The artists prepare the brushes themselves and prepare
them with such dexterity that if the hands are balanced even a bit,
the line would not break or shake. Any line drawn would be smooth
and forceful and the onlooker would be compelled to praise it.
In Sanskrit the word Tulika is used for brushes.
The artists in their ordinary language call it Kalam. It is worthwhile
noting here that the different styles of paintings are also called
as Kalam, viz. - Bundi Kalam, Kangra Kalam, Shah Kalam, etc. Kalams
of different thicknesses are chiefly prepared for different types
of works and from different types of bristles. The thick or medium
size Kalam is required to fill colors in the painting.
Varaha Avataar of Lord Vishnu - Miniature painting
The brush is prepared from the hair present in the
ears or tail or soft hair on any part of young goat or from the
hairs of the ears of cow or calf or from the hairs of the tail of
a mongoose. For doing quality work, brush is made from hairs of
squirrel's tail. For this purpose, a squirrel is put into a cage.
Then a big cloth is wrapped round the door of the cage. The cloth
is left loose two feet from the cage. Now the gate is opened and
the squirrel is made to leave the cage and enter the cloth. When
this is accomplished the gate is closed and the cloth wrapped in
such a manner that it can run but cannot escape. Now its neck is
caught carefully with the first two fingers and the body trunk with
thumb and the third finger. By catching the squirrel in this manner
its mouth, tail, and legs do not get pressed and it can breathe
freely. Now the tail hairs are wetted, and one hair plait after
another is made and clipped off. After cutting off requisite quantity
of the hair, the squirrel is set free. The points' end of the cut
plaits are either tied up then and there or kept wrapped up in a
piece of paper. It is important that extreme care is taken so that
the squirrel is never killed or harmed in any way.
Two Groups of Ascetics Battling - Miniature painting
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