Many of these East Bengal refugees practiced different crafts for livelihood generation. Watching shell bangle makers, idol and doll craftsmen and clay potters, Sen got involved with clay modeling. He used to spend more time drawing and painting than in his school studies. Subhinoy, an artist friend of his parents who lived outside the refugee camp, inspired Sen to hone his drawing skill. However, he advised Sen never to become an artist to avoid ultimately dying in poverty as his experience was that art has no future in India.