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“Every Vintage Car Has a Story Which I Share Through My Art” – Meet Rupali Prakash, an Illustrator and Vintage Car Collector From Bangalore

Rupali Prakash, from Bangalore, is a woman of many talents, to say the least! She is an illustrator and the founder of Classic Chase, a company that restores and rents out vintage cars. She combined her two passions—art and vintage cars—to illustrate vintage cars and keep them alive in the form of art, which is a crucial part of Classic Chase.

She creates handcrafted merchandise and even works with groups like the Federation of Historic Vehicles of India (FHVI) and with vintage car clubs around the world, both as an automotive illustrator and as a youth adviser. This dynamic woman from Bangalore has got the world on her mind.

Get to know her better as we chat about how she manages to find balance and inspiration for her many projects. 

Say hello to Rupali!

  • Hey Rupali, it’s great to have you here! Please introduce yourself to our readers.

I’m a Punjadiga (half Punjabi & half Kannadiga) and have spent my whole life on a farm with my parents and younger sister on the outskirts of Bangalore. After doing UG from Christ College, I went to the UK to do my Masters in Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management from the University of Warwick. I worked in several organisations before starting my entrepreneurial journey. Currently, I work as an illustrator, and also run Classic Chase.

  • You’ve found your passion in vintage cars and also illustrations. How did that happen?

Friends and Family with a 1907 locomobile.

Well, I grew up around vintage cars and have always been attached to them. On the other hand, I discovered my passion for illustrations when I was 26! After watching a friend of mine illustrate, I felt that I needed to learn the art form to be able to share my stories and ideas. So, at 26, I quit my job and started teaching myself how to illustrate. I began putting up my work on social media and started getting projects. 

I have always been passionate about vintage cars. I used to watch my father transform old rustic cars into timeless vehicles and started developing a really strong emotional bond with all the cars as I watched them come to life.

“With time I realised that I wanted the rest of the world, especially the youth to know more about Vintage and Classic Cars in order to help preserve and protect them for future generations. As a result, my art became a medium through which I shared my passion.”

After learning illustrations, I began illustrating and printing merchandise like t-shirts, mugs, cushion covers, bags and so on with vintage car and bike prints. And today, I’ve moved to more interesting products with historic automotive prints, which I sell to classic car clubs across the world.

One of her fun illustrations


Growing up with vintage vehicles. – Mercedes-Benz Sammler

  • As you mentioned, your childhood was spent with family, vintage cars and a lot of nature. How has that affected your approach towards life?

I am a result of all the wonderful experiences I have been through and the most amazing people I have around me.  Growing up on the farm, away from the rest of the world, helped me become comfortable with who I am, without worrying about external judgement. So today I have the confidence to stand by my beliefs irrespective of what comes my way.

My parents brought us up with certain strong values. They taught me to have faith in myself, to be grateful and work hard. Driving Vintage Cars has taught me to have an open mind, show compassion, patience and be calm in the face of a storm.

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Thrilled to have had the opportunity to design the logo of ‘The Federation of Historic Vehicles of India’! Excited and honoured to be a part of a movement that’s set to unite the entire country over a common passion and purpose of preserving and protecting historic vehicles, for generations to come! If you have a vintage/ classic car or bike club and want to join us to ensure that these magnificent machines can still be driven on the roads in the near future, DM us for more details. 😊 . . . . . #fhvi #federationofhistoricvehiclesofindia #federation #historicvehicles #vintagecars #classiccars #india #fiva #logodesinger #logo #automotiveillustrator #illustrator #carart #cargirls #classiccarsofindia

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  • You do automotive illustrations and run classic chase which is more structural. You also do fun animated characters which is more fluid and creative. How do switch between both and find balance?

I love working on multiple things at once! It is what drives me and keeps my creativity alive. When there’s a low in one of my businesses, the high from the other pulls me out. The multiple perspectives I gain also helps my creativity grow and evolve.

But more importantly, having multiple sources of revenue gives me the luxury to choose when it comes to taking on new projects – even when it could be a little risky. 

Furthermore, I have personally seen the advantage of having a diversified portfolio. All that being said, it does get tough at times but it helps me become more resilient. 

A unique perspective in each picture

Inspiration comes from everyday adventures!

  • What keeps you inspired and what’s your work philosophy like?

My inspiration comes from everyday life, all my little adventures! As far as work philosophy goes, I do have a few things that I believe in very strongly.

“I believe that you need to enjoy the process, then you will automatically love the result. If you want others to believe in you, you need to believe in yourself first. You might have to course correct dozens of times and that’s absolutely fine because it means you’re adapting and growing.”

Above everything is taking care of your mental health. Make sure to do everything possible to keep your mind happy. Balancing work and play is very very crucial. 

Working on an illustration

A positive habit that I absolutely love!

Every night before I go to sleep, I write down 3 nice things about my day irrespective of how it was. We all have a tendency to forget the little things so I have something called a ‘Happiness Box’. Whenever I see or experience something nice, even if it’s as small as a stranger smiling at me, I write it on a piece of paper, fold it up and put it in. And whenever things seem like they’re not going as planned, I open up these boxes and realize how much I have to be grateful for. And this is turn restores my faith that everything happens for a reason. 

  • What projects are you currently working on?

These are the major projects I’m working on:

  1. The launch of my new brand Delali, which will be a series of Silk Scarves with illustrations of our Vintage Automotive Adventures. 
  2. The designing of the artwork and collateral for the upcoming event, the FHVI Royal Classic Dasara Drive to Mysore 2019, which will have participants from around the world.
  3. Working on a first-ever Historic Automotive dining experience, Travel Through Time, under Classic Chase.
  4. Illustrating a Save the Date for a lovely couple from Pune.

The Tour De Paris, 1930 Delage Silk Scarf designed by Rupali – inspired by the beautiful Ochre coloured Delage that once belonged to the Maharaja of Holkar. Model: Miss India Universe 2016 – Roshmitha Harmimurthy

  • Any message you’d like to give to our readers?

All of us are passionate about something. We need to have the courage to find it, the faith to know that we can make it happen.

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