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Bang Bang Theatrical Performance: Hua Kuch Yun

So, Hua kuch yun, last night was a fantastic night. 

Around 5 in the evening, while I was completely wrapped up in my work, my cousin brother yelled from his room,  ‘We have to be at Alhamra at 7:30, Apaaaaa. Not a minute late! Tayar ho janaaaaaaaaaaa’ 

Ami hazoor and khala sitting in the middle space, veranda, conversed to each other like this, ‘ye kia kehraha hai?’ Kuch samajh aii is lerke ki..? Kitna tez bolte hain aj kal ke bache.’

‘Achaaaaa. I’ll be ready’ I replied back from my headquarters on the other side of the veranda. ‘Agai hai samjh mama mujhe is kiiiiii. Play ka keh rahaaaa haiiiii’. I assured my mother I have deciphered his unclear voice as I scanned the papers before me. ‘Mai tayar hi hooon, Basittttt. I haven’t changed my kapray after returning homeeee. Chala jayengeee.’

Okayyyyy. The long distance conversation between me and my brother ended calmly with no objections raised. More so, because the theme of the play was partition as mentioned a day earlier. Absolutely looking forward to it, I concluded my work, by leaving the tripod, the camera and all the papers along with my laptop right there on the bed. A very serious mistake for when I returned all tired, it was all still there. Magically. We took the time to offer Isha and around 7:20 pm we were on our way to Alhamra Art Council. 

The play scheduled to start at 8 pm, actually started at 9. But once it started, I wished it to be longer than 1.5 hours. what a performance and what a fantastic screen play! It was all bang bang with pure intellectual and artistic gratification for me. Keywords: Intellectual and Artistic Gratification. The writer Sajid Hasan Sahib and the director Dawar Mehmood amazed us with the very first scene being extremely enjoyable and creative. On the grounds of ethical reasons, I cannot disclose the scene I recorded that blew us away. In fact, not one but many scenes caught our attention for their creativity and magic of extraordinary performance.

Everyone was mesmerized and so was I. And though the story was written with just the right amount of comedy and fun, it still managed to make us teary towards the end of the play. I am not going to reveal it rather encourage the citizens to go and catch the play when it screens in your city.

On our way back, we talked about why was the hall not full and why did some people leave during the play despite it being a good story? It is my humble opinion that such theatrical performances are not necessarily for the educated and upper class who can afford to pay for its expensive ticket. Rather, such well written and thought provoking plays challenge citizens and draw a fine line between people who are really mentally educated and respond to literature alongside art and history. And citizens, who connect more with regular entertainment than meaningful one. And that is okay. It shouldn’t terrify us or discourage. Hail more. 

We need more plays like this. More theater like this. More intelligence, and more meaningful art. My request to the actors that made this memorable for me, kindly, don’t go on wasting your potential in TV dramas ever. Stick with such meaningful themes in theater, for you were on fire last night with your dedication on stage.

Bravo!

Note:  The images have been taken with my cell. Because I had been busy taking pictures all day at Wazir Khan Mosque, I decided to leave the camera at home at night. So sorry for the low quality pictures. Understanding required.

An Open Letter to the Broken Hearted

We all have our own paths to tread – our own mistakes to make – our own lessons to learn. This is your path, no one else’s. These are your lessons, no one else’s. So learn them by heart.

Do you remember how it had all begun?

This world did not leave you; it was you who had left this world and its glamorous ornamentation. You had made that choice for Allah with a firm determination. I know it’s been long and you are tired of failure and frustration, but don’t be so quick – yet – to mess with your prioritization. Revisit, revise, review, and never forget why you had undertaken this expedition.

Do not stop. Do not pause. Do not take time-out for scrutinization. Do not let any hindrance push you away from your final destination. If you have fallen, get back up. If you have lost, try again. Take another chance, another leap, and another plunge. It’s not unusual to find pleasure through pain, victory through defeat and love through separation.

So you are going through some tough conditions? And are not up to the mark with society’s expectations? On the other hand, you are not doing so well even in your religion? Failure is constant, and rejection is coming at full force from every direction? And your life is going haywire – not at all the way you had put forth to Him in your proposition?

