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Kalamkari art is the ancient style of hand painting is from the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Literal meaning of Kalamkari, Kalam which means pen and Kari which refers to craftsmanship, which is derived from a Persian word. This art is Ancient about 3000 years back. Kalamkari art designs are generally by free hand using pen and further filling completly done with hand. As a digital artist i am doing all arts in Ipad.

There are two identifiable types of Kalamkari art: Srikalahasti and Machilipatnam. In Srikalahasti Kalamkari style it involves dyed hand painting of the fabrics. The unique or distinctive feature of this particular style is that its artists draw the Kalamkari designs free hand with the use of the ‘kalam’ or the pen. The process first involves the artisans treating the cloth with a mordant and then they begin sketching the outline of the design with black color. Since each and every design is hand drawn and painted free style, each and every piece of Kalahasti kalamkari is unique in its own way. And the main design inspiration is Hindu Mythology.

Kalamkari outline is drawn with burn tamarind stick. Artists use special pen, bamboo stick with thread wrap around it to fill colors. The colors used in making these paintings are organic. Most of the colors are prepared using parts of plants – roots, leaves along with mineral salts of iron, tin, copper, alum, etc., which are used as mordants.

Machilipatnam Kalamkari style also known as Pedana Kalamkari and it isn’t exactly pen craft as it involves block painting on a fabric. The designs are already hand carved on wooden blocks, which are then printed on the fabric and then filled in with vegetable dyes. The popular motifs for Machilipatnam Kalamkari are flowers, creepers and leaf designs. 


Pic is from Google.


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