Mayura Raksha Ready on Spoonflower

Okay, I’ve set up the whole “Mayura Raksha” collection thus far on Spoonflower — several colors in fabric mode, two in wallpaper mode. Will think about what other colors I might want to offer it in, and what sizes — maybe a much smaller size would be kind of cool for a printed shirt, or a mask? Hm.

Full collection so far (not yet available for sale, need to buy proofs, maybe a week or two):

https://www.spoonflower.com/…/471307-mayura-raksha-by…

Mayura Raksha Wallpaper

I think I managed the repeat without any little annoying white lines in the middle, yay. So, I’m not sure if there’s really any reason to design it as a repeat, rather than as a motif and have Spoonflower do a half-drop? The latter is much easier, but I *think* with a designed repeat, it’s less likely that a customer will end up with accidentally not ordering enough, but I’m just not sure. Honestly, the math of surface design kind of eludes me a lot of the time — I really do want to take a little online course for it, learn more of the basics properly.

But that said, this is the CUTEST wallpaper — “Mayura Raksha”

It’d be great in a modern South Asian-inspired home, maybe in a pretty powder room? I’m picture lots of white Victorian furniture (pedestal sink, etc.), and a bunch of hanging greenery. It’s also be delightful in a conservatory, if one had such a thing. I’m really picturing it with lots of lush plants. Ooh, or a nursery!

Now to go play with color….

Flying Kites

I also drew this, because one of my favorite memories of that trip is Kavi flying kites on Galle Face Green. That’s the Galle Face Hotel (my favorite hotel in the world) running low there, with a few of Colombo’s newer skyrises behind.

I tried to incorporate it into the damask pattern (see previous post), but it just wouldn’t go. Ah well. Fun to draw, anyway.

Two Hours of Drawing

Two hours of drawing, pleasantly accompanied by the Seamwork podcast. I’m working on this for Spoonflower’s damask challenge tomorrow (due at 2 CST), which means that at some point tomorrow morning, I have to take this triangle and figure out how to seamlessly repeat it in Procreate to create a damask pattern, WITHOUT tiny white lines showing up at the borders. There may be much silent swearing, we’ll see.

But for now, I’m pretty pleased with where I’ve gotten, and am going to knock off for the night. I’ll probably tweak the spacing a bit more in the morning before doing anything else — I think I might delete one of the bottom banana bunches. And maybe try adding some decoration to the elephant’s back. Hm.

Goals for this one were to use a traditional Sri Lankan demon mask as the base — the peahen one, in this case, Mayura Raksha. Hanging one of these masks in your home is said to bring peace, harmony and prosperity, so I thought it would make a splendid wallpaper pattern.

The original colors on the masks are generally very bright, and don’t always fit so well into modern decor. So I’m planning to do this in one or two tones (might add a background color), keep the overall effect reasonably neutral. But yes, it’s very pink right now — that’s ’cause I’m simultaneously designing for a different challenge, which had a limited color palette, and this specific pink is one of the colors.

Fun for spring coming, though I’ll be trying other colors too, I imagine. (I have to figure out how to make Procreate change all instances of one color to another — I really hope there’s a simple technical way to do that. REALLY.)

I included the elephant because elephants. When you go to the elephant orphanage, you can feed the elephants bananas and other fruits, which they just slurp up whole with their trunks. Very fun. And the monkey because monkeys, and because Kavi and I had a really nice time walking through a nature preserve and encountering a large group of monkeys.

Oh, I miss traveling. In a non-pandemic, we might’ve been planning a Sri Lanka trip this summer, running a writing & food retreat. Well, maybe 2022. A girl can dream, and in the meantime, there are pink elephants.

(If this works out well, I also want to try it on fabric. I think it could be pretty cool on a sling chair for summer outdoors…)

A Kickstarter for Vegan Serendib?

Folks, I am contemplating whether it makes sense to run a little Kickstarter for the Vegan Serendib cookbook. Originally, I hoped the profits from Feast would just cover the production costs, but the pandemic kind of shattered that hope — not anytime soon, anyway.

We’re not doing a print run, just POD, so I don’t need to raise a large amount of money in advance, thankfully. But there ARE some costs — aside from my time (ha ha), there’s Stephanie Bailey’s time editing and producing the book, the cover artist’s cost, etc. I feel like I JUST ran a Kickstarter for the podcast, and maybe my readers have Kickstarter fatigue from me? But maybe this is a completely different set of readers, and I shouldn’t worry about it?

I think we’d keep it very simple — essentially, Kickstarting it would be letting you pre-order it at a small discount — probably free shipping (plus possibly getting it a few months early).

Production costs are something like $3000 or so, so at $40 for a hardcover, 75 people pre-ordering through Kickstarter would cover it. Thoughts?

Image may contain: food, text that says 'Mary Anne Mohanra VEGAN SERENDIB RECIPES FROM SRI LANKA'

My Poor Students

I might have broken suddenly into song in the middle of a teaching video this morning. But it’s totally fair to be reading them some of “Goblin Market” and then sing them a bit of “Who Will Buy” from Oliver, right? As we talk about the tradition of seduction poetry…

My poor students. It’s only second week, they barely know me, and now I’m singing to them…