Getting Creative : Rangoli
Rangoli is one of the traditional art forms of Indians. Decorative designs depicting pics or geometric patterns depicting the religious festival for which it is done. These designs are done in front of the deity or in front of the doors and main entrances as form of welcome. Each design or pattern depicts a certain deity and other associated things with the festival. Most of these designs have been passed on from generations with alterations over a period of time. The patterns that I have done have been taught to me by my mother who was taught by her mother and grandmother and so on forth. Every Indian household has their own version of Rangoli.
Rangolis are done with different mediums – Alpana the traditional Bengali rangoli is done with rice and water paste and done with the ring finger (by pressing a cotton ball in the palm by the thumb). There are various differences in patterns among the bengalis itself. Just by looking at the pattern you can say from which part of bengal the alpana is originally from. In my case I usually do alpana during the Kojagiri Lakshmi festival.
Rangoli is also done with colored sand. I usually do this kind during Diwali and Dhanteras. In South of India the Rangoli is done with flowers or rice or other mediums. Geometric patterns are used for the vedic poojas no idols are used. Even the base of every havan there is a certain geometric pattern that is used. A different one for a different pooja. Usually it is the swastik or lotus as the base. More info in Wiki here.