In the past three years, Mumbai-based art start-up Artiz.in has worked with top-rated malls, exhibitions, institutes, and corporates to conduct creative workshops. They’ve conducted live workshops for big names like R-city Mall, Shapoorji Pallonji Group, and Kidz World Expo. They also worked with for major Multi-national companies like Oracle.
And I got to hear the tale straight from the horse’s mouth. Vaibhavi Gala, Founder, Artiz.in shared her journey—the ebbs and the flows, some advice for artists, entrepreneurs and artrpreneurs, in this exclusive tell-all.
A Blank Canvas
“From the early years of my life, I’ve been creatively inclined,” says Vaibhavi Gala, whose first encounter with the creative world was through her mother who, at the time, was running a fashion boutique. At the tender age of 17, Vaibhavi took over the reins of her mother’s boutique and juggled it with her graduation. “That’s when I discovered myself and my ability to create,” she says.
Fast forward a few years, Vaibhavi returned to India from the United States with her husband and two-year-old daughter. That’s when her journey with the art of making and creating a living out of art started.
“In 2006, I started my first business ‘Scrap Korner’ that followed my journey to learn the art of scrapbooking. It took me a while to educate the market and introduce paper-crafting in India. I started with making custom pieces, showcased at exhibitions and hosted workshops to spread the love for paper-crafting. After a couple of years, I launched my website and since then I’ve never looked back,” ecstatically said the shepreneur.
“In 2017, I switched my focus from creating art on commission to building a stronger community of artisans that I grew to love throughout these years. The idea of using your hands, learning something new and breaking away from the everyday routine inspired me to create Artiz.in,” she said, sharing her experience of starting her newest venture. For the past 3 years, Artiz.in has been at the forefront of inspiring creativity in paper-crafting, card-making, scrapbooking and more.
Talking about her goal with the organization, Vaibhavi says that she wants Artiz.in to become a virtual space for individuals to connect, create and celebrate. To serve as a platform for artists to engage with people in a fun and comfortable setting, showcase their art and grow their business globally.
During the 21 days’ lockdown, Artiz.in hosted daily live Instagram sessionsto inspire people to make something new every day.
For this artrepreneur who has completely bootstrapped her business, finances remain a big problem. She has also had to move cities almost every other year which has been a major hindrance to her business. Giving deeper insight into the situation, she said, “Neither could I develop a team nor could I take up commercial space to grow my business. I had to restrict myself from doing business online.”
Like many other female entrepreneurs, Vaibhavi has also had to go through her fair share of tribulations. She narrated, “Also, there are many sacrifices that a woman like me makes out of choice for her family, which comes at the cost of her professional growth. And sadly, women are often considered to be ‘hobbyists’ in the art world and their work is not taken as seriously as it should be.”
Vaibhavi’s Advice for Young Artists
Don’t wait for perfection or a fully formed idea. Just get out there, in whatever way makes the most sense to you and try. That’s how you learn. You don't have to be the creative type to do something creative. There is a stigma around the word creativity and most people relate it to being artistic. Creativity simply means to think outside the box and to express your ideas in unique ways. And I’m living proof that you can make a living out of creativity!
The Artisan Behind Artiz.in
When asked about her passion for art, the seasoned entrepreneur explained, “Art and creativity have the power to heal and enliven. It brings joy, gives comfort and boosts confidence. As Mary Lou Cook said, "Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun." Art is like meditation or yoga – one’s way to happiness! For me, creativity is a way of life, a form of expression and a way to connect with my mind, body and soul.”
Vaibhavi is someone who has braved through it all. She’s faced all the curveballs in her career, she’s held her head high even when the world shunned her. The art veteran is someone who wants to let other artists flourish, and not have to give up their passion because the economics don’t support it. She’s one of the few who have both artistic chops and sharp business acumen. She explains, “I used to be afraid to admit to myself that I wanted to fully commit to the creative world. The only time I started to feel comfortable with myself was when I realized I can be a part of both worlds, business and art, by just being myself.”
“Change is a constant phenomenon and you have to continuously innovate to have a competitive edge and ultimately succeed. Knowledge is power but knowing what you love to do and doing what you love is the silver lining,” says Gala, when asked what’s her biggest business learning.
Advice for entrepreneurs
Don't be afraid to fail. You should change the way you look at failure. Shift your mindset from the traditional sense of the word failure; ‘to prove unsuccessful’ to a more positive definition, ‘the opportunity to begin again more intelligently’. Failing is all about perspective. The only real failure is when you give up.
They’re taking this to the next level now. Artiz.in will be launching its e-commerce site this year where artists from across the globe will be able to find buyers for their work. Along with that, there are plans to teach art through online classes and provide monthly DIY kits for kids and adults. They also have numerous live events in the pipeline.
To follow their journey, CLICK HERE.
About the 21 series:
On the 24th of March 2020, the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi announced a nation-wide lock-down for 21 days to fight the pandemic that is the Coronavirus. Citizens mustn’t leave their homes unless absolutely essential. This series aims to bring to the readers 21 positive stories through this lock-down. Something to inspire them to keep at it and come back out of this horrific tragedy stronger.
If you have an inspiring story or know someone whose story the world must know, get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org