Deepavali, also known as Diwali and ‘The Festival of Lights’, falls on the 2nd of November this year.
According to Wikipedia, it is an official holiday in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Mauritius, Guyana, Trinidad & Tobago, Suriname, Malaysia, Singapore and Fiji.
And from Mr. Subhamoy Das in About.com:
Deepavali or Diwali is certainly the biggest and the brightest of all Hindu festivals. It’s the festival of lights (deep = light and avali = a row i.e., a row of lights) that’s marked by four days of celebration, which literally illumines the country with its brilliance, and dazzles all with its joy. Each of the four days in the festival of Diwali is separated by a different tradition, but what remains true and constant is the celebration of life, its enjoyment and goodness.
When I decided to do the card above, a little look-see online shows that popular elements for Deepavali cards include pretty variations of the ubiquitous little clay lamp, and the gorgeous kōlam or raṅgolī. (Here’s the link to an informative Sahapedia article by Prof. Vijaya Nagarajan on these art forms.) I decided to have a simple lamp for my card, as the background I wanted is already way too busy and festive to compete with a joyous kōlam.