The joy of crafting

Miniature wonders

The joy of crafting

Latha Srinivas Tantry taught in a regular college until she decided to give up teaching altogether and took to her passion — making miniature models of airplanes, architectural wonders of the world, vintage cars and ships.

   It was a decade ago that Latha first forayed into assembling models for KS Raman Art Foundation, Sadashivnagar but soon her interest grew and she began dabbling in the art of assembling these models. “Eminent scientist and expert modeller late KS Raman and my father N Sripathi, a vintage car specialist, have been my inspiration. I began on a positive note and have not looked back since,” she says.

Latha has spent a lot of time to put together about 175 static miniature models of airplanes, vintage cars and ships. She has also worked in paper modelling and 3D models, using foam and sponge to create replicas of the Taj Mahal, The Leaning Tower of Pisa, Big Ben in London and the Bruges Market in Belgium to mention a few.

    These intricately made models will soon be on display at a mini museum on the first floor of her home in Shivakote near Hesaraghatta. She concedes that making these is all about patience, concentration and an eye for details.

   “Nothing must go wrong because the details are so definite and precise,” she explains. “Each part has to be clipped from the spruce (the plastic frame to which parts are fixed), formed and then assembled as per the instruction manual,” she adds.

Latha also says it’s not easy to find these kits in India. “I usually buy them from RCS Toys in Delhi. And a few relatives and friends travelling abroad pick up kits for me and some fellow modellers have gifted some special kits too,” she beams.

She points out that it takes a good six hours to assemble a single kit and an additional three hours to handpaint them. “I don’t believe in using a brush; I prefer using my hands to colour them. This adds a personal touch,” she says. She also adds that the art of building models from scratch is also a great stress reliever.

    “The whole process transports me to a different world altogether and the end product is always worth the wait. It is also a great exercise in anger management,” she says.

Latha says all the work would not have been possible without the immense support and constant encouragement from her parents and her husband Srinivas Tantry, an auditor by profession.

Queries by a lot of people about where she would stock her craft triggered the idea of a museum in her and her husband.     “It is my husband’s dream to display all the models I have assembled. These models are the result of an immense amount of hard work, dedication and commitment. We were keen on displaying it neatly, without letting it gather dust,” Latha narrates.    

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