"…my parents… wanted me to attend a commercial college. But I didn't agree because I was in love with art."
"In the East we believe that many things come through destiny, some delightful, some not. But for me, a little girl from a rural northern village, I wanted to be myself. I wanted to fight for my love of art and it's a spirit inside me too.
"Hello, My name is Puntip Fooyat but you can call me 'Noi,' which means 'little' in Thai. I come from the Phrao district. In this rural area, I was born to a large family on May 7, 1980. I am the last of six children. My family's shop sells goods used daily in my village. When I was a child, there was no sign that someone from our family would become an artist. But when I grew up, I thought about my talent and decided to move to the city to learn art in college. And so I studied for a Bachelor's Degree at a technological institute.
"Six years later, I was staying with my sister, who had a food shop in the zoo, and my brother, who also worked at the zoo. Because my parents didn't understand why I wanted to study art they wanted me instead to attend a commercial college. But I didn't agree because I was in love with art. So I had to find the money to pay for my own education. On holidays, I worked as a guide at the zoo, describing the wildlife for tourists. And they gave me a chance to do other jobs when I had time. Because I lived at the zoo and knew everything inside, I could do my job very well. We have a panda and everyone wants to visit it, which meant more work for me. Every Sunday, I painted tattoos for tourists on the street. And so I have been able to live with no help from my parents.
"When I exhibited my student works in the gallery and presented my final works for graduation at the museum, I invited my family. They were amazed by what I had learned. They never really thought I could do it by myself.
"Now I am a reporter at a magazine dedicated to the fine arts. I attend exhibits, interview artists and write articles. It's a good job and I also have time to work on my own art at home. For the future, I am planning a group exhibition with my friends. Thanks to Novica, I have a new channel to present my art to the world."