She’s played cricket for UAE, has got into the prestigious National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad and to top it all off, she’s won the ad agency, J Walter Thompson’s ‘The Helen Lansdowne Resor (HLR) Scholarship’. She is Sneha Sankar and she’s only 21. Excerpts from our chat:
How did your journey with design start?
I always had a flair and love for the arts: visual arts, music or dance. It was just a question of which form could become a fulfilling career. It started with comics, which developed into animation, which further matured into architecture. During my first year in NID, my seniors displayed their work and a couple of them stuck with me resulting in the dawn of my obsession for graphic designing.
How did the scholarship happen?
It began when I was in France for a student exchange programme. I received a mail from the head of student relations regarding the scholarship. I began consolidating my latest work and the most nerve-wracking experience was writing my personal statement because of the introspection it necessitates. After that, I just had to wait.
How did you react when you heard about your win?
My reaction was quite underwhelming to be honest. I received the phone call about being chosen and I replied with a blank “Oh, thank you.” That owed to the fact that I was in shock and confused as to how to react. It eventually sunk in and felt real and rewarding once I called my family.
You were part of the UAE’s cricket team. What was that like?
The cricketing days really moulded my understanding of how people perceived and disregarded women cricketers. There was always a reaction of surprise followed by an attitude to go easy on me. It really bothered me. This understanding of the world has moulded me to persistently keep fighting for my rights and the rights of others.
Does your work include any design that conveys a message on breaking gender stereotypes?
Not yet. I am certain that while finding my place in the world and the design industry, working with feminism, women’s rights would definitely make a part of my work.
Reach Out: facebook.com/snehasanks