Features Monday, June 22, 2015 - 05:30
  It all started when earlier this month, Aham Bhumika, a Bhopal-based NGO, uploaded several pictures of shoes that had been painted by the children the organisation works with.  The brightly coloured shoes, which has been adorned with motifs inspired from the Gond form of art, were an instant hit on social media with many expressing their interest in buying the pairs.      After posting the photographs on their social media accounts, the NGO was welcomed with a rush of enquiries and requests, along with 40 emails, from people interested to buy.  Speaking to The News Minute, Subrat Goswami, President of the NGO said they were pleasantly surprised by the response they received for the shoes.  These shoes however weren't for sale, but was an attempt by the NGO to try a different form of art. Keeping in mind the interest the pictures have garnered, the NGO is now training some of the older children and youths to practice painting shoes specifically.        "A supporter of the NGO had gifted 10 pairs of shoes to our children in the Dorda village. We asked them to treat the shoes as their canvas and paint whatever they wished to. We mostly focus on the Gond style of tribal painting. These paintings stand apart for the bright and rich colours used," Goswami said.  The Gonds are a tribal community in central India and are said to be one of the largest indigenous communities in the country.  "Once those who will get trained get a hold of the form, we can produce more shoes and sell them. Our aim is to help provide the artists with a means of livelihood," Goswami said.    Gond Art work by rural children of Aham Bhumika   Aham Bhumika works with the underprivileged sections in rural pockets of India. Among their various projects, they also help rural people in getting basic art education. Apart from paintings, the NGO also trains people in paper quilling, embroidery work, quilt making. The funds raised from selling their art work is used to help the artists become financially independent and to also train younger generations. All images source: Aham Bhumika/Facebook Also read: Why the 'I didn’t do Yoga today' rants are needlessly over the top