I loved reading comics from Amar Chitra Katha as a kid, featuring several characters from Indian Mythology, revered for their unending courage, determination and never-say-die attitude even in the face of impossible obstacles. They all approached their lives with an innocent and positive attitude, representing the philosophy, "Find your purpose and go after it with all your heart."
As an Illustrator who loves mythologies from all around the world, I’ve always been fascinated by all the wonderful enamel pin projects on kickstarter (having backed a few) and have always wanted to see my designs as enamel pins. Outside of art prints, people often asked me about whether I made badges, patches or pins.
After a lot of thought and deliberation, I picked out three characters who were really close to my heart. Taking inspiration from the iconic heraldic shields designs of medieval Europe and the battle flags of warriors from Indian mythology, I set out to make my first set of Enamel Pins from Indian Mythology!
Ganesha is the elephant-headed god, responsible for good beginnings, taking care of the small problems that would upset our life (represented by the mouse at his feet) . He is revered as the foremost amongst the Gods, and is always offered the first worship. Featured in the pin is Ganesha enjoying a delicious meal of sweets and giving his blessings to all!
Hanuman is the monkey god of strength and courage. Featured in the pin is a scene from Hanuman’s story, where he was sent to the Himalayas to retrieve a magical herb. Upon reaching the sacred mountain peak, he found that he could not find the herb in time. As a solution, he grew to a giant size, uprooted the entire mountain and flew back with it.
Garuda is the eagle god of the skies. Pictured here is a scene from Garuda’s story, where he was tasked to travel to the realm of the Gods and retrieve the nectar of immortality in order to liberate his mother from slavery, which was guarded by a fiery wheel and two poisonous snakes.
Initially, I researched several UK based pin manufacturers who could make the pins, the backing cards and the plastic sleeves. However, I found all of these to be very cost prohibitive.
After a lot of asking around, I started researching enamel pin manufacturers on Alibaba and found several really good ones from China, who were all very professional in their setup and process. I shortlisted five based on the quality of pictures they had posted and sent them my designs, asking for a cost/time estimate. Out of all that responded, I went with the one who had the cheapest quote and responded the fastest. This turned out to be the best decision ever, as the pins were all perfectly made with no flaws in any of them!
The Kickstarter project was a very magical experience. It was wonderful seeing so many people, both friends and strangers, come forward to support my little project and help get these enamel pins made! Their heartwarming love and generosity encourages me want to do more and more things that delight me and others like me!
I made a lot of friends in the industry, all of whom were running similar enamel pin projects on kickstarter at the same time, by trading and exchanging my creations with them.