Thursday, November 15, 2012

Rangoli 2012

Hello! Wish you all a very happy new year!
Here is the picture of my final Rangoli of Mother Teresa at a portrait rangoli exhibition with the Kala Chhand rangoli group, Thane.

Close-up images:

We were free to select any subject/theme. I decided to do Mother Teresa again.

I was asked to increase the difficulty level of rangoli this year and had to do a little more than just one figure/portrait like i did last year- <link>. So I had to have a nice composition too!

I could either have had two portraits, one in color and the other one would be monochromatic or black and white. But then I felt it was too ambitious for this time... So I decided to symbolize her love for every living being showing two hands freeing the bird.

So here are the images of how I started and how it took shape:

Day 1:
We were given three days to complete this rangoli. Because I had been working with paper and clay for a couple of months and learning new craft, I took considerably more time to sketch the portrait and compose the whole picture. Ideally I should have had the sketch ready so that on day 1,  I can paste, and get started with the colors.. But whenever I switch between the mediums, it takes me a lot of time to get used to working with a different medium. And somehow this time, I had a feeling that I had become super slow.. mind was pre-occupied and I took a lot longer to sketch simple figures.. So on my first day I just managed to finish the sketch late in the evening, rushed to the place, and pasted my sketch on the floor. Was too tired to prepare the colors/shades that day and rushed back home after pasting the sketch.

Day 2:
Started post lunch. Took about a couple of hours to prepare the basic shades.

The practice is to start filling up the area from the top left corner and then finish off at the right bottom corner.

Managed to do the eyes that day.

Day 3:
I started post lunch, around 2 pm. And was very slow at everything.. 
I got a feedback that the skin looked very dark and it had to have a little pinkish shade to make it look closer to the character. And so I removed the colors around the eyes carefully with a paint brush.

Prepared new shades for the skin color, adding more pinkish red to the yellows and browns plus white.

New shades!
After preparing the shades, it took a lot of time for me to convince myself that yes!! this is all going to look fine!!! I asked everyone around, if the new shades were fine and if I could start without spoiling the work. As it was the last day, I had no option but to stay back until I finish my full rangoli. I had to just get started as quickly as possible.

I knew in the beginning that it would be a little difficult for me to complete this rangoli and that it could be a little stressful, but then the character itself inspires. You remember what she said, and that gives you new energy to think positive and continue to do what you are doing. I have always had a lot of respect for her because there was no difference between her words and her deeds. I can only imagine how strong and sensitive the heart needs to be! to be able to see all the pain and sufferings and to love unconditionally… 

Patience is all that is needed! really. The room is so hot and after a while you feel tired sitting with legs folded… 
One of her quotes kept me focussed:
"Not all of us can do great things. But we all can do small things with great love". 
-Mother Teresa.

It was midnight by the time I finished the teeth and the face. Then the drapery took a lot longer than I expected.

The reference picture of pigeon had too many details in the feathers and the wings.. So I decided to make a simple pigeon that people can identify with fewer details. 

It was already 7.30 am on the inauguration day (4th day) and I still had to color the hands. Was too tired to do it! So thought of dropping them to finish off rangoli by filling that area with dark background.. But then Yogesh, whose rangoli was next to mine in the room, insisted to complete hands and not leave things unfinishd.. His works are brilliant! chk his amazing Gulzar rangoli here.

So with a couple of chai breaks, and nice breakfast, managed to do those hands with moderate level of detailing.  It was the first time after IDC days that I worked on something for about 20-21 hours at a stretch.

For the text, there's a calligraphy artist who has written quotes and nice things for everybody - for all the rangolis in the exhibition. I totally love the way it's been written!

In 2009 I made this rangoli of mother teresa at home. I did use the same quality of colors, but there wasn't anyone to tell me how to go about it. 

This year, I am happy with the progress I made. It is only possible if you have people who can point out your mistakes, give feedback, inspire you, motivate you, help you! And I am so SO glad that I am getting this opportunity to put rangoli with such fine artists and learn from them. Learning form the right people who can guide you and knowing the right techniques- both are equally important!

Hope you enjoyed reading the post and the process. Thanks for coming by! 
The exhibition is open till 23rd November. 10 am to 10 pm. New Girls school, Ram Maruti road, Thane west. Do try to come if you are around! :)

I am including the following two pictures that I found on the net, containing beautiful quotations by Mother Teresa.


A lot of people have mailed me asking for the address of the shops that sell these lake colors. So here is the address:

1. Mangal Jyot: Get off at Kari road station, take the east bridge, and take right turn outside the bridge. Ask someone about Bharat Mata theatre. The shop that sells lake colors is right opposite the theatre. You've to cross the road.

The second shop is in Masjid Bandar. Right opposite Jama masjid, sheikh memon street zaveri bazar
The name of the shop is Enayat.