How a life changes after a baby only a woman knows. But it all depends on how she takes the change. Some choose to quit their jobs and be stay at home mums, while some others continue working and balance the work and home scenario.
For 26-year-old Bangalore-based Swapna Namboodiri, a BTech in Information Technology who has worked as software engineer for Infosys, taking a sabbatical after her baby arrived opened up the joys of painting and an enjoyable motherhood.
How did it all begin?
“Some great person said, ‘Coincidence is a sequence of events that although accidental seems to have been planned or arranged’, and in my personal life, Glassy Dreamz is a coincidence. I never thought of taking up art or designing as a profession. It happened all of a sudden and along with that came my ‘bundle of joy’, recalls Swapna.
During her maternity leave, Swapna got a lot of free time and started to paint like crazy. Most of the time she found herself playing with colours. After the arrival of her baby, pursuing a full-time job became a hectic option and so she decided to quit her job, which now she believes is a great leap towards her passion for glass painting and art.
She adds, “Within that short span of time I had made quite a few creations and luckily I could participate in my first ever exhibition. Good response from the customers and viewers made me more confident and that’s how ‘Glassy Dreamz’ was born.
Since childhood, Swapna loved paints and colours. Her sister happened to attend one glass painting class at a summer camp and she found it very interesting. She gave it a shot and experimented with her own ideas and designs, which introduced her to new painting techniques.
She coined the name ‘Glazzy Dreamz’ based on her own name Swapna which means dreams and so the journey began.
Swapna explains, “Earlier the main challenge faced was the availability of glasses. Several of the glass shops I tried were reluctant to give me cut glass pieces. As I started painting more, now I am able to buy large pieces of glass and with my own cutter, I create the dimension as required.
She further adds, “The other challenge is that even if I pack the glass painting neatly with bubble wrap and thermocol, the courier guys might handle it roughly. So it is a big relief if the person receives it safely. Now I am pretty happy about the packing as two of my paintings crossed the oceans and reached Australia safely.”
What makes Glassy Dreamz unique
Swapna feels that what makes her artwork stand out is the neatness that comes through that her customers find most appealing.
“Each and every product is unique sometimes by the medium being used, or by the design, size and shape, ideas and techniques which reflect on the final product and my motto for Glassy Dreamz is ‘To paint all your home decor dreams in glass’,” adds Swapna.
Her familiarity with basics of stained glass painting helped her in understanding the various techniques where instead of using paints, coloured glass that is cut into pieces can be used to fit the desired design. They are then arranged like a jigsaw puzzle which will be later soldered together to make the desired design.
Work was done so far…
“So far, I’ve participated in few exhibitions conducted by a Bangalore-based NGO AWAKE (AWAKE means Association of Women Entrepreneurs of Karnataka) and few in Karnataka Chithrakala Parishat(College of Fine arts in Karnataka. Each of these exhibitions was a huge success that has also helped me to increase my network. Most of my products are marketed through my friends, relatives and social networking sites as well,” adds Swapna.
Apart from her first love for glass painting, Swapna also dabbles in Acrylic painting, Ceramic painting, Fabric painting, Kerala Mural Painting on canvas and also fabrics, and have even tried painting on feathers.
Products and price range
Most of the products are home-decor items which include wall hangings, glass bowls, candle holders, hand painted clocks, pots, glass trays, tissue holders, name plates and Kerala murals painted on sarees, kurtis, shawls and t-shirts. Pricing for each product depends on the medium used and the complexity of the product.
Before signing off Swapna adds, “Once I was stepping out of a software firm, I thought it would be a short break, but now that started following my dreams, I realised that I won’t be going back from here. It’s my passion that has brought me till here. When I think about future, I see only colours and more colours and I hope to open my own art gallery someday. As I’m a self-taught artist I strongly believe in research and development and I will be more than happy to share my knowledge with someone interested in learning glass painting from me!”