School of Design’s Head of Department, Milindo Taid Shares 5 Insightful Tips for Aspiring Designers

“Great design is a multi-layered relationship between human life and its environment.” – Naoto Fukasawa (Naoto Fukasawa Design, Japan)

Visual Communication Design is a burgeoning industry, with more youngsters getting interested in pursuing formal education in this specific area of design. Milindo Taid, Department Head at the Whistling Woods International School of Design has a few tips for all the young aspiring visual designers in the country and beyond, who wish to pursue their dreams.

1. Anticipate change

Milindo Taid talks about design being a relatively new profession, delving into how it’s a future-leaning stream, “For anyone aspiring to do design seriously, you need to understand that you intervene in design in the present but it impacts the future. It’s a future-leaning kind of profession. Anticipation is one of the key requirements for a design-thinker.”

2. Accept responsibility

As someone once said, “With great power comes great responsibility.” Milindo Taid echoes similar sentiments, saying, “A design-thinker and doer needs to have a sense of responsibility towards the consequences of his or her actions – for design is a very powerful shaper of culture and society.”

3. Channel your empathy

Design requires that you solve someone else’s problem and therefore calls for a zeal to participate in the lives of others, for which, you have to be a people person. “Design is, first and foremost, about people and communities, and empathy is a core requirement.” Designers need to be naturally empathetic.

4. Be open to collaboration

“Design is so multidisciplinary,” says Milindo Taid, “Someone aspiring to be a designer needs to be open to collaboration, especially with people who are not like you. Designers are more of generalists than specialists. An openness to be engaging with other disciplines is a trait you must possess.”

5. Be a visual thinker and perceiver

Design requires visualization abilities, and Milindo Taid believes that being visually inclined is one of the key elements to becoming a design-thinker. “You must have a general sensitivity to all things visual and be able to appreciate a certain aesthetic. You need to understand what is ugly to get an understanding of what is beautiful,” he says, “It can be acquired, but it’s better to have a general sensitivity to form and colour. Designers think through drawing. You should also be able to put pencil to paper effectively.”

The Whistling Woods International School of Design offers a cohesive and comprehensive programme in Visual Communication Design for all aspiring designers.

Admissions are now open. You can register for Whistling Woods International School of Design here.

Prof. Milindo is former faculty in Communication Design at the National Institute of Design (NID), Ahmedabad and former Head of New Media, NID. He is also one of the founding faculty members of the Communication Design programme at the MIT Institute of Design, Pune. With over 19 years in teaching, research and academic administration across India and abroad, several student projects that he has guided have had national as well as international recognition. He is a recipient of a European Union doctoral scholarship at the Universitat Politècnica de València, València, Spain.


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This Styling Project Explores Gender Fluidity Like Never Before

Gender fluidity has been been a relatively grey area that most commercial and even contemporary artists shy away from. Anvita Nair, a School of Fashion student at Whistling Woods International displayed the beauty and complexity of gender fluidity and non-binary genders in this unique styling project.

Combining Indian ethnic elements with the edginess of high fashion, the ethos of this project truly hit the mark. The project, which is up on Behance, is prefaced by the following statement, “Fashion to us is embracing our true style and personality, and therefore it doesn’t have any place for preconceived ideas.”

“We decided to use bandhani fabrics, and oxidised jewellery in order to give an Indian aesthetic to the entire look. All the bandhani garments have been constructed by us using old Bandhani sarees. The girls’ make-up has been dramatized by painting tikkas on their foreheads.”

We hope to see more impactful work like this from the bright minds of the today’s generation.

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5 Useful Insights Shared by Sukhwinder Singh at Whistling Woods International

Another interactive session at the 5th Veda cultural hub brought Sukhwinder Singh to Whistling Woods International. At the session, the musical sensation, known for some of the biggest hits in the Hindi film industry, shared his most invaluable insights. Here are some of the memorable pieces of advice shared by him.

1. “Make your learning process exciting and interesting, and you will never want to stop learning.”

One of the most useful insights shared by Sukhwinder Singh was to make your learning process exciting. If you enjoy what you do, you never have to work a day in your life. This philosophy truly resonated within the students at Whistling Woods International.

2. “Only a crazy artist can make his audience go crazy for him.”

With numerous hits accredited to his name, Sukhwinder Singh is considered a sensation in the industry. He shared advice on how one needs to loose control as an artist to achieve excellence.

3. “Put on your headphones and walk to the beats of the song to get a feel of each beat.”

Given his experience in the industry, Sukhwinder Singh had some great tips for all the aspiring students who wish to pursue the same path. From how to experience every beat of a song to how to make it in the industry.

4. “Someone who truly listens to music and understands every beat, will invariably be able to sing it.”

Sukhwinder Singh has been the voice of some of India’s biggest hits, from ‘Chaiyya Chaiyya’ to ‘Ramta Jogi’. He shared how he goes about understanding the song before singing it. 

5. “Your belief is what truly matters; it will give you the power to achieve anything you want.”

The acclaimed vocalist ended the session with this unforgettable quote and live renditions of some of his most famous songs.

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Whistling Woods International Brings Graphic Art & Augmented Reality to Mumbai Comic Con

Bringing forward the talent and skill cultivated in the institute’s School of Animation, Whistling Woods International brought a whole new aspect of creativity to Mumbai Comic Con this year. With meticulously crafted graphic novels by the students of Animation being featured front and center at the institute’s stall at Mumbai Comic Con, there was no mistaking the work and effort put into the impressive end products.

