Three months after completing her degree course at Mumbai’s Sir J. J. School of Arts, in October 2014 she launched her studio, Artesanía – The Clay Studio. Sejal is particularly fond of lightweight utilitarian pottery:
“I love making thin, lightweight pottery and enhancing the visual appeal through different types of glazes, glaze effects and various decoration techniques. I basically make the pottery lightweight by making it as thin as possible, without compromising on its structural strength and practicality. For me, the lighter a piece is, the easier it is to use on a regular basis. When you are buying pottery, the first thing you do is pick it up. If the piece is thick and heavy, it just becomes inconvenient to fill it up with food and drinks and struggle with the weight of it every day.”
In the last few years, studio pottery has really bloomed in India. It is being recognized more and more as an art form, rather than just a craft. To market her pieces, Sejal takes part in various Potter Markets all over India and also exhibits her work in art galleries. With e-commerce and social media being the way it is today, it has become very easy for artists to share their art with the world:
“I market my pieces on various websites that focus on promoting and selling handicrafts directly from the artists. I also keep updating my Facebook and Instagram pages with images of ongoing projects and new art pieces.”
“I started on a very small scale, so the financial aspect of it was not a big issue. The main challenge was sourcing the quality raw materials, – Sejal admits. – that were required to achieve the results I wanted. But the best part about turning your passion into your profession is that, in spite of the setbacks and the problems, you are ultimately doing something that you love, and something that makes you happy and content. That makes up for all the hurdles that come your way.”
Read this story in POOL 81.