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Navadurga and Colors of Navaratri
Photos: Srivatsa Shandilya

October 17, 2020

Sharad Navaratri or Maha Navaratri is commonly celebrated during the Indian month of Ashvina that commences from the first day of the lunar fortnight. As per the English calendar, it usually falls in the months of September and October. The festival is celebrated for nine nights (this year from Oct 17-25) and devotees pray, take part in the Dandiya Raas and Garba and offer prasad to please Goddess Durga.

According to some Hindu texts such as the Shakta and Vaishnava Puranas, Navaratri theoretically falls twice or four times a year. Of these, the Sharad Navaratri near autumn equinox (September-October) is the most celebrated and the Vasanta Navaratri near spring equinox (March-April) is the next most significant to the culture of the Indian subcontinent. In all cases, Navaratri falls in the bright half of the Hindu luni-solar months. The celebrations vary by region, depending on the creativity and preferences.

Bangalore based dancer Sathyanarayana Raju displays his creativity for NAVADURGA, his take on the NINE COLOURS OF NAVARATRI with jewellery by Asha Nandkumar and makeup by Shekar Rajendran.

The festival begins with the bright and vibrant Orange. This colour signifies energy and happiness. Hindus worship Goddess Shailputri on this day.

White is the colour for Day 2, which is a symbol of peace and purity. Hindus worship Goddess Brahmacharini on this day.

People wear red colour on the third day of Navaratri. It signifies beauty and fearlessness. Hindus worship Goddess Chandraghanta on this day.

The colour of the fourth day of Navaratri is royal blue. This colour is considered good for health and wealth. Hindus worship Goddess Kushmanda on this day.

People wear the colour yellow on the fifth day of the festival. The colour stands for happiness and brightness. Hindus worship Goddess Skandamata on Day 5.

This colour of the sixth day signifies new beginnings and growth. Hindus worship Goddess Katyayani on Day 6.

The colour of the seventh day is grey, a colour which stands for the strength of transforming. Hindus worship Goddess Kalaratri on Day 6 and this day is called the Saptami.

Called Ashtami, many people perform Kanjaks on this day. The colour of the day, purple, signifies the power of intellect and peace. People worship Goddess Mahagauri on this day.

This day is called Navami and is the last day of the Navaratri festival. Rituals are performed on this day and Goddess Siddhidhatri is worshipped. The colour peacock green is believed to fulfill the desires of devotees.

The 9-day festival concludes on Vijayadasami or Dussehra, which is the tenth day of the festivities. Dussehra as we all know signifies the victory of good over evil. However, the stories vary from region to region. People from the South, East and North-East celebrate this day as the victory of Maa Durga - also known as Durga Puja.

Namaskaram Sathyanarayana Raju Sir
These photographs are full of life. I have been a great fan of your dance and witnessed your exquisite performances in Music Academy, Narada Gana Sabha. But these pictures speak a thousand words. Even in the stills, the power of the Devi is seen so beautifully. Depicting the female God with so much grace can only be possible by a dedicated artist.
Capturing the artist from the right direction at the right spot is only possible by the experienced lens as of Srivatsa Shandilya sir. Kudos to your photography! The unique jewellery collections of Asha and wonderful makeup by Shekar have taken the captures to the next level. Congratulations to the whole team. Thank you, Narthaki, for posting this unique article during Navaratri and giving us a feast!
- Asha (Oct 21, 2020)

There is a divine grace of Devi in these photographs, and the one person who can do absolute justice to such a concept is Sathyanarayana Raju Sir! Such wonderful makeup by Shekar Rajendran Sir and stunning photography by Srivatsa Shandilya Sir! Thank you, Narthaki, for featuring this initiative.
(Oct 21, 2020)

Nava Durga in her multicoloured splendor depicted so majestically yet with pleasing aesthetics by Sathya. That's no surprise! Again a festival demonstrating the unity of India in all its diversity. Is not each festival a telling symbol of synthesis and integration?
- Dr. S.T. Ramesh (Oct 20, 2020)

A strong interpretation of Navadurgas... choosing the right colour / bhangimas and maquillage... if not you, who else. Great work, Anna.
- Sridhar Bhaskar (Oct 19, 2020)
Amazing Navadurgas. Each interpretation is divine!
- Pruthvi (Oct 19, 2020)
Aesthetic, intense, evocative, beautiful, that is Sathya Sir. Thanks for bringing the Navadurgas into our minds with these striking poses and expressions. The royal colours and attire add to the festive flavour.
- Jayanthi (Oct 19, 2020)
Every photo is full of life…
(Oct 19, 2020)
Gorgeous pics, Satya Sir. So aesthetic and creative. It's so nice to see Devi being depicted by a male dancer. Brilliant photography and make up.
(Oct 19, 2020)

Amazing colors and beautiful poses. Such a creative and unique way to depict Devi… Simply striking!
(Oct 18, 2020)
A unique concept, loved each and every picture…amazing photography by Vatsa...beautiful costumes, colours, background…everything is perfect...Happy Navarthri…
(Oct 18, 2020)

Awesome pictures. Unable to get my eyes off from the beautifully captured marvellous expressions. My festival is enhanced by these enchanting photos.
(Oct 18, 2020)
Vibrant and amazing. The attire of each Devi with the colour theme is overwhelming. Sir, you are mesmerizing. The true spirit of Navaratri is on.
- Madhu Chandra (Oct 18, 2020)
Dear Sathyanarayana Raju garu, you have depicted Navadurga so well, I am awww stuck by your creativity and not missing the minute nuances; you portrayed it so well. God bless you!!
(Oct 18, 2020)

Navadurga is so beautifully depicted.
Costume and make-up are apt and you look resplendent, Sathya. Happy Navaratri.
(Oct 17, 2020)

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