But… Hold on a second’s fraction.

Your life is going exactly the way Allah has planned in His Preserved Scripturum; sorrow, failure, grief, the feeling of pain so intense that you wonder whether you are dying of apprehension; it is all from Him.

You can’t understand God’s love till you understand pain; till you find out the reason behind suffering, and loss, depression, anxiety, and the reason why you keep turning in the middle of the night in great agitation.

And you can’t understand God’s love till you learn to appreciate pain, for pain detaches us from this world and pushes us out of our comfort zones on a hunt to feed our hungry souls that are near-destruction; death loses its petrification; sin loses its temptation!

And when you are feeling extremely low, just remind yourself that Allah has always helped you, and has never abandoned you in any situation.

And remind yourself that Allah always keeps His special gaze on the one who is suffering from consternation.

And remind yourself that when you are heartbroken, it’s easier to connect with Qur’an, and it can truly feel like Allah is there for your consolation.

And remind yourself how He has sent random people to comfort you when you were crestfallen. They wouldn’t know, but He knew. And they would always say the right things to your heart’s satisfaction.

And remind yourself how He has decorated His sky for you with magnificent moon and little twinkling stars and makes them follow you wherever you go so that no matter how lonely and sad you feel, no matter how abandoned you are, you can always look up, and find them in their spectacularation.

And remind yourself of your late-night prostrations. Remind yourself of those tears of desolation. And of those guilt-ridden conversations, admitting that you have failed, yet again, in desperation. Remind yourself that, no matter how great the fall, He has always taken you back without any complications.

To experience pain is a gift of nature. It has the power to break us, for the sake of spiritual liberation. So, really, if you are broken, or shattered, and if you don’t understand anything anymore and are too scared to even plan anything out, that’s a beautiful manifestation. Leave it to Him and trust His formulation.

I do not own this article that perfectly reflects my inner world, my mind. It has been penned down by a ZA student and I came across it online. May Allah bless this soul, who has expressed such wonderful honest feelings to bring comfort to the heart. 

Elements of Art

There are seven elements of art. Seven beautiful revelations. 

Line: a mark made on the surface. 

shape: something made with lines, geometric or organic in nature. (notice the shape of the strokes made, as well)

Space: The way artist has used and placed the subject in the space on the canvas. Observe the positive (space occupied by the subject) and negative space (space outside the subject’s placement).

Value: The darkness, and the lightness of the colors. The varying degrees of colors used in the painting/art.

Form: 3 dimensional objects/subjects. 

Texture: The surface quality of an object or paint. 

And Color. Color is emotion. 

Before I knew these elements, I had a very limited and almost like an outsider’s position or view of the paintings. It was as if my eye could see the art, and admire it,  but had no way to really look inside the painting and understand its math. Ever looked at E = mc with admiration but still wondered what sorcery lies behind the equation? Or what does E mean to begin with? It is not the message, but the technique that you must grab. It is like that for the art world. You need to mentally dissect it to fully appreciate it.

I want you all to take a minute, and look at these famous paintings again. Only this time, with the knowledge about the elements that made these beauties come into being. It makes a huge difference, in your appreciation and understanding of the artwork and the art experience above all. You will also notice, which artist has taken up which element to play up in his paintings in order to develop a unique style of their own.

I promise you, after studying these elements, the way you look at any painting will dramatically change. As now you will be able to analyze it.

Give it a try. Have fun.

The Starry Night, oil on canvas by Vincent van Gogh. 1889.

 The Scream by Edvard Munch. 1893.

Girl with a Pearl Earring, an oil painting by 17th-century Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer. 1665.

Flaming June by Sir Frederic Leighton. Oil on canvas. 1895.

The Persistence of Memory (1931) by Salvador Dalí.

Water Lilies by Claude Monet. 1916.

Observe Picasso’s work if you wish. You will see a different world within a world. And Leonardo’s masterpieces. 

Heart in a Bowl – An Oil Painting

Have you ever tried to paint something disturbing? And actually felt quite good about it..

There has been murder and mayhem in my painting.

