Shweta Mistry

Shweta Mistry

Creation of Shweta Mistry Designs

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Shweta Mistry Designs - How did it come about?

Shweta Mistry Designs – How Did it Come About?

Many famous artists like Yves Kline, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, J.M.W. Turner, Paul Gaugin, Josef Albers and Anish Kapoor to name a few, throughout the History of Art have their own stories about their obsession with colour. Here is how my obsession with it has lead me to create Shweta Mistry Designs.

This passion for colour began when I got my hands on a copy of  ‘Artists’ Pigments c.1600-1835′ by R.D Harley.  I had just started my Masters, when I picked it from a pile of withdrawn books for sale in the art school library. I want to take you along my life-changing journey of colours since reading this book.

Colour is core to Shweta Mistry Designs which I will highlight how in this first journal.

Shweta Mistry Designs sampling of pigments for textile designs

Sampling of pigments

From Colours to Pigments

The knowledge and techniques that I learned in world famous art schools (e.g. France, India, Scotland) equipped me to create works of art and understanding of art history. When I came across the R.D Harley’s book, it took me down a new path into pigments. The mere colours within the paint box were then translated into stories and narratives.            

There are four types of pigments – minerals, earth, organic and alchemical. 

  • Minerals – Pigments which are made from mineral rocks and stones ‘extracted’ from below the surface of the earth, like lapis lazuli.                               
  • Earth – Pigments which are made from earth’s surface deposits like yellow ochre and red ochre.       
  • Organic – Pigments which are made from plants, animals or insects such as red lac, indigo.       
  • Alchemical – Pigments which are made by a chemical process hinglu (orange), cinnabar (red).

For example, Cinnabar is a mineral pigment. It is widely used in Pahari, Kangra and Guler paintings in 16th and 17th century North India. It is said that, at a point in the history of pigments, Cinnabar was more precious than gold. Cinnabar is found in J.M.W. Turner’s paintbox displayed at Tate Modern.  At Shweta Mistry Designs, I have created classic, timeless stripes with Cinnabar in a luxury, cotton velvet.

How Shweta Mistry Designs Paints Delicate Line Work

Watch the video below to illustrate how Shweta Mistry Designs creates delicate line work for illustrative textile designs. Using natural Red Lac organic pigment, an ancient, rare process learned form a Master of Indian Painting, you can see me create my intricate line work.

There is much speculations and controversies around certain pigment colours which I will expand upon in the future journal posts.

You can learn more on Shweta Mistry Designs about page.

If you are interested in collaborating on any interior design projects, then please feel free to contact me on