Monday, 27 August 2012

Hemming and Hawing between Indigo and Orange

This week for me is going to be very much like the painting below and I will tell you today what makes me think so...

Painting by Dita

M is away for the whole week on a business trip and I have I&J only to myself...I am not overly good at whining but I literally have the home, work, drop-offs, pick-ups, cooking, cleaning all to myself...and I really wouldn’t mind all of that if I had M beside me...but alas he isn’t!...and to add to all of that, every time I tune into the online radio...all that the whole world is listening to seems to be Romantic Songs!
Starting from very sombre dark blue (Indigo) the colours of the painting slowly blend into brighter shades of magenta, red, orange and even yellow...very much like what I am feeling now and what I think I will be feeling when the end of this week approaches... It’s as if my normal cheerful self is being unobtrusive, meek and modest anxious to break free to the sunlit patches of happiness but hemming and hawing with the being apprehensive yet composed at the same time...
I wonder if Ma felt the same when Baba had to go on his week-long sometimes month-long work tours. Did she also have to deal with this forlorn uneasiness but still stay happy for us? When the much awaited phone call from Baba came every evening (there were no mobile phones then) ... did her feelings burst into orange and red?

Painting by Jean Baptiste Santerre (1650 – 1717, French)

Or for that matter, how did Thamma (grand-mother) deal with the pain of separation when Dada had to go to the States for several months in the 1950’s....she had no access to phones or emails and all she had to rely on was hand-written letters, the receipt of which was at the mercy of the turbulent times...I close my eyes and think....maybe after a hard day’s work...when everybody else was in bed, she would light up a candle and read those letters from Dada, shrouding herself in the aura of bright reds and oranges...coming out of her sombre, soft pedalled self and dreaming of  breaking free into the world of emphatic happiness...
 I am thankful to the modern world for SMS’, emails, face-times, webchats and all the other means of communication that makes separation so much more bearable...although the romance of hand-written letters is lost, I still feel the tinge of Orange, Pink or Red within me when I get an email or when I spend the train journey to office SMS-ing M.
How do you feel when you or your loved one has to be away on business? How do you deal with it? Do your feelings also vary between deep dark Indigo to bright Magenta and Orange?

Monday, 20 August 2012

Is RED the colour of your love?

Red to me is the colour of love...of passion...of happiness. It is the colour of quivering lips and beating hearts. It is the colour of fresh juicy strawberries, the colour of roses, the colour of red wine...The colour that automatically sets the mood of romance...and the colour that breathes joy and celebration.

Images from Google, Collage by Dita
  If I were to tell you about one moment (among numerous others eversince) when I really 'felt' the colour would definitely be when I closed my eyes to say my weddings wows. I was this young blushing bride full of dreams of her future life with her knight in shining armour...and when I closed my eyes for the final step of the wedding where M applied the 'sindur' on my forehead for the first time ever, all I could feel was a mix of emotions, I felt the love, the passion, the promise, the uncertainty, the hope, the desire....i felt RED....I dont know whether it was the colour of the sindur, or my wedding saree or the blood that rushed to my cheek and made me blush....but i definitely felt was magical...the feeling of one dream coming true and building many others at the same time...the feeling of desire and contentment at the same time!

Images from Google, Collage by Dita
 I painted the one below to celebrate the colour also raises the question of Red's relation with Black in my mind and I will speak about that another time...Till then keep reading and do let me know what you feel about RED...

Painting by Dita

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Saffron, White and Green

The 3 colours that dominate all sphere's on this special day, in the life of an Indian are Saffron, White and Green...yes I am talking about the Indian Independence Day...and this year we are celebrating 65 years of Independence...

Wikipedia defines Independence as a condition of a nation, country, or state in which its residents and population, or some portion thereof, exercise self-government, and usually sovereignty, over the territory. To me however this term now means much, much more than this! I can’t help but quote Rabindranath Tagore here as what I feel cannot be put in better words than his own...

Image from Google

Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high
Where knowledge is free
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments
By narrow domestic walls
Where words come out from the depth of truth
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee
Into ever-widening thought and action

Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.

