We are back with one more mom in the series Creative moms. Introducing Jayashree Mahapatra, a self-taught artist from Bangalore. She started painting as a hobby and later it became her passion and profession. Let’s get to know her more through this interview.
Interview with the Artist Jayashree Mahapatra
What is your background?
It’s a pleasure to talk to you. When I look back it has been a fantastic journey from academics to corporate to the everenchanting field of art. As you know, I have done my Post Graduation in Personnel Management and Labour Welfare plus a Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing Management. Initially, I was heading the Regional Computer Centre of BITS (I) Ltd and its placement cell in Kolkata and then had our own start-up venture “ Netsoft”
( IT Services) before we moved to Bangalore in the year 2000. Then I got a chance to pursue my dream in the field of art. Apart from being an Art educator and Art Facilitator for many years, I design jewelry for friends, make hand-painted home décor items, take up commissioned art, love doing DIY projects, upcycle lots of waste reusable products. I also support an orphanage in Bhubaneswar through my fundraising Art workshops for charity. Even participated in Art Exhibitions to support a cause like Art Cancer etc. Being interested in music, art, dance, creative writing took active participation in cultural activities of apartment complexes I lived in over the years which gave me great platforms to showcase my creativity.
I am Mom to two grown-up boys who are Engineers working abroad, my pillars of strength. I do the optimum utilization of my ‘ME’ time with their encouragement. My hubby, my biggest motivator has been a Management professional who worked with large Corporates with a global presence due to which we got the opportunity to become avid travelers and knowledge about art forms and culture of different places about which I write.
When did you start painting?
I started painting in childhood as a hobby and used to enjoy experimenting with colors. Did a few oil paintings while in college. Then there was a long gap before the creative bug hit me again in the year 2000. I resumed my artistic journey with full vigor. Initially, there was chaos in my mind but slowly my plans started falling in place. I started walking on the path of self-exploration, trying out new mediums and styles, attending few short-term workshops, honing my skills, and most importantly sharing my knowledge with participants of different age groups. This really helped me to gather expertise in different art forms and reach higher levels. I did not realize when my hobby became a passion, then profession, and now my lifestyle. Journey though not an easy one has been very enriching and fulfilling.
Did you go to any professional college to learn art?
I did not go to any professional art college. I should say never got the opportunity. Mostly I am a self-taught artist. I always believed Consistency brings Perfection. Art is all around us. We have to observe, imagine and create without fear in the mind. Mary Angelou said, ‘ You cannot use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.’ Believing in myself over the years I have become an Expert Fevicryl Professional and also trained in Global Art Style.
What is your favorite Artwork from your own work and why?
It was on my wish list to do a collab with a poet. Recently it was fulfilled. We tried a fusion of Art and Poetry. Or you can say a collab of two powerful tools – brush and the pen. My painting was done in Bani-Thani style. Poetry by my friend Pragnya expressed the turmoil in the heart and mind, delicate thoughts of the decked up lady whom I presented as an epitome of beauty. I felt as though the painting came alive and had a tale to tell.
What is the favorite part of all the work you do and why?
Becoming an artist was not what I had planned. It just happened. Looking back I can say it’s the best thing that could happen in my life. It gave me the opportunity to be creative every single day, be my own boss, has flexibility in working hours, spread joy and happiness in others’ lives by sharing my skills, continuously learn and grow and above all keep my mind calm.
Where do you get the inspiration for all the work you do?
Initially, I used to get inspiration by reading books on Great Masters like Van Gogh, Claude Monet, etc. Nowadays I find inspiration in life around me, i.e when I travel, be amidst nature, visit museums, exhibitions, and even in my abode. I take my own photos and use them as references. Wherever you get inspired, you should carve your own style of art with innovative techniques.
What is the most important tip to other artists or mompreneurs?
In this field, there are no shortcuts. Do something creative every single day. I reiterate practice brings perfection. Be ready to experiment, try something different even if you are not sure it will work. You can still explore, make mistakes and have fun, and enjoy the process. Van Gogh said, “ Have the courage to attempt.” Then you grow faster. Make your journey a continuous process of learning and sharing.
What is your vision? Any future plans?
I have always tried to connect Art and charity since I started my work. My vision is to create more affordable Art, hold exhibitions, take my charity work forward and bring about a difference in society. Efforts of creating a website in the process.
Secondly, I don’t want to be confined to a particular technique or an Art form but for me, Art should be a spontaneous overflow of ideas or images formed in the mind.
I wish, “ Every sunrise should bring me hope
Every sunset should bring me peace.”
Thank you, Jayashree for taking out time to share your journey with us. It would be inspiring for many moms.
Check out Jayashree’s Instagram page – https://instagram.com/jaysmahapatra
You can contact artist Jayashree Mahapatra at firstname.lastname@example.org
Read about previously featured creative moms here- Monika, Shiva, Soma, Ritika, Sudha, Rina, Shipra, Anuja, Preethi, Surbhi, Debjani, Megha Sushma Shilpi Anupriya Anupama Charu, Prakriti and Ann to get inspired.
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