Those of you who have been following me ardently on instagram know me as as someone who recently discovered the wonderful world of art. And ever since I picked up paint brushes, you all have seen me paint flowers and pretty landscapes only.

Two nights ago, there was a dramatic change. I painted my first proper oil painting for myself, and I diverted from the usual flowers to paint a human organ. 

A heart in a bowl, served with an apple, on a table by the flower vase.

Sweet settings, sweet colors but in reality when you think about it, there is nothing sweet about it at all. 

  

I have already explained on instagram how horrified my family was to see it. 

I am very grateful for their horrors.

How did it comfort me?

Usually when I paint flowers, I ask everyone at home how do they look. But this time, I was filled with so much calm and certainty about how I felt while painting it, that I just… reveled in its disturbing beauty and personal meaning for me. I am sure it resonates with many. This is the first time, I noticed that I have accepted my art without needing another’s acceptance. This is also an indication I have transitioned from painting impressions to expressionism. Or perhaps symbolism. Is it? I should learn and discover more.

Art is beautiful, in every form. And it may sound funny, or odd, but I think now that perhaps artists paint to test people’s wit and reflective state of mind. Their IQ, their depth. Art is not there to amuse you or present to you a piece of decoration for the wall. It is there to test you. Our growth depends upon it, Just like other subjects of knowledge out there. So much to learn, with so many meanings to discover. So many.  

Winter Love and Cookies

The most beloved thing for the ladies at my home, in winter season, is to make comfort food to keep us nazuk generation warm. My mother knows I catch flu so easily, so to keep me healthy, she keeps coming up with healthy recipes. The way she makes Fish for us. The way my khala makes Dodhee (milk with khashkhaas, grinded rice, almonds and dry fruits) and the way we finish it all up in few minutes and burp like we just had milk like babies. This is what winter is all about at my home. Cooking. Love. more cooking, more love and lots and lots of baking. We love to bake cakes! We love to bake salty buns! And my mom loves to make cookies!  These pictures have the awesome cookies my mom made to keep my brain active. If you do alot of studies and reading, she said, these cookies are perfect for you to keep your brain from hurting and feeling you are running out of brain juice. Well done mommy! welldone! Once again, where would we be if not for our mom’s love?

To thank them back for their care, we in return try to follow TASTY one minute videos that have made our brains run on food all the time. I remember how my cousin brother bugged me all day last winter, to try this cheese potato paties. Ammi simply refused to enter the kitchen as she was tired. So, naturally, he and I took control of the kitchen and created a delicious mess. We had such a good time that day, me on the mashing potatoes task and him, cleaning dishes. As we grow older, we tend to grow apart from our loved ones. Cooking everyday turns into cooking together only once in a blue moon. My brother and I get little time to even make tea together because of our schedules, he is always out, studying, working on something and so. But there is something wonderful about winters. It brings you closer to the things and people you love. And I am expecting exactly that this season. 

I am hosting a lunch tomorrow, inshaAllah, for my family. It’s after a long time that I am doing every small task related to cooking on my own. The chicken has been bathed, pampered, and marinated. I prepared the mashed potatoes in advance. And hoping to prepare vegies in the morning. Be sure to stay tuned on my insta for the follow up. You and I need to get closer too. I miss you my readers. Thank you for reading me all these years, lovingly. 

I love you all bohat sara.

Now tell me, what is your comfort food or activity in winter?

 

 

 

 

The Asateer Experience

“I love bright red drinks, don’t you? They taste twice as good as any other color.” , said L.M. Montogomery.  The lady meant Red Vine by red drinks but since we are Muslims, let’s imagine that red drink as Rooh Afza’aan. *smart*

Merhaba everyone! 

So glad to share something totally different today with pictures and color red.

The lady in the picture is me. And I am oh-so-happy with my Scarlet veil these days. A couple of days ago, Nadia Masood, a very dear friend of mine launched Asateer Scarves. An Online boutique for premium scarves that promises to amaze you when you touch the fabric yourself. And boy! Was I blown away or what! The unboxing and inquiry of the scarf really did amaze me. Let me tell you this Asateer experience from the beginning. Grab pop corns and sit still. If you are my avid reader, you must know by now how much I loovvvve telling stories and emphasize on details.

