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A Self-Taught Designer Behind Indian Cricketers’ Jerseys: Aaquib Wani

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In the dynamic world of sports design, Aaquib Wani’s journey stands as a testament to resilience and creative prowess. From facing societal pressures to transforming his passion for art and music into a thriving career, Aaquib’s narrative brims with determination and a profound connection to India’s rich cultural tapestry. 

Aaquib Wani: The Man Who Designed The New Jerseys For Indian Cricketers -

Source: Forbes India

Aaquib’s struggle commenced in his school days as he wrestled with the pressure of societal norms emphasizing academic success. Hindered by academic challenges, he sought refuge in music, fostering his creativity and discovering solace in its expressive domain. Over time, his musical endeavors garnered acclaim, especially in Delhi, where his band ‘Phobia’ carved out a place in the city’s vibrant heavy metal community.

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It was during his band’s journey that Aaquib’s artistic inclinations led him to experiment with designing posters, which kindled his passion for the art form. Meticulously exploring tools like Photoshop, Microsoft Paint, and Illustrator, Aaquib’s ardor for design burgeoned, setting the stage for what would become his defining career trajectory.

Designer Aaquib Wani didn't go to college but his designs are now at Asian  Games -

Source: Hindustan Times

A pivotal moment in Aaquib’s career arrived when he received an opportunity to design jerseys for the Real Kashmir FC, drawing inspiration from India’s traditional pashmina shawl. This milestone marked the beginning of his distinctive approach, intertwining cultural motifs seamlessly into his designs. Further recognition beckoned as Aaquib lent his creative touch to the team Rajasthan Royals for the Indian Premier League 2023, seamlessly blending block print techniques with the architectural finesse of Rajasthan’s havelis.

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Continuing his journey of cultural homage, Aaquib’s collaboration with Adidas for the Indian Cricket Team’s jerseys encapsulated the intricate ikkat weaving technique, symbolizing his deep-rooted respect for India’s heritage. Infusing elements reminiscent of the tiger’s stripes, Aaquib’s designs spoke volumes about his commitment to representing tradition through a contemporary lens.

JSW Inspire weaves a story of India's craft heritage

Source: Exchange4media

Aaquib’s prowess in sports design faced its ultimate test when entrusted with the monumental responsibility of creating sportswear for over 600 athletes participating in the Asian Games 2023. Drawing inspiration from the rich tapestry of Indian handicrafts documented in Aditi Ranjan’s ‘Handmade in India,’ Aaquib meticulously incorporated motifs from various regions, creating a tapestry that celebrated the nation’s diverse cultural heritage.

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Aaquib’s dedication and tireless efforts did not go unnoticed, as Parth Jindal, founder and director of JSW Sports, lauded his work as a significant contribution to India’s sporting prowess. As Aaquib witnesses athletes donning his creations on the field, his journey comes full circle, transcending personal struggles to leave an indelible mark on the world of sports design.

 

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