Sharmila Badkar is the founder of Cheeky Chilli a food blog she runs with husband Amey in San Francisco. Sharmila documents all her culinary adventures, whilst Amey takes photographs for the site. She is an architect by day but at night she loves nothing more than sharing her latest recipes. Originating from Bombay, they have both been influenced by a city with a vibrant cultural heritage. So we are proud to bring you the Designer Insights of Sharmila Badkar.
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1) In your own words describe your unique style and creative aesthetic?
My style is largely ethnic modern. My sensibilities are grounded in the principles of modernism but are informed by the intricate tapestry of the many threads of India, where I’m from.
2) When starting a new project, what is your creative process?
I begin by collecting as much information as possible about the project and client’s needs, and then I review this information through the lens of design and experience. This gives me a starting point for coming up with ideas.
3) Out of the creative people you have worked with, who is it that you respect and admire the most?
My husband, Amey, who is also an architect and one of the most strategic design thinkers I know. He has strong personal design principles, an ethos that he is able to apply to any problem, making him a cohesive, logical yet creative designer, in a way I hope to learn to be.
4) When looking for inspiration is there a particular thing you do to get inspired?
Usually I take a walk by the sea. Something about the vast open waters and cool sea breeze always gets my thoughts flowing. If I can’t get out, I find listening to some music, usually classic rock, helps by eliminating other noise from my head and allowing me to concentrate, strange as it sounds.
5) What has brought you to this point in your career? And what is your advice for people looking to follow in your footsteps?
In my case, it has been the journey – the experience of trying different things, collaborating with wonderful people, and lots of hard work – that has brought me where I am today. I’d be the first to detract anyone from following in my footsteps. Learn from everything and everyone you find worthy, try many different things, even if you know exactly what you want to do. The process will inform you and your work. But most importantly, my advice, if it be of value to anyone, would be to find and forge your own way.