The very night of Asateer Scarves launch took us ladies who have been following them on Insta, by surprise. I personally could not believe the over whelming range of colors being offered. Strawberry! Butterscotch! Vanilla! Lily! Apple! Oh! I was here and there on her website and going crazy about which scarf to get first. There is chiffon. There is silk. There is viscose and there is jersey. But the indecision comes mainly because of the beautiful color range. You just can’t put down even one color there. All of them are chic, elegant and pleasing to the eyes at the same time. Smartly complimenting the current season. So anyway, I knew I am overwhelmed. And that’s why I asked Nadia to surprise and delight me. Because I trust her so much, I picked 3 colors and totally left on her to pick one out of these for me and send me right away. 

The delivery was amazingly quick. I had the yellow package in my hand within 2-3 days and now began the series of little pretty surprises followed by the finale when I finally wore the scarf. She sent me the loveliest and most bold and beautiful color from her range: Red. In her own words, “Red is the colour of passion, strength, leadership, determination, and courage.” I was overjoyed and so relieved to see what I receivedThe green box itself is elegant but go a step further and you will find a card that has Asateer Scarves printed on it. Be more courageous and flip the card, and you’ll be surprised by a HANDWRITTEN THANK YOU NOTE penned down by Nadia Masood herself. How thoughtful and pretty my scarf could get? Amazing! Wallah! I love love love handwritten notes. I just love this tradition of using hands to pen down words from the heart, and Nadia just hit it right. 

And this is not it. Get your hands on the scarf and the first thing you will fall in love with is the quality. The feel of it on your finger tips. I do not know how she manages to get the best fabric and from where in the world, or if the fabric is only of UAE but it is extremely good quality. The jersey is light and so butter soft. The fragrance and the sheen in it is so mesmerizing! And if you are normal, very very normal like me, you are going to notice the sparkly bling bling gold label and go mad for it. I almost became a child when I saw it up close.

I swear. I could not stop playing with it as a ring. Here is a video demonstration of the bling bling it has. Why am I emphasizing it? Good point. The gold label deserves a gold medal because it actually makes the scarf stand out even more, apart from the quality. Let’s say it compliments it. I personally don’t enjoy scarves with labels because they are so dull. This, however, is very pretty, small in size and smiles back because it is properly made and beautifully placed.

 

The Scarlet in jersey has light sheen in it. Very very pretty and makes your scarf glow. I have worn it once and tomorrow I might get a chance to wear it again. And you know the amazing thing? It goes with many of my outfits, not just with one dress but many! Which is another reason why I am excited to try it with different colored dressed and see how the shade Nadia Masood managed to make the top seller at Asateer Scarves, compliments my wardrobe. A good scarf color for me is able to make your life hassle free by bonding with maximum dresses in your almirah. Given that, I am considering getting a royal/dark blue scarf from her and oh my goodness, Midnight Sparkle Scarf was sold out the same night it arrived. 

I have much more to say and so many ways to try out my jersey Scarlet scarf. Stay tuned with me on the blog and at my insta page for my Asateer (legendary) experience. 

Scarlet’s price is $27. Given the beautiful color, the quality and the length of the scarf, I believe it is reasonable. Because trust me, this scarf has the capacity to last for a lifetime. I have bought scarves from Khaadi and such brands as well that promise quality, but when it comes to scarves, very few brands live up to their word, they literally die after a few washes. 

Are you going to wash your Scarlet ever, Peri?

Meeee? noooo! I am never going to get it dirty in the first place. This much I am in love with it. Here is a quick tip for the veil girls: Keep a rose water spray bottle and add a little fragrance of your choice in it. Just spray that on your scarf when you feel like it has lost the fragrance. You do not need to wash your scarf every time you wear it. This can literally take away it’s softness and glow. So keep it smelling fresh and style it up however you want. Thanks to Nadia Masood’s thoughtful scarf measurements, I can take my Scarlet either as veil like we normally do in Pakistan. It is wide and covers up nice. Or I can wrap it over my head like a scarf or even turban. It really made looked so pretty when I wore it. 

Here. One more photo to capture its beauty.