How to Draw Border in Madhubani Painting?

Border makes any painting look complete. They add depth within the composition, working as a frame for a painting. Often borders point inwards to the painting, establishing the viewer’s eye on the subject.

In Madhubani Painting, borders play important role. They expand upon the essence of the painting they are surrounded. It can be said, they are additional space to depict symbols related to the main Madhubani painting. You can consider border as footnotes that contain additional information supporting the main text.

Key features of Madhubani painting borders:

  • Borders are done with double lines.
  • Border surround the painting with unbroken continuity.
  • Borders can have linear patterns, asymmetric swirling motifs, scrolling lines and geometrical motifs.
  • Figurative natural motifs used in borders are fish, lotus, sun, abstract peacock, and parrot to name few. While geometrical motifs used are triangle, circle, semi-circle and square.
  • Borders can be simply drawn in black or only single color can be added. Colors in border are added keeping in mind the colors used in painting. Colors in border can be complimentary or contrasting in nature.

If you are interested in learning Madhubani painting, do read Madhubani painting in 6 easy steps. This folk art is based on figurative motifs and bright colors which catch kids attention. Practicing this detailed art increases kids’ focus and concentration. You can teach this interesting art to kids by following this post on easy Madhubani Painting for kids.

Here I’m sharing three easy steps to draw Madhubani borders each one with a different look.

Border 1:

This is an easy half inch width Geometrical pattern border. Double lines run on inward and outward line.

geometrical-pattern-madhubani-border1

Step 1: As you can see in the first image, I have drawn free-hand continuous semi-circles of same sizes. Added double line to the semicircle.

Step 2: Drawn same pattern on inside boundary. Added circles with double line.

Step 3:  Lastly filled the space between circle with lines. These lines add spatial depth to this simple border.

easy-madhubani-border

After adding colors, border looks like this. Here I have added random colors, one should add colors according to colors used in main composition.

Border 2:

Have used popular fish motif in this border. In Madhubani painting the fish is an auspicious sign for growth and prosperity.

fish-motif-madhubani-border

Step 1: Space out fish through-out the border at approximately equal distance.

Step 2: To add detailing in fish, I have made check pattern. Check pattern consists of crossed horizontal and vertical lines forming several squares.

Step 3: Filled the alternate squares with black ink to make check pattern more intricate. In the space between fish, I have added swirls and small circles.

easy-fish-border

So here is how the border looks like after dash of color. Addition of colors makes border come alive.

Border 3:

This is one inch border with lotus motif. Lotus motif signify feminine sexuality while bamboo trees stands for masculine sex.

lotus-motif-madhubani-border

Step 1: Have drawn lotus at equal distance. Lotus are lined up with upright and downward sequence. Draw the double line in lotus.

Step 2: Make detailing inside lotus and filled the negative space between lotuses with an ornate motif.

Step 3: Have added turquoise blue color which in madhubani painting symbolizes sky and the water. Pink is used in lotus being its obvious color and also works as contrasting color to turquoise blue.

easy-lotus-border

Things to remember:

  • Borders support the painting but one should keep in mind to not make borders too profound that they overwhelm the central theme.
  • Border is supporting artist so should not steal the beauty of central characters.

You must have got an idea that border adds amazing effect on a painting. Try and practice different forms and motifs in border. Try the effects that border can add to your own creations.

I have shared here what I’m learning each day by practicing and observing Madhubani painting. Hope this post helps you in your quest of learning this beautiful art form.

Keep practicing, keep learning!

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Madhubani Painting – Sun God Worshiping

In Hindu tradition, the Sun is the symbol of prosperity, progress, courage and overall well-being. Sun God is believed to cure serious health problems and grant long healthy life. It’s a common daily ritual to offer ‘Arghya‘ to the rising sun to seek his blessings.

So, here in this Madhubani painting I have shown the Sun and his younger wife (Chhathi Maiyaa) on the right hand side. While on the left hand side, a woman devotee is standing in water and offering Arghya.

Madhubani painiting depicting Sun worship

Just like Madhubani Painting is the most popular folk art of Bihar, Chhath Puja is the most popular festival of Bihar. It’s also celebrated in Uttar Pradesh and Mithila region of Nepal. However, these days it’s celebrated by devotees in many parts of India.

Significance of Chhath Puja

Chhath Puja is dedicated to worship of the Sun god and his wife Chhati Maiya. It’s a common belief that Sun god’s wife Chhati Maiya fulfills the wish of having child. So, devotees perform Chhath puja to thank the Sun god and his wife for fulfilling their wishes.

My memories of Chhath Puja

Having spent most of my childhood in Bihar, I have closely seen my grandmother performing this ritual. Preparations for this festival start weeks before and lot of emphasis is given on cleanliness and purity during the preparation.

There are lots of rituals – I can recall my grandmother fasting and drinking water only after offering prayers to the rising and setting Sun. During these two days, she would even restrain herself from speaking and used to guide us only through gestures. She used to stand in water, meditate and wait for sun to rise.

All family members would gather at the river bank before sunset and sunrise (the next day) to offer ‘Arghya‘ to the Sun.

