A second generation Etikopakka artisan, Nageswara Rao zealously chose to take forward the family profession. He says that even though many a turned wood lacquer craft have lost their way with modernisation, Etikopakka has managed to stay true to its original methodology and processes. They use the native soft Ankudu wood and apply pigments derived from natural sources infused with lac resin from insects, to give the toys the signature glossy sheen. Even though contemporary designs and products have been added to the offerings over the years, artisans such as Nageswara with their fine crafting skills have ensured the traditional ones don’t fade away.
Nageswara holds strong community values, something which is evident in his work, vision and stated aspirations. He always talks about improving the market access for the community as a whole and seeks out opportunities where orders can be secured for him as well as his fellow craftsmen. Not one to shy away from challenges and hard work, he is always keen on experimenting with new designs while maintaining excellent quality control. Ask him about the effort behind the toys, tableware and other articles, and he exclaims that the artistic application of the lac alone can sometimes take weeks, it is done in stages and requires close monitoring throughout. The fruition of his efforts in the shape of a fine piece of Etikoppaka craft brings him utmost satisfaction.