Whether through film, design, or other media, the arts allow individuals to express themselves and their communities, and remake the world at large through their work.

Careers of the Future is an original series airing exclusively on The Ismaili TV, where students and young professionals can hear directly from members of the Jamat at the leading edge of their fields about how to most effectively prepare for the future of work.

In two recent episodes, we heard from Moyez Alwani and Zeenat Lakhani. Moyez is the Global Head of Design for the Aga Khan Academies, responsible for the designs of the Aga Khan Academy campuses. Zeenat is an accomplished Bollywood screenwriter based in Mumbai and has worked on two films: Shaadi ke Side Effects and Hindi Medium. In their interviews, they shared insights on what being an artist is like and what skills are essential to succeed. 

The screenwriting and design episodes examine the recent pioneering work by both guests in a timely and wide-ranging way that blurs conventional boundaries between the two areas. These fields are compelling in terms of an individual’s imagination and creativity since they are often associated with creating something from nothing. 

For instance, a screenwriter explores and creates their own new world, which provides insights, shifts perspectives, and evokes emotions in people. Meanwhile an architect, through their designs, has the ability to influence an individual’s life in the real world. In summary, these fields have the potential to transform people’s lives and mindsets. 

Being a designer allows an individual to explore a different world. It allows one to encounter different cultures, traditions, and lifestyles which later enables them to incorporate these experiences into their works.

“We've got projects all around the world, and when you get exposure there, you really start to go deep into the culture of those places because there's no way you design a building unless you start understanding the culture. Because of this, it has really enriched my understanding of the world,” said Moyez.  

A screenwriter must also have the ability to come up with new and innovative ideas. Creative and critical thinking plays a vital role in the success of one’s work. 

“Another important aspect is that you have to have creative stamina,” said Zeenat. “To wake up every morning and to be able to think of new ideas and new approaches is very important because, as a screenwriter, there are days when the same scene will get rejected multiple times.” 

There are many options available in the arts today, ranging from writing to animation to computer graphics. However, it takes the right kind of person to build resilience to become an artist, to be driven by the ultimate objective, to be self-motivated and, most importantly, to find inspiration. There has to be a trigger before creating a piece of art. In order for this to happen, an individual must influence their life with as much experience as possible. 

Lastly, it is critical that aspiring artists build a strong network of friends and mentors. These individuals not only help with career decisions but also influence an artist’s style, perspective and worldview. 

Both episodes are now available to watch in full on The Ismaili TV On Demand.