pieces of chart paper that were of no use. Then, using my nails I just wrote ‘Om’ in an artistic way. It came out so beautifully that my friend told me to put the ‘Om’ on top of the painting and encouraged me to develop the unique art. On his suggestion, I grew my nails and gradually mastered the art.’


Dobarial, who has never taken any professional training in art, wants to promote his innovate technique, particularly among blind students.


‘I want to train blind students as they can earn through this art. Like Braille, they can use this technique to give shape to their imagination,’ said Dobarial.


Though he participates in exhibitions, he is strictly against selling his works.


‘I don’t do it from the commercial point of view as I am of the view that the moment I start seeking monetary gains from my art I will lose it. I just want to promote it so it can help people become self-reliant,’ said Dobarial.


He is quite famous in his locality, where residents fondly call him ‘Painterji’.


‘He is a very down-to-earth person. We can visit him any time and ask him to draw our portraits,’ Rajeev Kandpal, a resident of Kurmanchal Nagar, told IANS.


(Asit Srivastava can be contacted at asit.s@ians.in)

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