I get goose bumps every time I read those eyes fill up and I experience this immense overwhelming emotion within that I cannot describe in words...but if I were to put colours to those thoughts they would definitely be Saffron, White and Green!...
They remind me of one special journey back home with my grandfather (DADA) on the eve of Independence Day back in 1997. There were events planned in all the Community Centres, Schools, Institutions, and Colleges...everywhere... Everybody was celebrating 50 yrs of Indian Independence. Even I was very excited about all the festivities that were to happen at school the next day...Dada, like his normal self was also very thrilled about all that was happening around us...but suddenly the smile faded a little and he seemed to be lost in thoughts...on being asked what happened he said to me that he could see in front of him the same day in 1947 as if it happened just yesterday...He did not say any further! Today I realise what he meant by that...I can now, while madly punching at my keyboard, see the events of 1997 happening right in front of me....I can see the bright eyes of the teenager at school all excited about the events, proud to be the flag-bearer...happy, joyfull and full of dreams! And what makes me glad today is that I am still the dreamer that I was 15 yrs back...
Work-in-Progress Painting by Dita

Friday, 10 August 2012

Absorb a moment of happiness with ORANGE!

Photo and Painting by Dita

 A friend came back from a trip to Door Country with such beautiful pictures of ‘Fall’...a time when all the leaves turn into flowers... And then in one of the pictures, like magic, the colour on the leaves seemed to have escaped to colour the sky behind them....the Sun was setting in the horizon shrouding the trees with eternal mystery...and the darkness was slowly engulfing the branches one steady step at a time...that’s what I tried to capture in this painting of mine...
What colour do you see when you close your eyes to absorb a moment of happiness? I see Orange! The cheerful, stimulating and charming ORANGE! The colour that has this undefined warmth without being aggressive...the colour that is exciting and engaging...the colour that stimulates the fire within you and encourages you to reach the heights without pushing you over the edge! Orange to me relates to the warm fuzzy feeling within me...whether it is what I feel when I&J give me their tightest hug ever or when M makes me a cup of tea on a lazy Sunday morning or when Ma sends me a message saying “Proud of you Buru”!

Even nature associates the colour Orange with wholesomeness and desirability. Different nourishing and delicious foods are orange, like squashes, pumpkin, carrots, sweet potatoes and citrus fruits.  In fact, in the English language, the word ‘orange’ dates to the introduction of the fruit which gave the colour its name. Before then, the colour had been known as ‘geoluhread’, or yellow-red!
Photo Courtsey:
Orange or more specifically Deep Saffron is the most used colour in Hinduism historically and culturally. It is the most commonly worn colour for religious ceremonies and has been so for more than 2000 yrs. The colour signifies courage, sacrifice and the spirit of renunciation and was therefore my obvious choice for the background of the painting below. I will talk all about this favourite patchwork painting of mine in another post because like all other paintings of mine, this one also has a story which is very close to my heart!

Painting and Photo by Dita

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Snow White...

Apologies for moving away from my Rainbow Collection for a bit today but I desperately want to speak to you about WHITE. Ishaan turned 5 last Friday and we went to the mountains to celebrate this milestone! It was a lot of fun there for us and the kids with good friends, good food and a lot of snow!

Ishaan and his Toboggan! Pic by Manas Ray

The pristine fresh WHITE everywhere was like magic. The bright sun against the white blanket of snow and the twinkling eyes of I and J was like a trilogy made in heaven! The sparkling little crystals almost literally reflected the happy and joyfull heart of my innocent little five year old... and I could not help but go back down memory lane to that winter in Chicago now almost 6 yrs back when I first knew that I was going to be a mom! I could almost touch the growing wave of emotion within and shed just a few tears of joy when I was brought back to reality...a pair of little ice-cold hands were pulling and poking me, trying to get my attention...Jiya wanted some help with the toboggan! A little push and there I was dreaming again...This time of the family holiday that I spent with Bonuram about 15 years back at Tshangu Lake in Sikkim, India. That was the first time we had ever experienced snow in real life! I could hear us giggling and shouting and throwing snow balls at each other untill M actually threw a snow ball at me....I quickly retaliated the move and moved on...What was the snow doing to me? It was like my own personal time-machine bringing back memories so full of life of fun-times that I have was playing was taking advantage of my vulnerable set of emotions and making me nostalgic and happy at the same time...

Tshangu Lake Pic Coutrsey:

White to me has almost the same meaning as it has to the world. It is pure, pristine, clean and ...neutral....and I have recently discovered that white funnily enough, also acts like a time-machine! Well I am not sure whether it was the colour white or the snow but it has definitely given me a very good idea for my next collection. I will try to keep the idea to myself for now but will share with you this picture...keep guessing!

Pic Courtesy: Google