The three graphic novels, namely Shaktirupen, Born Again, and Nirvahna, displayed professional design language, original character,  and plot design. But that’s not all; the students of Whistling Woods International broke convention and introduced augmented reality at event for the first time ever. Bajro Narayan Datta, student of Animation, spoke about the Chinese Zodiac posters he designed, integrating augmented reality as a fun twist in them, saying, “We’ve developed this app called Poster Viewer and if you view these 12 images through the application it starts animating. We thought the idea of putting motion in a poster and making it easily accessible via a cell phone was interesting. I don’t think we could’ve pulled this off without learning at Whistling Woods International. Our game design department helped a lot. Mixing concept art and game design gave an output like this.”


As something that hadn’t been seen at Mumbai Comic Con before, this unique artwork brought a bevy of young enthusiasts. Yusuf Mehta, Head of the Animation Department at Whistling Woods International, spoke about the diversity of the institute’s curriculum and the work put in by the students, saying, “Whistling Woods International School of Animation runs an interdisciplinary course. You can do something from comic book design, 2D animation, 3D animation, game design — everything. It’s not the kind of specialisation where you have to choose one or the other. In today’s world, diversity allows the students to not only have the skills that they require but to shape the kind of course they want to do and in which their interest lies.”

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Rekha Bhardwaj Shares 5 Invaluable Insights From Her Own Experiences

With soulful music and life-changing insight, Rekha Bhardwaj conducted an unforgettable 5th Veda session at Whistling Woods International. Sharing her invaluable tips on music and relaying her journey to success, she undoubtedly had the audiences captivated. Here are a few gems of wisdom shared by the iconic vocalist:

1. “My confidence comes from my daily riyaaz.”

Despite her unmatched success, Rekha Bhardwaj shared with the students of Whistling Woods International the importance of riyaaz or practice. Her revelation was both inspiring and humbling to the students.

2. “Even as a child I knew I had to be a professional singer; it came naturally to me.”

Delving into her childhood and her budding passion for music, Rekha Bhardwaj spoke about how her true passion had always been a part of her psyche. “As a 5 year old I used to attend classical music conferences which added to my musical leanings,” she said, “I used to learn from my elder sister while she did her riyaaz early in the morning.”

3. “My Guru ji used to say the most important riyaaz is to listen to yourself.”

Sharing insight from her mentor, Rekha Bhardwaj spoke of her own leanings and experiences with music. “When you are well versed with a song,” she said, “improvisation happens on its own. You can play with the song however you like it, because then it becomes your own song.”

4. “Classical music helps you stay grounded, which lays the foundation of singing.”

She may have ventured into various genres, garnering fans from different crevices of the world, but Rekha Bhardwaj talks about how her roots will also be embedded into the heart of classical & folk music and how the fundamentals are the most important, saying, “Folk music is the mother of all genres of music in the world. Classical music is like meditating; it gives you inner peace and helps you stay calm.”

5. “Every song adds to my musical journey, and so it becomes special.”

Having performed numerous hits, Rekha Bhardwaj displays her ardour for every song that adds to her musical journey. Amidst her interaction with the students, the singer also performed some of her hit numbers for the audience.

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German Artist’s 3D Animations Are Mind-Bending Visual Displays

Oliver Latta is a visual artist and designer whose work has taken the internet by the storm. Known for his abstract style, this artist’s vision brings our daily and seemingly monotonous actions to life in the most unique way.

Using 3D animation software, his designs are an inspiration to many animators and visual artists across the globe. According to Tech Insider, Latta aims to create “everyday situations in a new, abstract concept” with his designs.

Take a look at his animations below:

You can take a look more of his work on his website.

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Terence Lewis Shares 5 Things to Remember When You’re Working Towards Your Goal

During an immersive session at the 5th Veda cultural hub, Terence Lewis shared some invaluable insight on how to embark on the road to success. Sharing stories of his humble beginnings in Mumbai to the sheer passion and drive for dance that kept him going, Terence Lewis captivated an audience of over 500 students with his advice on how he achieved success. Here are some of the memorable pieces of advice shared by him.

1. “Life doesn’t give you any guarantee, but we must all take a chance.”

Something that started with a serendipitous dance competition in school, later bloomed into a means-to-an-end during the early stages of his career as Terence Lewis conducted dance lessons in Mumbai. It wasn’t until much later that he took the final leap and pursued his passion in earnest that his journey to becoming one of the most renowned choreographers in the country began.

2. “Be persistent, be consistent and at the same time be practical.”

Peppered with inspiring anecdotes, Terence also spoke about how he took on opportunities that didn’t necessarily further his career in the direction he wanted, but did later provide him with the financial safety to pursue his dreams.

3.“Dream big but take practical steps towards your goals.”

Not one to discourage a dreamer to dream big, Terence Lewis instead encourages you to approach your goal practically. He says, “The trick is to break down the larger goal into small doable steps and keep at it, every single day.”

4. “I can’t stress enough on how important it is to maintain one-pointed focus towards your goal.”

Nothing can be achieved without focus, and Terence Lewis’s stellar career is a testament to that. He speaks about creating your own opportunities, saying, “In a competitive world today, you cannot keep waiting around for the right opportunity. Make sure that you are completely ready and that why it is so important to train yourselves, 24/7.”

5. “Fall in love with your craft and make it your affair; nothing else can be important.”

Looking at Terence Lewis’s journey so far, it’s apparent that he’s lived and breathed his art for many years. His final piece of advice to the students was to fall in love with their passion, as that is the surest way to success and achieving your goals. “Students here are fortunate to have such an institute, there is nothing like this. Here you get a chance to love what you do.” he said, “You need the right space and environment to succeed along with such amazing teachers.”


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