Category : Warli

Woodooz is keeping me busy, so much so that I am delaying posting my already completed works - Like this name board for instance. But before we talk about it, just want to do a quick check on if you have subscribed to my YouTube Channel. If you haven't, please take a moment to go here and do it right now. You would certainly make me super happy. 

Meanwhile, we realized that our old Name Board was outdated with the new addition in the family. And so started the wooden DIY name board project. I delayed this so much that I had to have it installed just in time for the 2nd Birthday.

Remember how Preethi has been experimenting with Kerala / Chetinad style of decor ? We wanted to infuse the same elements in the name board too. Wood was a unanimous choice. Loads of texture, rose wood color, the elephants and bells were Preethi's touches.

Name board DIY
Wooden Name Board

Warli has always inspired us. The simplicity in the use of geometric shapes to construct alluring images of people has always interested us and that these images were already on the wall only helped us. We are still working on adding more elements to the entrance, but for now, glad that we would get all the members of the family on board, literally.

Warli wall painting
Warli at entrance

Being part of a Woodworking community has been a great source of inspiration and information for me. That I could make a board from out of wooden sticks is something I learnt from the forum. That I can use stickers for the names is also something I found out through an avid DIYer in the forum. If you are looking at interacting with like minded individuals, you should check the Facebook DIY Woodworking group dedicated for the Indian DIYers.

The wooden beadings were glued together to form the board using Wood adhesive.I didn't have clamps and so just used pressure from heavy books to hold them together until it dried. You can look for videos on how cutting boards are made to have a better understanding.

Teak wod strips
Plywood beadings

Staining wood
Stained wood

I took the plank to the nearby shop where they fix car / bike number plates. And he was happy to get the names done for a cost. The elephants and bells were bought online to add the Kerala flavor to the entrance.

Name board
Make your own Name Board
There are few more works that are pending to be posted here. But am working on something here on Woodooz that is eating away most of my time. I am really excited about it and I hope to share the news with you very soon. Until then, please please wish me the best of luck.

About the artist and author of this post: Ranjani Chandran is an amateur hobbyist. She loves painting, especially focusing on indian folk art and she tries and reuses as many discards as she can to upcycle them into intriguing pieces of work. She is also a foodie who loves to cook. She has been learning carnatic vocal music as a part of Mathrubrundam, an initiative by Dr. Seetha Rajan. She also likes photography, swimming and is currently learning kalari payattu which she finds very addictive. All this comes later! She has a humble home and two boys that she loves supremely !

Wood is one of the most interesting materials I have worked with after terracotta. That it had scope to be transformed into a piece of art is something I  stumbled upon by accident.

Carpentry work was happening at home and I was all alone watching over the house. Strewn with tools, pieces of reapers and cut out wastes of 6MM ply, fevicol, nails… and to inspire me my carpenter was perfect and patient with measurements and design. Watching his precision tingled a thought in my mind.

I picked up the pencil, scale and the 6MM ply, and drew six 4-inch square boxes. Then I picked up his hacksaw when he was out for lunch and cut them out. My hands were killing me but the achievement factor kept me going. I had six pieces. Next I sandpapered it all to get a smooth finish on all four sides.  

He came back and his jaw dropped to see me do something so crazy! 

Now that I had the pieces, I decided to experiment with paints. This is how my journey started and Maya- Craving to create was born. Now, its my fourth year as a hobbyist and I can say that I am comfortable with a lot of media after so many experiments and the spirit to stop wastage.

I would like to share with you how I go about this process and encourage you to try it too. Why? Because I think today recycling is a very important concept and ply wood can be beautifully recycled. Also we are now so equipped with supplies that experimenting will not really cost us much, on the other hand it gives us a moral boost – chance to feel like a five year old all over again.

