The thing is, I am batsh*t crazy about Bollywood movies. The real paisa-vasool masala variety, mind you.
I know not the coolest thing to admit but what can I say, Shahrukh Khan could never make me go weak in the knees the way Govinda could. And then came Minimal Bollywood Posters in my life and I fell in love all over again. I mean really, how could I not fall in love with the creative genius who comes up with this:
So, like a true fangirl I slashed my wrist to write a letter to my one true love: Akshar Pathak, the man behind this hugely entertaining venture (kids, don’t slash your wrists – use a bold, red font; same effect, less pain! You are welcome.). What started out as a fun exercise to keep himself happy has turned Akshar into a social media rockstar, with everyone waiting to see what he will come up with next. His deconstructed posters use minimum possible graphics to convey dialogues or emotions and even characters invoked from iconic Bollywood and Hollywood movies. The current set of posters on famous American TV-series, re-imagined with Bhojpuri titles is rib-ticklingly hilarious. I honestly think what Amul Topical does to current affairs, MBP does for Pop Culture currently.
We ended picking Akshar’ brain about MBP and life in general (which was actually a screening test for a f f f f f-future marriage proposal) under the garb of interview for H h h h h-housedelic. Come join us for a fun Q and A with the supremely talented artist behind the Minimal Bollywood Posters.
Can you please describe yourself? How did you end up where you are right now?
You might describe me as someone who’s had one foot in design and one foot in humour. And I’ve never felt at odds with myself.
How did I end up designing graphic? Well, I loved sketching and painting when I was very young, creating Batman & Shaktimaan mashup-up comics. Choose a job you love, goes the old cliche, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life. So I have sort of embodied (or at least tried to embody) this truism. My work is confident, but I hope it also gives a feeling that it’s done for my own pleasure as much as it is in response to a client’s brief.
What categories of crafts/art work do you do?
I work on Adobe Creative Suite. Mainly computer arts.
What prompted you to start Minimal Bollywood Posters?
I came across minimalist poster designs by Ibraheem Youssef for Quentin Tarantino’s movies. No one in India had really explored this style of design for movie posters, so I thought I’d give it a shot and that’s how it all began.
Minimal Bollywood Posters started as a fluke. I just created four-five posters and put them up on the internet but I had no idea that it’ll go underground viral and make my life what it is now. Tweetard happened because most intelligence on Twitter lasts for about a day at the most. And I’ve read the funniest and wittiest of all things over there, from political puns to really lame jokes. So the whole project was about hand picking those tweets and converting them into graphic form and have a whole gallery full of those. At the end of the day, Twitter is a sheltered workshop for evil geniuses.
Is this a full time profession? If not then, what is your day job like?
Graphic Designer. I’m working as a Brand Associate for Zomato, so it’s mostly marketing design. And social media. I reach home in the evening and that’s when I get on this and post something by eleven every night. I try and manage one post everyday. Also I sometimes feel like I’m handling three pages and Twitter accounts a lot better than most people can handle one. I’m not bragging though, just telling you that I have no life. I start in the morning with getting the pressing emails sorted first, aiming to create a few free hours for a cup of coffee and reading blogs. Job Title: Take your pick! Having always worked with start-ups, I do pretty much everything. Most of which is graphic designing and using the office internet for downloading torrents. I consume movies, comics, books and podcasts like there’s no tomorrow.
For me, ‘night time is the right time’ to work. All day is spent running after ideas, but then all the good ideas chase you right before your head it about to hit the pillow. I get all my best ideas when I’m walking or sitting and doing nothing. So I justify sitting and doing nothing as a part of working as well. My creative process is a mix of inspiration, procrastination, binge eating, napping and random internet surfing.What’s your strongest memory of your childhood?
My mother telling me that my father ‘makes buildings’ because ‘architect’ was too long a word for a5 year old kid to understand. Therefore, I spent a good chunk of my childhood believing that my father was a mason and we are probably very poor.
If you could choose your parents, who would you choose as your mother and father from any fictional/non fictional Bollywood character.
Both would be from DDLJ. Mother would be Farida Jalal and father would be Anupam Kher. It’s probably awesome to have your father high-five you when you tell him you flunked all your exams.
What’s your favourite art work?
Of mine, it’s probably this. I’m working on giving new meaning to old Hindi proverbs and I’m calling this project μhavare.
And if you had to be described by others in one word, which word would you hope they used?
I guess ‘witty’ and all the other synonyms of it.
If you could try out any job for a day, what would you like to try?
My dream job is not having a job.
How do we reach you? Email / Website / FB / Where can we buy your products?
You can reach me on my email: firstname.lastname@example.org or get in touch through the Minimal Bollywood Posters FB page for any queries.