Designer Spotlight: Geetanjali Behera
1. Tell us a little about yourself and how you came to be a surface designer. Hello!! Thanks for this opportunity! I am Geetanjali, an artist based in Goa, India. I began my career as a freelance fashion illustrator creating technical drawings and illustrations for apparel, handbags and accessories. While working with clients around the world, I also got the opportunity to try new projects including illustrations for adult coloring books, surface pattern designs, graphic prints and more. In the year 2020, my first ever coloring book, Mindful and Meditative Coloring book was published by Pagestreet Co., distributed by Macmillan which is available around the world on Amazon, Barnes and noble, book depository and other outlets. My journey as a surface pattern designer started in 2016 when I joined Spoonflower, I had done a few pattern design projects for my clients, but Spoonflower was the biggest turning point in my journey. Weekly challenges were a great source of motivation and the facebook fan group is an amazing community, I felt so inspired and couldn’t stop myself from creating more designs and within a few years I got featured as a spotlight artists on the Spoonflower blog, featured in patchwork & quilting magazines, got some great licensing deals, and last but not the least, my commissions have been going up every year.
2 . What influences your art the most? I get most inspired by my husband, Prakash Baing who is also an artist, we travel together, visit beautiful places, share ideas and he always encourages me to learn new art forms. Thangka painting being the most significant one which definitely changed my perspective towards art. As I kept painting for hours I realized the importance of each stroke because that's what guarantees a beautiful painting. And that’s how I developed a passion for intricate, detailed and beautiful compositions. 3 . What mediums do you use to create your art? Normally I use illustrator and photoshop but I love to explore new mediums including digital like procreate and traditional mediums like watercolor and gouache. For Thangka paintings, I use natural mineral pigments, ink, gold and silver.
4 . You've had some success with licensing your artwork. Can you tell us about your licensing experiences? My experience with licensing my artwork has been great so far. Most of my licensing offers have come through Spoonflower. When I got my first offer, it was really exciting and new, so I asked few fellow artists to guide me and they were really supportive. Some of my licensing projects have come through Instagram and my website.
5 . Are there a lot of opportunities for licensing in India? I have licensed for one of the leading companies, Welspun Global Brands Ltd., one of the leading textile companies in India, and I am sure there are a lot of other companies who license prints from individual artists. Most of them prefer to buy the print rights and thus non exclusive license is not very common. But, I still need to research more on this as I don’t have much experience working for the Indian market. 6 . Being that you are located in India, is it easy to find licensing work in other countries? I have never found that as a challenge, in fact, most of the companies that have licensed my work are based in other countries.
7 . Do you think your art lends itself to any particular sector of the fabric or apparel industry? I have a wide range of artworks that I have created in the past few years which couldfit into apparel, accessories, wallpaper, stationary and home decor products.
8 . Would you like to share any advice you have for designers who are considering licensing their artwork? I am still learning in the learning phase, but I think if it’s related to developing your own style or creative block I would suggest to learn a traditional art forms as it will help you build a strong foundation. And, if it’s about licensing, then there are a few courses available that you can choose to invest in, join different communities to learn from fellow designers and keep your work posted on social media. 9 . What's next for you in your artistic endeavors? Are there any other companies or designers you would like to collaborate with? I am planning to post some Skillshare classes where I can share my workflow and some tips. I’ll be creating more prints and licensing my prints to more companies. I would love to collaborate with some leading wallpaper companies but I am also looking forward to the surprises life has to offer!
See Geetanjali’s feature in the Spoonflower blog!