Keep a few things in mind before you venture into this for a better understanding.
  • Make sure the piece is cut out properly. For eg: edges should have a precise 90 degree angle on all sides.
  • Sandpapering all the sides is very important. This will give it the required smoothness. An 80 or 100 grade sandpaper will do the job for plys or all kinds, 4MM to 1-inch. Sandpaper is available in any plywood shop.
  • Always apply termite control oil and leave the piece of wood for drying at least for 24 hours before starting art work on it. Termite oil is a tin bottle you can get in any shop that sells ply wood boards. It costs around Rs 80.
  • Use water only to wash off paint from the brush. Else wood will absorb water and tend to warp over a period of time.
  • Make sure paints are fresh. If they are old and thick then they can be used as base paint.  When you paint the base make sure you also paint the sandpapered area so that the remaining frays on the sides get further smoothened by the smeared paint.
  • There are two ways to look at painting wood. One is to retain the texture of it and give it the grainy look and the other is to quote it with at least three layers of base paint and make it look like a smooth surface. 
    • After the base paint (acrylic) is done you can compose your picture in it either directly or using a carbon copy. 
    • All painting rules apply here too. Only advantage is acrylic can be corrected, that is, painted over. However, this has a drawback. It leaves a sticky finish on the surface.
    • In the end giving it a quote of varnish will make sure the piece of art remains in tact for a significant period of time. Either your carpenter will be able to do it for you or you can buy yourself varnish aerosol cans from any art supply store.
      MDF can also be painted on, the only thing is you need to make sure absolutely no water gets in contact with MDF, before during or after the process of painting it. The advantage in MDF is that it can be machine cut into various shapes allowing such a large scope for creativity in terms of art work on it and the usage of that item.

      Why wood is close to my heart is because it is versatile. It can be used as a base to stick tiles on. It can be used as a frame for a mirror. Photo frames can be made out of up-cycled wood. Glass paintings can be framed with pieces of wood where in you can continue the concept on two different textures. Tea coasters can be made out of small pieces of ply. Pebbles can be affixed on wood because it can bear the weight.

      Although it took me more than two months to finish I enjoyed every minute I spent on it.

      Get up and grab you piece of waste wood from the nearest ply wood show room and try your hand at it!

      A triangle, a circle, a square and some lines.  The tribal women of Maharashtra used just these figures to create a traditional folk art popularly known as Warli.

      These paintings depict the social life of these tribes and are predominantly painted in white on mud walls. As is evident from many Warli paintings you may come across, they portray human figures that are dancing, farming, hunting or indulging in other such regular activities.
      Now, why am I talking about Warli all of a sudden ? I recently noticed Warli art in the walls of my favorite restaurants in Chennai, and I was mighty impressed at where and how they had used it. Considering I found it in a space where I least expected to see an ancient art, I wanted to share it here. Even from the central figure in the art below, I can bet my bottom dollar that you cannot guess where the below picture was taken.
      Wall art using Warli
      Warli art on the wall
      Would it surprise you if I said I clicked this in the men's room ? I don’t know if it is any desecration of an age old art, but I sure know someone really put his / her creative mind into good use here. Seeing this, I could not stifle my chuckle, and in all the urgency I had, I managed to stop and click this picture J
      Warli Painting
      Indian Warli on a European closet
      Talking about Warli and creativity, I am reminded of Aparna of Warli-Soul and so wanted to dedicate this space to  mention her work. They say Warli does not depict mythological characters or images of deities, but here is someone who stretches her imagination to create beautiful art out of the same Triangles, Circles and squares.
      Indian art Indian God
      Radha and Krishna on Warli - By Aparna
      I so love niche blogs and I believed Warli as a niche had very limited scope for variety. I have time and again been proven otherwise by her work. She is a trained Warli artist who portrays these stick figures in newer, modern backdrops. Patricia of Colours Dekor also carried a feature of this lovely blog under the blog finds category. I strongly recommend that you check her blog Warli-soul to know what I am talking about. 
      Warli Painting - by Aparna

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      Meanwhile, I am going to have Preethi do a Warli on one of the walls at home. Help me convince her :)

      You may also be interested in

      Linking in : Colours Dekor
      - Somu

      Though, when I bought the terracotta pot, I had intentions of adding color to it, I had not planned on anything particular. I first painted the whole pot red (oil paint) and when I was looking for designs to complete the look I desired, I chanced upon Warli painting at Coloursdekor.
      Warli Pot Painting
      It seemed simple, and yet very charming. After a little bit of research and reading up, I decided to do the Warli for my waiting-to-be-finished pot. The activity, besides being lots of fun, also ended up giving my pot a really chic look. Considering it is made using very simple shapes, it is most certainly something everyone should give a shot at. Now am happy to move my pot from the balcony, right into the living room where everyone can see it.
      - Somu

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