Urban Stories (working title) seeks to explore the myriad hues and dimensions of the culture of the city of Mumbai through a collection of stylized visual essays. A visual experiment of sorts, Urban Stories will employ such diverse genres as collage and typography, illustration and photography. The resulting collection will emerge as a unique narrative of Mumbai, its pasts and presents, peoples and places.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Million dollar Manhour

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Aging Backwards 2006-1953

Dream Time


Citygirl, Stolen Hours

Sunday, July 09, 2006


THE project is mid way.. and so far, we've learnt a lot about the city, good and bad. Most of the last week or so, its been either the rains or the riots, so just been couped up at home. With regards to graphic design, its been very satisfying to actually have the time to work and experiment.. To try and break cliches, playing with colours and forms.
Currently, each graphic essay is a stand alone piece.. covering a range of topics from sexuality to urban identities to architecture.. (stil workin on them..)What needs to be done is linking them up, making them part of a cohesive whole with text and classification (temporal aspect: hoping that works out). That should take shape once all the pieces are ready.. Looking at about 18-20 pieces right now, some are very detailed, some not so detailed.. with the post modern view evident in the text/ typo on each piece.. I see the final presentation also as something that one can experiment with..work creatively with..
Though for a project like this, research has been very specific to each piece..nevertheless have learnt a lot about the city..mainly photography and print media reserach have been key.

In progress..

some of the works in progress.. opinions and comments welcome..

(all works are as yet not complete.. a lot more refining and linking up to do..prose to be added..etc)
Santros. Autos. Pigeons and Dogs; Mumbai Traffic..

Andheri station at its monsoon best..

an improvised local chart on the cheapest things you get in mumbai..

Pixel Chawl..

In Mumbai, the capital of India's TV industry, soaps are dished out by people far more intelligent than the content they dish out..

Andheri Station Pics..

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Face in a frame..

There are more universes in Mumbai than one can ever want to know or even dream of knowin
g. Leave alone understanding. Faces betray a host of things about a person: their heritage, opinions, lineage, community, lifestyles, thoughts, choices, economic status, concerns .. the list is endless. Mumbai is, relatively speaking, the only Indian city that encompasses such a wide demographic of peoples. And, cautiously, revels in it.

Am working on a piece only comprising peoples' faces from photos to ids to portraits to everything else..

More photos..

More photos of the city/ first week of June..

Textures, textures, textures

From spray paints to rusted tin sheets to fish scales to leaf patterns: textures can be found in any thing in the urban city. And Mumbai abounds in them. Just the texture and state of dereliction gives some interesting textures.

The chawl/ pixel art piece ..

Full time work on the project got off to a stuttering start with some major computer problems..thats now fixed.

Wanted to keep the grime-black-ramshackle look of the worli chawls intact in the piece, even though pixel art is known to be more clean, and crisp (for lack of a better word). The color scheme is thus greatly limited to olive green-gray-black to get that oppressive-army barrack feel. Work still in progress..
And of course video game parlance is juxtaposed in thh context of everyday chawl life.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Mumbai's Chawls..

..5 floors. 12x18x10 ft houses. Common toilets. Water in tanks. No privacy. No space. No time. Multi Religious. Middle Class. Kites. Ganapati Pujas Navratris and New Years. Govinda. Children Children Children. Bais. Lungis. Cricket. Black Walls. Nicknames. Kohli May Queens. Pigeons. Bollywood. PCO Booths. Barbers. Dogs and Cows. Pav Bhaji centers. Rubble. Cycles. Motor Bikes..
The oldest chawls of Mumbai were built between the World Wars by people who had made money in WW1. Originally modelled on army barracks, the large influx of mill workers into Mumbai flooded the tenements in the 70s and 80s. At first, it was inhabited only by mill workers but soon their families too joined them. Inspite of the lack of space, people did not move for a host of reasons: rising prices, proximity to down town Mumbai, proximity to work and the addictive community feeling that came with staying in chawls.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Pixel Art

The piece I'm working on now is on the chawls of Mumbai: corresponding life in the chawls to a game. A battle against time, a battle for space. Hence I'm using the gaming style.

I'm trying a style I've always wanted to do: Pixel Art. Pixel art is art drawn pixel by pixel and can be done on most graphics packages. Its quite time consuming, but the final effect looks great. The final result has a very video-game feel, 2d feel.

Technically, its based on an isometric grid: thats just like the stuff engineers work on. A little research on pixel art and i found that its like a whole universe of pixel artists out there. Pixel art uses the isometric view: an engineering technique that is a perspectiveless view. Everything is based on a diamond grid at an angle of 30 degrees. (on the comp, its at 26.565 degrees to be exact).

Photos from Worli...

Photos from Worli ... 2