Alina Tauseef an animation artist whose personality is inclined towards space between reality and dreams, love and magic, self-expression and celebrating music.Her focus is on Visual Design with 2D Animation and Visualization, & her career involves commercial and personal animation projects. Most of her personal work revolves around self-exploration, imagination and experimenting different techniques and styles.
We invited Alina for our Pakistan journal talk session where we host people of vision & inspiration.
How did you get started as an animator?
My childhood interest in arts and drawing matured into a love of animation and visualization right as soon as I was able to understand what animation was. Cartoons and specifically drawing was what I spent most of my time thinking about as a kid. It was the 1940’s Disney style that I enjoyed the most. The Mickey, Donald and Goofy cartoons from that era played every morning on the Disney Channel. The appeal, whimsy and sense of fun of that style always enchanted me. From the early days to up till now I have a passion and joy for discovering answers to the complexities found in the works of great animations and continue to strive for a similar quality in my own work.
Any art piece that is closest to you? Why does it hold such significance?
I got two favourites…For a social cause, I made my first stop-motion animation on Child Sexual Exploitation in Pakistan and the reason behind this piece was to create awareness amongst parents to be warned to be more careful in such matters and on the other side of the spectrum I made a cheerful and groovy video/animation on Patterns within Patterns and Hidden Symbols of Anarkali Bazaar. Particularly these two animations opened a lot of creative possibilities and courage that I now use in my recent works.
How do you find inspiration?
To be inspired is the main starting point for almost every animation that I make.Inspiration is a wondrous thing; it comes in various forms. There are times when I churn out inspiration from a beautiful view, a good movie, a masterful song, or even something as trivial as the pattern on a paper napkin. The point being that all one needs to be inspired is to be breath-taken by something, no matter how small or irrelevant it is. The truest source of inspiration for me to this day is my father. I grew up watching him work hard for us and for his passion (culinary arts), which in turn made me want to work hard for something that I loved, and it just so happens to be the visual arts.
How do you overcome creative blocks?
I spend a lot of my time being alone, as I believe creativity flourishes in solitude. With quiet, I can hear my thoughts, I can reach deep within myself and last but not the least I can focus. So when I ask my friends to leave me alone for sometime and if they’re reading this, know that I am NOT a mean person. It is something that I HAVE to take time out for in order to refill my creative tank. I need this space to CREATE.
Your #1 art tip or words of wisdom:
The animation is a very specific and odd craft. We are combining a lot of different elements into one art which only comes with a better understanding of visual arts and technology so my advice to all of those who are passionate about art and animation, do take drawing classes and animation classes. Also, follow other animators/illustrator to better understand the craft and to find what inspires them. SAY LESS DO MORE
How is your personality reflected in your work?
As a designer in the digital age where borders have become increasingly porous, I try not to limit all my work to just our culture, but rather evolve it into a mixture of different cultures and schools of thought. The internet has harvested a complex web of interconnectedness between people of diverse cultures, thereby giving rise to a plethora of work making use of more than one culture. I believe art is subjective to each individual and how they process and the way they create it. For me, most of the times it is an expression of where I am emotionally in that moment, and creating is very therapeutic and helps me get it all out.
Who are your favourite Pakistani illustrators?
There are many but just to name a few:
5 things inspiring you/your work right now:
diversity in hues of skin in Pakistan nature, love and beauty that surrounds us.Architecture, culture and its people.
A lesson you have recently learned?
I am stronger than my demons.
What’s on your horizon? Any current/future projects and plans/dreams you can share with us?
Right now around the commercial side of work, an animated TVC for Nishat Linen Summer ‘18 campaign is under production. I am also working on a personal (just for fun) project series that is about a magical cat (inspired by my own cat, Fuzzy) called “Jade” which will be up in a few days period. So do keep an eye out!
What’s one thing you’re most proud of & the biggest achievement so far?
My first animated TVC that went up all over Pakistan.
With society giving more attention to women, what advice would you give someone right now?
Other women should not be a competition. One should stand with them not against them and celebrate together and be uplifting as “together we go together we grow.”
What did you learn from your biggest failure?
Its okay to fail. Keep on hoping.
What is the best piece of advice? The worst?
Set a goal to achieve something that is so big, so exhilarating that it excites you and scares you at the same time. – Bob Proctor
What’s your productivity secret?
Focus, time and effort.
Looking 10 years into future where would you like to be?
Honestly, it is something that I am still exploring, and I find comfort in not knowing where I will end up, as I genuinely enjoy working with my own two hands, and I like being experimental and in control of everything I create. However, I am always open for collaborations with different artists depending on the kind of opportunity that arises. I also plan on pursuing my masters in animation, so fingers crossed for that!