No disability can come in the way of Swapna’s passion for art
For Swapna Augustine, art has been a passion since childhood. One of the Kerala’s most acclaimed artists, she has thousands of art works to her credit. Swapna paints with her legs as she was born without hands. Her love for art was so deep that she refused to let disability come in the way of pursuing it.
Born in a small town called Muvattupuzha in Kerala, Swapna was four years old when she fell in love with the world of colours. She started off by experimenting with water colours and then graduated to acrylics and oil paintings. She did her graduation in history and went on to pursue a full-time career in painting.
As a kid, I was awestruck by paintings and that is how I ventured into the world of art. Initially it was just a hobby and over time it became deeper and I realized that painting was my true calling. It helped that my family understood this passion and supported me in every way. –Swapna Augustine, Painter
What makes her so remarkable is that Swapna has no formal training. It was only much later, after her talent got the attention of the group Association of Mouth and Foot Painting Artists, that Swapna received guidance from experts. She wants to impart her skills to others and in her free time teaches children.
“I want to explore more with art and I know there is much more to learn”, she says. There is plenty happening in terms of technological advancements in art and I want to learn more about that”.
Swapna was recently in Goa for an event and her work was appreciated by a much wider audience. She has won many awards across various platforms. This youngster says staying happy and positive has been key to her success.
“To all those who have a disability, I would tell them that there is nothing to be sad or upset about. If you choose to remain inside the four walls of your home, you will do that forever. There are lot of opportunities out there that you must go and grab. Many people have come up to me and said that they are inspired by what I do. That makes me very happy”, says Swapna.
Preetha Thonnakkal, a wheelchair user from Thiruvanthapuram, is an ardent admirer of Swapna’s art. “I find her work extremely inspiring and mind-blowing. I am sure it is not easy for her to paint with her legs. I hope she gets to paint more and amaze us with her works”, says Thonnakkal.
A sentiment Swapna’s many fans are sure to share.
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