Dia Mirza, the pretty painter

Samarth Goyal

New Delhi, Oct. 9 -- Salman is not the only actor who paints. There's Dia Mirza too. The 30-year-old's father, who was a graphic designer, was her first introduction to the world of colours and shapes and figures.

"My dad was an artist, and my childhood was spent amid paints, canvases and rotary pens. I grew up in an environment which encouraged me to play with colours. My earliest memory of any form of painting used to be my parent's wedding anniversary. They used to hand paint cards for each other. Like most children, I was encouraged to have fun with colours. Then I took up art in school, in place of computers or home science."

It was at the age of 16 that Dia's life changed. "Then of course, career took a turn and I didn't find time for it, or may be I didn't want to find time for painting."

But soon, she realised something was amiss. "I went back to painting six years ago. It's healing and perhaps it's the best thing for me. Painting is like the time which you spend with yourself. It helps you rediscover yourself. I enjoy painting and gifting my works to friends."

So what kind of paintings does she do? "Gouache paintings is what I do now for 2 reasons - first, it is perfect for Bombay weather and second, it gives you the feel of an oil painting and water colour as well. I have discovered the right canvas size for myself. I like a painting to tell a story. It is therefore a combination of nature, landscapes and objects," she says.

The side we know

Dia Mirza started modelling for print and television at the age of 16. Dia shot to fame after she won the Miss Asia Pacific title in 2000 in Philippines, and became the first Indian contestant to win this title in 29 years. And that's when her filmy career began. She made her debut in Bollywood in 2001 with Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein. After acting for over a decade, she jumped into production with beau Sahil Sangha and actor-turned-producer Zayed Khan. The trio opened a production house called 'Born Free Entertainment' and produced their first film in 2011, titled Love Breakups Zindagi, which was an average scorer at the box office.

Published by HT Syndication with permission from Hindustan Times.