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Films that tell stories of our crafts and looms

Lovely ladies and founders of Story Loom Films Keya Vaswani and Nidhi Kamath suggested this music to be played along with the post.

PITR : Tell us a bit  about you , what you did in previous life before starting Storyloom Films

We both studied from Indian Institute of crafts and Design (iicd) in Jaipur and were batch mates and best friends. We did our 4 year diploma course in Craft Product designing which really helped us to get a thorough knowledge of crafts and we some how we knew that we both wanted to go beyond products.  Because we share the same interest of traveling and storytelling, we were fortunate to get an opportunity to make a film of Banarasi Saaris and issues for  a known textile historian Padmashree Rahul Jain. We made our very first film Threads of Banaras in our Diploma Project and that is when we realized that this is what we want to take forward in our careers.

Meet Keya

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and Nidhi

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 PITR : What inspired you to start  making documentaries on Indian crafts  ?
As an Indian culture, we carry a very strong traditional background. One of them is our hand crafted work. Hand crafted products is the second largest occupation in India and is in yet we all are unaware of it. We wanted to share our cultural background and beautiful people, their stories behind these beautiful crafts. Also we have certain pre conceived notions about these craftsmen and their lives, we need to break that as well. We need to look at them with respect and not down upon just because of their work and life style is different. We all are the same, we need to learn to respect each other. This what we want to share with others.

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PITR : Your favorite forms of Indian craft , textiles etc  ?
The very famous Patola of Patan. The immense amount of hard work, dedication and skill required is just mind blowing.

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PITR : Your favorite place in India  ?

Keya: Leh Ladhakh was a life changing experience. That place made me believe that God  exists and if he could bring me here, I know my life is going to be super awesome!

Nidhi : Jaipur is one of my favorite city as it is a combination of both cultural and modern city.

 

PITR : Any memorable moment in your journey so far ? With  artisans  , friends or family :) ??

Yes, its how we came to know about that we have won the National Award.

We never thought we will make it. We were in Banaras at that time. Nidhi checked the list of the National award winners and didn’t see our name there. So we thought “better luck next time”. We were really tired after the shoot and was in deep sleep. But then she got a call from a friend congratulating on winning that national award! She suddenly got up and started waking me up saying ‘Keya hum jeet gaye’! Humien award mil gaya!!” I was so sleepy that I didn’t realize and said ‘’haan haan very good, chal ab so ja’’ ha ha ha! Later we realized that ‘Oh we won the National Award!” and I (Keya) ended up crying out of happiness because finally our efforts have paid off.

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PITR :Any word of advice for budding women entrepreneurs , journalists , photographers, filmmakers .

Keya: Being a woman there are lot of things I really enjoy from my heart. One of them is I truly enjoy being a homemaker (other than my professional life). I love taking care of my home and my husband. I enjoy being a host and making dinner for my friends and family (even animals!). Now If I look at my profession, by making these films and sharing beautiful stories I am kind of taking care of the culture and tradition I belong to. So, understand yourself as a women. Be close to yourself. See and do what truly makes you happy, what makes you who you are. Trust me, life be beautiful. “Life is about possibilities, positivity and acceptance which should resonate from with in”.

Nidhi : As a woman India is safe unlike what we see in the television or media. People are helpful especially in rural India. Never let you being a woman stop you from exploring what you want. I really like and relate to what Steve Jobs said “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.”

In future Keya and Nidhi are planning to collaborate with new people and explore new areas of interest. Check out the Story Looms website here , follow them on Facebook here and Instagram here.

Here is the movie that won the National Award. Sit back and enjoy . Its beautiful.

All images and video credits : Storyloom Films

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