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My interest as a designer lies in effective communication of new knowledge and research through international quality cutting edge design tools and practises. An effective moment that helps to create a positive understanding and response to the emotional, social and political landscapes we live in, in order to live fuller happier lives.

Creating effective moments of interaction through art and design is powerful as the experience you have is unique and stays with you - lingering and resurfacing at different points in time. I work across illustration, graphic design, sculpture, and music to create these lucid moments

01Estranged students postcards-09

Hi, I'm Samia. I'm a graphic designer and an artist based in Chandigarh, India with 12 years of international work experience.

Some of my skills include illustration, graphic design, web design, packaging design, design thinking, brand strategy, printmaking, UI & UX design, storyboarding, photo styling, making comics & music.

I am the Creative Director of Preet Nagar Residency, an artist and writers residency that I run with my family, in Preet Nagar. An intended community set up by my great grandfather in the 1930s between Amritsar & Lahore, the two cultural hubs of pre-partitioned Punjab.

Oh, and I make music as well sometimes.


An illustration from The Red and Gold Pen. An illustrated research book by Lauren Wilks at University of Edinburgh, Scotland. August 2021



"Samia enlivens and extends the meanings and imaginings of words, texts, data and transcripts  - the illustrated 'Feminism In Our Times' booklet is now a go-to classroom tool, with students and colleagues pausing on the pages and returning again to the varied, multiple and evocative images.  The Widening Participation postcard booklet occupies a similar place as a lively resource, and one in which students can recognise themselves in and respond to, as a more real, emotional and powerful connection than abstracted widening participation policies.  Whether it's creating a timeline of LGBTQI+ lives - as in one project  - or designing a poster for 'hard to reach' participants, or a book cover to match and capture the varied contents, Samia's creative energy and talent shines though: difficult issues are represented in their complexity, with great care and craft."

- Yvette Taylor, Research Director, School of Education, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland.

"Samia is a pleasure to work with, her creative and technical skills are exceptional. We worked together to produce a series of motion graphics around gender based violence data for United Nation Population Fund in Eastern Europe. Samia looked at the brief from several different angles, offering insightful solutions that brought the data to life to help engage different audiences. She was kind and professional in her approach. I thought her drawings were phenomenal."

-Patrick Shepherd, UNFPA & Elephant Song Media, London, UK.

"I was fortunate to be able to work with Samia on a collaborative illustrated short story project in 2020-2021. The project brought together academic researchers and practitioners/members from a domestic workers' rights organisation in Kolkata. Samia came on board at the workshop stage and truly helped bring our ideas and story to life. Samia is supremely talented and working with her was a brilliant, enriching experience for us all. Thank you Samia!"

- Lauren Wilks, PhD Sociology, University of Edinburgh, Scotland.

"Samia has a special talent. You can describe a complex concept, and she knows just how to create powerful and engaging images. These images are more than visual interpretation, they actively aid the process of research and create new ways of seeing issues. She has been an absolute pleasure to work with, I’ve been lucky to have her insight not just illustrate some of my work, but illuminate my understanding. She is simply outstanding."

- Dr. Churnjeet Mahn, Deputy Associate Principal, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland

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Photo Credit: Kazuhiko Monden 

Door to Asia, Japan

I am grateful to be part of a think tank of Asian designers who are working to improve disaster affected businesses through design and intersectional collaboration. Read more

Editorial Illustrations have always fascinated me. What can illustration bring to the table so that when put together, the story and the illustrations have more impact on the reader.

All Too Much: The Absurdity of the Tandoori Momo, by Sharanya Deepak

There is nothing about a tandoori momo that is not unnecessary. It is a dish that takes the momo, a perfectly good steamed dumpling, rolls it in a marinade of bright orange tandoori masala, and pokes it inside a flaming tandoor. When the tandoori momo emerges from its kiln, it is charred, and bright red — a kind of dense, carb-heavy chicken tikka with a crunchy casing. The baked momo is then topped with fresh cream, chaat masala and served with mint chutney; or sometimes add-ons of hung yoghurt (Afghani tandoori momo), achar (tandoori achari momos) or mayonnaise (so far, unnamed). When eaten hot from the tandoor, the momo’s spicy outer layer cracks and spills its meat filling into an orange pool of cream. Much of its appeal lies in this showmanship, that includes spice, liquid, fire, and heat. It is a dish that unsettles Delhi's aspirational food culture ─  one of eating mild-tempered Western foods ─ with its id of flaming grills and "masalaydaar" dishes flooded with spice.

To someone that hasn’t encountered it before, or if you are not from Delhi, this can seem entirely ridiculous. “Why?” many have simply asked. One friend compares the vibe of eating a tandoori momo to the senseless adrenaline high you might get from racing someone on the main road, or downing cheap whisky. Another friend, having returned to Delhi after two years abroad, dared to dwell on the question one afternoon on her trip back home. As we waited for our plates of tandoori momos on a cold February evening, she observed the new brand of packaged sauce-bottles at the shop, and coddled her question before she posed it, anxious about the consequences. “When you think about it, why would anyone eat this? Isn’t it...too much?” 


















"I find that for myself, without exception, the more I deal with the work as something that is my own, as something that is personal, the more successful it is.”

- Marian Bantjes

fleeting stories in Gouache

I am lucky to live in Chandigarh, the most planned and green Indian city in which one is surrounded by trees. Long walks in the evenings have been crucial in keeping sane through the Covid waves. Here are a few stories from my walks & drives.

All illustrations are made using Canson watercolour paper and Gouache paints.
6x8 inches.

You can enquire more about the Covid illustration set at


Exploring the North East

The sketch for this was made in a jeep while driving up to Ziro in Arunachal Pradesh from Guwahati, Assam for a music festival. Nobody could quite say how long the drive would take. Everybody we asked had a different answer. My friend and I braced for a 7 hour drive but it ended up being close to 12 hours and to top that off we had a drunk driver who kept taking "breaks"! After getting the taxi driver out of one of his various drinking stops and banning his breaks (only in India) - to calm down, I started to sketch the magnificent tropical forest and all the signage BRO ( Border Roads Organisation :)) had put through the endless mesmerising forest. A rare long drive where you see the jungle and barely any human settlements.

Etching, Edition of 10.

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