Art: Bangla Coloring Book
It was a nice and sunny fall day last year. We were sitting on the grass enjoying sunshine and pecking on bits of food. My niece was sitting on top an outdoor rug filling in the white areas of the drawing in her coloring book. It was the letter "F" I think with some design wrapped around it.
Suddenly she looked up at me and asked me why there aren't any in Bangla - our mother tongue. Her mother exclaimed right then to me - why don't you make one! I was taken aback. Really? There aren't any? I asked many questions...questions that ruffled my mind....who will want this; how do I make it; how much will I charge; and who will want this!
After several days, when I was in Target I picked up this packet of beautiful set of white cardstock and started to sketch the Bangla Alphabets. I did a few with all the paisley intricacies. They were beautiful, but I soon realized that this is not feasible for completion. I needed to do this digitally if I ever want to finish and get it printed.
So I did a lot of research and invested in an iPad with the iPencil. And I started drawing. I would maybe spend an hour or two per day...some days none. It took me forever and after a lot of mistakes and learning curves I finished it in January.
I would show bits and pieces of it to a select few and they would say how beautiful it is....but I never fully showed it to anyone. I also did not have a cover page. My first print proof was a black and white cover page which simply stated the title and was spiral bound. My husband took one look at it and said where is the color! And what is this spiral?
To me a spiral bound coloring book made sense because it was foldable and easier to color. But then I started to look at the coloring books out in the market. None of them were spiral bound and the cover pages were popping with color. So then I redesigned it and got a proof printed. I knew this was it. I colored the cover page to give clues to the coloring that could happen inside of the book. It seemed funny to me that I was coloring my own coloring book that I created!
The sheer amount of support, love and praise I have received after putting my book out in the world was beyond my expectation. And I received so many great ideas following it was mind boggling. I now have a list of follow up projects that rolled like domino pieces after the book launched. I sold my first batch of books in a handful of days! It took me two days to package every single order for shipping and a select hand deliveries. I did not expect to get this busy...but it is a good busy! It makes my heart warm when I see everyone sharing their color filled books with me. As my Bangla Coloring Books travel the world I am gearing up to the next set of projects. I already have a Bangla Alphabet Art print inspired from these letters which is available in my etsy shop. I will share the other project highlights on my social media - stay tuned till then!