Pune: Swapnil Mehendale, a resident of Karve nagar in Pune, has overcome challenges with hearing and speech to pursue his passion for painting and turn it into a successful business venture. Mehendale, who is deaf and mute is fond of painting since childhood and sharpened his skills at Apte painting class near Nimbalkar Talim in Sadashiv Peth, where he learned various techniques like pencil sketching and watercolor painting over a span of five years.
His journey took an exciting turn when he found inspiration to combine his love for painting with gardening on the Garden Group on Facebook. Mehendale bought a few pots, painted them, and posted pictures on Facebook. He received an overwhelming response and orders for his painted pots. Encouraged by the positive feedback, Mehendale expanded his business by creating painted ‘panatya’ for Diwali, handcrafted lanterns, and Warli paintings on walls.
Mehendale’s first attempt at Warli painting on a wall was a success, and he shared pictures of his creation on Facebook, which received praise and more orders. He also started painting glass bottles and other customized items, catering to the growing demand for his unique artwork. Despite facing challenges due to his hearing impairment, Mehendale’s determination and artistic talent have enabled him to build a successful business over the past three years.
“I am thrilled to see the response and support I have received for my artwork. Painting has always been my passion, and I am grateful for the opportunity to turn it into a business,” says Mehendale, who is grateful to the Garden Group and the support of fellow members, especially the encouragement from a kind-hearted “madam” who gave him his first order for a Warli painting on the wall.