Key Takeaways:

As a child, Neeta loved arts and crafts. Nearly 20 years ago, she decided to begin painting, and the results are beautiful. With her business well-established, Neeta hopes to learn new marketing techniques from the Startup Accelerator Program to make more online sales.

How it started

"I have been interested in arts and crafts since I was a child. I used to paint on canvas, but in 2005 I took up porcelain painting. A couple of my friends attended porcelain art classes, and I joined them."

At the time, Neeta still worked as the department head of a local children's playschool. She held this position for over a decade. Eventually, it felt stagnant because there was no room to grow. So she quit. In doing so, she could finally turn her attention toward painting. People already appreciated her work, and now that she had more time to devote to the art, she could sell her pieces. 

The art

She says Chinese porcelain painting is a dying art. Most people prefer canvas painting because porcelain paints are hard to come by. Neeta imports her colors. The porcelain itself must also be high quality or the finished work becomes ashy and is prone to breaking. Once painted, pieces require at least three firings at 800 degrees Celsius. "The more depth you want to give the painting, the more you have to fire." 

Neeta recently finished a Shrinathji painting which required six firings. It takes about 6-8 hours on average to create a piece. Over the 17 years of porcelain painting, Neeta has finished over 400 pieces. Firing takes a lot of electricity, so she usually fires ten pieces at a time. One thing she loves about porcelain painting is that you can wipe off the paint and start over. With canvas or watercolor works, this is not the case. Neeta loves being able to rectify her mistakes and make the piece as beautiful as possible for clients and exhibitions. 

Making sales and learning new skills

"I do a lot of customized orders. I often get orders from mothers to customize for their kids, like a cup, a bowl, and a plate. I have done a superman and Peppa pig-themed porcelain art with the child's name. I have also made customized dinner sets." 

Neeta also takes on intricate custom orders, including the Gateway to India, Victoria memorial of Calcutta, and Howrah Bridge to Amsterdam. Customers living far from home love these detailed works of their countries.

Neeta relies on her Facebook and Instagram pages and word of mouth. Porcelain painting is a niche market with little awareness. She plans to use Startup Accelerator Program classes to improve her social media, photography, and marketing skills. Neeta especially enjoyed goal-setting classes. On top of painting, Neeta enjoys psychology (she obtained her psychology degree several years ago), running, baking, cooking, and crocheting. See Neeta's porcelain pieces here. 

Jun 7, 2022
Learner Stories
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