This Madhubani Painting is dedicated to Sun god and Chhathi Maiyaa

As you can see I have tried to merge both Sun and his wife. I have kept minimal use of madhubani motifs to add emphasis to focal points.

Madhubani painiting Sun motif

Focal point means where you want your viewer to focus in the painting. My two focal points in this painting are the Sun and the woman devotee. Therefore, I have not created any distraction by adding motifs between these two focal points. You can see popular Madhubani motifs in this painting by me.

Repeated arches were added to create a detailed yet not distracting background. This detailed background gives depth to this other-wise simple madhubani painting. You can learn more about madhubani background here.

Madhubani Border

Border adds frame to a painting and is important part of a painting. Here I have created repeated circles in border. Using circle in border indirectly emphasize on the circular Sun. Have a look at intricate border process in this Ganesha Madhubani painting.

Madhubani painiting depicting Sun god with border

You can easily learn Madhubani painting by reading detailed step by step instructions in this post on Madhubani painting in six easy steps.  You can read more about Madhubani painting in detail in what is Madhubani painting.

Madhubani painting can be either riot of bright colors or even a black and white Madhubani painting can be stunning.

As I have mentioned in earlier posts, objective of sharing my Madhubani paintings is to help others who are keen on learning Madhubani painting. I’m myself learning each day and have fair share of flaws. However, if I can help or inspire others in their creative journey I will be most happy.

If you like intricate art forms, do have a look at how to draw mandala? If you are familiar with joys of coloring then this free printable coloring page might interest you as well. I keep on updating art related post on Bhaili.  You can subscribe to this blog for regular updates.

So, don’t forget to pour in your suggestions and feedback in comments. Your response will encourage me in this endeavor.

Do visit and like Bhaili’s Facebook page to get regular updates. You can also find me on Pinterest. You may also subscribe to this blog by entering your email-id in EMAIL SUBSCRIPTION section (top of the right-hand column for desktop-readers and bottom of screen for mobile-readers).

What is Madhubani Painting?

Madhubani is an internationally acclaimed folk art from state of Bihar in India. It’s an art form that was traditionally passed on from one generation to another like family secrets. Its intricate beauty attracts art lovers towards it.

The minute detailing and thrill of filling bright colors in small spaces makes me paint something new in Madhubani. Just the other day I was painting Madhubani and one of my Bhaili (friend) dropped by.

She liked this style of painting and showed eagerness to know more about Madhubani painting and from where I have learned it.

My dear friend didn’t knew that my home town is Bhagalpur in Bihar and that meant seeing live Madhubani painting all around me from childhood. She got curious and wanted to know more about it. My friends herself draws beautiful mandalas. If you are interested in learning how to draw mandalas do read mandala drawing in six easy steps.

So, I thought why not share with you our conversation on Madhubani. This must help you getting basic idea about this form of art. Following are the excerpts of our conversation.

My friend: How this art got its name and its history?

Me: Madhubani is a district in North Bihar, and this art form is widely practiced in this region hence the name. It’s also believed that King Janak of Mithila commissioned artisans to paint on daughter Sita’s marriage with Ram. Mithila is birthplace of Sita, therefore this style is also called Mithila Paintings.

My friend: What are peculiar characteristics of Madhubani painting?

Me: Bold colors and larger than life abstract figures of deities form the central theme of Madhubani paintings. Normally Gods and Goddesses – like Ram and Sita, Krishna and Radha, Shiv and Parvati, Ganesh, Goddess Durga.

Faces of the figures have protruding eyes and pointed nose. Nature inspired motifs like lotus, sun and animal motifs like Peacock, fish, turtle and elephant are popular. Originally, it was done on walls with available natural colors. These days it’s done on hand-made sheets with water-based colors or on silk fabric with acrylic colors.

Have a look at couple of my Madhubani works on hand-made paper:

Radha-Krishna Madhubani Painting
Radha-Krishna
Radha-Krishna Madhubani Painting
Radha-Krishna

If you are fond of mono color paintings. Have a look at one of mine black and white madhubani painting.

My friend: Can I learn it?

Me: Yes one can learn it but since it’s an intricate art form and done free hand, concentration and patience is needed to practice it. I have shown steps for drawing this art form in easy Madhubani Painting for kids. If you have basic idea of Madhubani and want to create a Madhubani painting with more detailing, you can read my post about Madhubani painting in 6 easy steps.

My friend: That’s fascinating! Tell me more.

Me: On observation you will notice double lines all over, differentiating foreground from background and creating depth in design. Double line border is made to highlight the main painting, it can be geometrical design or flora or fauna inspired motifs. In absence of double line the painting can be called Madhubani inspired art not original Madhubani art.

My friend: What are different styles in Madhubani Painting?

Me: Different styles of Madhubani painting can be broadly categorized as Bharni, Kachni, Geru, Tantric, Gobar, and Godana.

My Friend: Great when can I learn from you?

Me: When I take next workshop on Madhubani. 🙂

Feel free to ask me any questions related to this popular art.

Do visit and like Bhaili’s Facebook page to get regular updates. You can also find me on Pinterest. You may also subscribe to this blog by entering your email-id in EMAIL SUBSCRIPTION section (top of the right-hand column for desktop-readers and bottom of screen for mobile-readers).