Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Blue Blood

This book belongs to that period when India had almost achieved Independence but some of the royals were still in India. There are interesting stories about Indian maharajas married to royal princesses. Blue Blood denotes those royals who always stayed inside palaces and never toiled under the sun so their blood became Blue.

The cover photograph is by Pritom Ghosh, an amateur but quite an enthusiast, based in Kolkata.

This was one of my quick designs.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Khali Kitaab ka Jadoo

Calligraphy is the art of beautiful handwriting. I remember when we were kids, our calligraphy teacher used to come with his suitcase loaded with different varieties of pens. His favourite student used to make the suitcase a pillow and practice on it.

He once told us how he got frisked at the airport where security thought that the pen was actually a bomb! He landed up doing calligraphy at the airport and describing how he made those pens. I am sure the security personnel were impressed.

I had lost touch with calligraphy but with Hindi books i feel that there is a potential to take my writing further to the next level. Here, i enjoyed writing more than designing the cover.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

To Whom It May Concern

I am in love with Black and White photos. They make everything look appealing.

The photographer Angelo is born with heart valves that are not upto the standard but he lives without complaints and to the fullest.

Friday, September 3, 2010

What Really Happened

Waiting is a fascinating theme to work on..
there are so many ways to depict it..subjective
of course.

Rain makes me melancholic.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Vivek and I

Vivek and I was fun to work on. It's a quick read. My first book on gay rights.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Book Cover: Cinema Bhojpuri

It was a lot of fun doing the cover for "Cinema Bhojpuri". My cover brief of course was to make the cover lurid. This is one of the most gaudy designs i've ever done.

Even reading the titles of Bhojpuri cinema gave me laughter bursts. Some examples are Tu Hamaar Hau, Uthayele Ghunghta Chand Dekhle, Naag Naagin. Not to say, I appreciate the locals who watch Bhojpuri cinema.

The Pink has come out perfect after production.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Book Cover: Chef

I was always tempted to do a book cover with just one word as the title. It gives you the freedom to go abstract and explore...I read the entire book and fell in love with the writing. The story is set in the Siachen glacier and deals with core issues of Hindus and Muslims..I tried shooting cloves, dry figs but finally ended up with a simple illustration.

This is also one of my explorations...

This is the final cover that got printed. A chinar leaf, mountains and a lake by your side, and a chef....does one want more? I wonder...

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Book Cover: Traitor

"As i live my days locked up in a wretched prison in this frozen country, i start to write the story of my beloved child, Nirami. The story begins with the birth of God." Traitor gives voice to the testimonies of millions of refugees of a war-ravaged land. The option above went for print..however i prefer the one on the bottom right..i love the way type sits on the texture of the wall. A shirt, a shadow of a man, a wall, all in embodiment of a story behind a story..

Monday, March 22, 2010

Book Cover: Nautch Girls of the Raj and Love Stories from the Raj

'To see her is to fall in love,and to drink a cup of wine from the flask of
her lustrous eyes is to be transported to the cosiest corner of heaven.
To be with her even for a moment is to taste immortality'

I enjoyed doing this series of Raj books. The British Raj in India has always fascinated me
where Britishers could afford to have 2 or more wives. Over the centuries female dancers have appeared in various incarnations, frequently as temple dancers dedicated to the Gods, for dance is believed to have divine approval. Her mystique continued during the Raj and her popularity flourished amongst the English sahibs.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Book Cover: Making India Work

'What's wrong with this country?' is a question we often ask ourselves in spite of the fact that India is one of the world's fastest growing economies. We know the answers too: poverty, mismanagement and corruption. William Bissell in Making India Work puts forward his ideas that, if implemented, will make India a great nation.

Working on Making India Work has been no less than a journey for me. I tried all options from boatmen pulling a boat to an aerial view of fishermen to an attractive portrait of a farmer's wife on the cover but none worked. There definitely was a problem in understanding the target audience. The final cover that went to Press turned out to be a simple palette of Green.

Though, yes it reminds me of my experience when i stop by FabIndia and see it displayed at the counter. I often smile then...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Book Cover: Memories of Life in Lhasa under Chinese Rule

Memories of Life in Lhasa is Tubten's
autobiography who was arrested while defending the Dalai lama's palace, and after four years in prisons and labor camps, he spent almost two decades in Lhasa as a requisitioned laborer and 'class enemy'

While searching for images of Potala palace for this cover, i often wondered how the palace is from it as beautiful as it is on the outside?
This is one of the options that i had done. I tried to move away from the common Red/Black color scheme here, that is often used for such covers.

I often feel that i have a strange connection to monks, to Buddhism. I perceived myself to be looking at the Potala palace and reminiscing my days there. Little did i understand that time that i was creating a "mood" cover. This is one of my few covers that went ahead smoothly.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Book Cover: Killing the Water

It was pouring in Delhi that day...quite so that i even took a lift to get out of my apartment.. I felt it was the perfect day to do this cover. For i had the exact emotion in my mind and i knew i would be able to get it on paper. As a designer, i feel there are days you know when you know you are going to crack it. None of us want to miss it.

The title story "Killing the Water" runs across a family who constantly fight with water level entering their house. They try of all the methods to raise their ground level and build a new house.
Till then their pond breeds fishes, which is a source of their bread and butter but one day even the pond water fails to endure...

This is one of the covers that went ahead smoothly and the author liked it :-)

Attaching the author's comments here..
Wonderful. You did an amazing job with the cover. Everyone who's seen it has only had strong words of praise. I did receive my copies of the book and I'm very happy with the book.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Lamp: Warli Festive Dance

Each hole is a thought, which when perforated on paper, radiates light which eventually forms a pattern. This pattern in turn reflects a feeling, a thought that perhaps makes the ugly beautiful. Try switching the lamp on in the rainy season, it's the perfect weather...

Handmade paper has been one of my favourite working materials. The density and coarseness of paper makes the product substantial. The pattern on this lamp is the Warli festive dance in the boundary and a wavy fish in the centre, floating in water. There are small-little holes incorporated within the design which form a separate pattern on its