Mir Suhail Qadri

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mir-qadriBorn in a family of artists, where his grandfather played Saran and his cousin was a professional singer, Suhail’s entry into art was, but, obvious. The only twist in the tale was that he did not try to play the ‘Saran’ or take to singing. Instead, he took up a brush in his hands to paint. This was reason enough for him to attract as much pressure as possible. Opting for a career that was different from the family’s, was a good enough reason for everyone to question him as far his choice of career was concerned.

“Focus” was, always, Suhail’s  mantra.

He strived for what he wanted. Today he is among the young cartoonists of the Valley who have already created a niche for themselves.

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) selected his sketches for their calendar and New Year greeting cards after he won a national competition last year (2012). Suhail prefers to be modest about his achievements. An avid cartoon watcher, Suhail is quite a foodie who loves to spend time with his Play Station and read comics.

Born on 25th June, 1989 in Kawdara, Srinagar, Suhail Ahmed Qadri studied Commerce at the Senior Secondary level, graduating from the Institute of Fine Arts, thereafter. Always passionate about art, Suhail started making cartoons even before he joined college. His career took flight when he signed up with Kashmir Images, where veteran journalist Bashir Manzar groomed him. His next career move took him to Rising Kashmir as a cartoonist. Four years at Rising Kashmirand one and a half years at Kashmir Images, further refined his skills as a cartoonist. Today, he works for Kashmir Reader.

Tired of seeing politics dominating every sphere in Kashmir life, he tries his best to portray the ‘other’ side of Kashmir. We have a rich history and culture. With my art, I want people to know more about Kashmir,” he says. Presently, Suhail is working on themes like ‘Seyaen Meeras’ (our heritage), designer motifs and Kashmir humour T-Shirts.

Suhail-mir-cartonisttWhen his work is put on the altar of comparison with other contemporary cartoonists, Suhail has a very simple take, “My competition is with myself. I try to be as original as I can. I am always honest with my work.” Suhail also confesses to being “a little mad” and feels this trait sets him apart from others.

“It is important to be “a little mad” in whatever you do. Craziness is important. Only mad people can bring about a change in the world,” he says.

Suhail’s talent, hard word and madness are sure to take him right to the top of his profession. And, bring smiles to all touched by his art.

Sarah Kabeer