Anapama Vittal lives almost two separate lives as an artist and business woman; yet, like many of us, her many roles allow her to express her full self. As a business woman, she has had success with her company, Bean Bag Factory Inc., and, most recently, as a consultant. As an artist, she has been a huge influence in the Mississauga art community.
5 Interesting Facts about Anupama
1. Anupama came to Canada from Southern India with two suitcases, no friends and family and fear that she would not find a job.
In 2006, she left her home for the promise of a better one. Though armed with an MBA in Sales and Marketing, Anupama worried that she would not get a job, especially considering that she had very little money to live on.
In hindsight, her predicament spurred her to create her own business and lack of family and friends forced her to make connections in her community, which eventually led to her becoming a celebrated artist.
2. She started her first business, Bean Bag Factory Inc., with only $67.
Of course, the $67 was only just the first investment in her company, but it was a step to economic freedom. Bean Bag Factory Inc. was founded in 2006, while Anupama had a full-time job; however, when she saw that her business was growing, she quit her to fully concentrate on her new company.
3. Anupama believes that we are all born artists.
As a little girl, Anupama loved to paint and even won an award when she was eight years old. Only after moving to Canada in 2006, did she rediscover art and join an arts group, the Kalaniketan. Over time, her group grew and embraced arts from different parts of Canada, thus being a platform for local artists.
Anupama’s long history of volunteering in her community has resulted in her being named the Festival Director of South Asian Mosaic Festival and the President of the Mississauga Art Society. As if that wasn’t enough, she is also the founder of Artescape Anua, a non-profit art gallery and event company.
4. Anupama believes that the government needs to support entrepreneurs better.
From her own experience as a board member of Access Employment, a Canadian non-profit, and listening to stories of struggle from ethnic women, Anupama asserts that the government needs to be more familiar and accepting of the ideas, products and services that come from different cultures. As a consequence, communicating a business model is even more challenging for immigrant entrepreneurs.
5. Her dream invention: A pill that could eliminate sleep.
My Key Takeaways from Anupama’s Story
- Being apart of a community opens doors that you may not realize exist.
- We all have multiple identities and passions, which can and should be expressed in many ways.
- We need to change our views on what it means to be an artist and recognize that not all artists are “struggling artists”.
- You don’t have to do only one thing in your life. In fact, it is not uncommon for individuals to switch career paths or take on new projects in their lifetimes. As we evolve, so do our needs, wants and perspectives.