Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My City

Here are three ATCs that I painted of my city, Hyderabad. I've been living here for nearly ten years now, and at first the city really got under my skin... it still does, but in the way of Lady Gaga's face implants. The old and the new are just randomly thrown together in my city, and very often people are in such a hurry to go on to their next ill-conceived building monstrosity that they leave the newly finished one just lying on the skyline, steel rods poking out like stiff umbilical cords that haven't been properly tied.

Here's a mess of buildings from the Old City. The old buildings belong to a hospital complex.

Right at the heart of the Old City, the Charminar. Constructed in 1591, it has become a symbol of Hyderabad.

And finally, the truly execrable Buddha statue plunked in the middle of Hussain Sagar, a lake dating back to the sixteenth century. You have to see it to believe how disproportionate its dimensions are. A good example of how one simply can't replicate the artistic style of a long-gone period. The statue's claim to fame is that it's been hewn out of one giant granite block, and that it first sank to the bottom of the lake taking with it all those involved in setting it up (1992). Or so the myth goes.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Awkward Love

Really crazy swap. Here are my ATCs, done as cartoons. Impossible not to use double entendre for such a topic, and that's just what a lot of us did.

All of them were done with watercolour pencils and here and there a bit of regular watercolours. The last one was a great hit with everybody.

Monday, July 18, 2011

I Love Klimt

This was the name of the swap on Illustrated ATCs that took place earlier in the year. Yes, I love Klimt too. All the glitter and the sensuousness can be quite heady. We could interpret Klimt any way we wanted, straight copies (quite difficult to do on such a small scale) or 'Klimt-style' as they put it. Here are my paintings.

Adele as an Indian socialite. It was her haircut that  really fascinated me, and I just extended that bob into a bun.

One of the ladies, and one of the fish, from Goldfish. Delicious or what?

I love Klimt's Hope. This is another Indianised version.

And, finally, I 'Klimted' good old Gustave himself.

All in all, great fun with watercolours and iridescent paints. ATC sized, all of them.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

A Really Long Time!

I see that I haven't uploaded anything in quite a while. Have been working on my art, though. Let me put up this fortune teller first of all. The reference was from my student and friend Rhoda Alex's photograph. I like the way he's touching up his signboard.

He was done in watercolours, with some white and black ink squiggles. ATC size. I need to send him off to another artist in another country. That's where I've really fallen behind, getting my paintings off to the destinations they should have been in by now. May and June were bad months, when Life decided to do a donkey act, kicking at me randomly, repeatedly, and sometimes viciously.

Friday, April 30, 2010


An art-historian friend of mine gave me a stack of cards measuring 13x18 cm. They're rather interesting to work on, because the thin paper that's stuck on them is very absorbent. Just touch the brush to it and I swear you can hear it go SSHHHLOOOOP as it sucks in the paint. I thought I'd paint these quick heads... just features and expressions straight from the brush.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

All Sort of Windows

More postcard-sized watercolours on handmade paper. These pooches going on a drive were done from emdot's photograph on Flickr.

I painted these brushes in a milk-jug from 1Happysnapper's Flickr upload.

Here's the greatest erection any man ever got up for a woman, the Tajmahal, seen from the Red Fort in Agra, where Shahjahan spent his final years in imprisonment. This is the view of the Taj I like the best, and I always wonder how it must have felt for a king to view his creation from prison. Thanks to rednivaram for the reference.

Another Islamic window, this time from the Charminar in my city. This was painted from a photograph I took when I went on a photo-walk with the Hyderabad Photography Society. The burqa clad girl in the picture actually ran back to the window and briefly opened her veil for me to photograph her.

From elNico's photograph on Flickr, this one shows a sunset bringing back some dreary windows to life.

This time the colours are more or less true to the paintings, but these images are not clear at all. I have to get me a scanner, a refrain I've been whining for awhile now.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Travel Windows

The 'new' exchange at WetCanvas is getting old, and I still have many more windows to paint. I thought I might do a little cut-and-paste, taking out pictures from my journal and sticking them on postcards. Here are four pictures that I'm thinking of cutting up.

This first one shows the view from my sixth floor window at Hotel avenue Regent in Kochi. It looks better than it does here, but unfortunately it takes up all of the page, and cutting it to postcard size would mean leaving out the drapery or the sunlight on the wooden floor. Let's see what can be done...

This one is the scene through the windshield of a Meru Cab, with the driver frowning in concentration as he makes his way through the chaotic traffic of my city. No problems with cutting this one to size.

Here's one of a plane seen through the large windows at Kochi airport. I always reach there much ahead of time, and always draw the scene outside. I have more aeroplanes, and am thinking of painting window frames on them.

Here's my favourite, that I'm finding very hard to tear out from my journal. Kochi airport again, with this little French boy looking out the window.

All of them are on handmade paper which has a generous sprinkling of dried petals. I used my Gioconda charcoal pencil, watercolours, and my trusty Sakura brush pen that gets past all airport security.