Sunday, May 24, 2009

Past Ke भूत

Sometimes I wonder if the word भूत which stands for Past in Hindi is because the Past acts like a Ghost most of the times. Ghosts of the Past can be haunting, tempting or both. It's nearly impossible to escape them as we all love to see things in retrospect and get nostalgic about the past- the भूत !

Most of the blogs I visit everyday are full of posts which are nothing but a nostalgic record of the past. What makes past so hauntingly tempting??

Something happened today...and I am unable to decide, if The Past was more beautiful than The Present? Can't do much about it....but still can't help contemplating over it...

Listening to Star Wars Background Score by the Master - John Williams! Awesome...Music is something which can never become just get better and better as the time passes!

Speaking of which, here is a Rare Kishore Kumar song from his unavailable film Door Gagan Ki Chhaon Mein

Meanwhile Neha has just posted a beautiful post on her blog, check it out!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

One Kharaab DVD Player, Boom & Piano

Last night my DVD Player refused to play any DVD for more than a couple of minutes after which it stopped automatically. I have to get a new DVD Player but before that I called up the ONIDA Service Center and gave them a piece of my mind.

ONIDA's after sales service sucks big time! Their engineers are not qualified, but are an expert in giving temporary solutions and permanent excuses.

My Resolution : I AM NEVER GONNA BUY OR USE ANYTHING FROM ONIDA EVER IN MY LIFE! & I'll Suggest you to stay away from this Brand!

As the DVD player played up games again. I decided to read something and while reading this wonderful essay by Alan Moore called Alan Moore's Writing For Comics, I downloaded Kaizaad Gustad's BOOM, which I wanted to see for a longtime. BOOM is a classic example of good plot going into a brainless direction. It's like Kanti Shah (Director/Producer of Gunda) trying to make a Guy Ritchie-sque diamond heist and all of a sudden feels he can add all the elements from Gunda to make the plot more interesting.

One good thing happened while watching BOOM was Jackie Shroff humming Jaa Re Ud Jaa Re Panchhi, one of my most favorite Bhoola Bisra Geet from Maya. Last I heard this song was some 5-6 years back on Vividh Bharti. I was searching for the song in my Hard Disk when I came across the instrumental version of the song, rendered wonderfully on Piano by Brian Silas. Since morning I am listening to some real rare old songs played by the maestro. Its truly a wonderful experience to listen to these old classics played on Piano.

Meanwhile, came across this really funny site, you shouldn't miss - The Editing Room : Abridged Scripts for Movies. Do check out...its hilarious!

Monday, May 18, 2009


Sunday just got over. I am really sleepy but wanted to write and post this before hitting the sack.

(Edit: I was just gonna post this when power failed and my laptop went off : these days my laptop runs on raw power, battery has died sometime back).

Last night I decided to be at home on Sunday and spend the day aimlessly to compensate for all the Sundays I have missed in last couple of weeks...or shall I say months. 2 Movies, one good reading session (I am reading and a book signing event later, I can say Yep! It was a day well spent...

I was lazying around, watching BBC's Documentary Divine Michelangelo between my afternoon naps when a very close friend called up to remind me I have to get a copy of Paths of Glory (the latest Jeffery Archer novel) signed for her at the book signing Jeffery was doing this evening at the Landmark.

I didn't know much about Jeffery Archer or his work (Mujhe Duniyawalon Maaf Karna). Anyway I did my research and was astonished to learn, his books do more business in India than any other nation in the world! No wonder the man was here to promote his latest book and do book signings (I'll wait for the day when Indians will read Neil Gaiman & Alan Moore the way Archer guy is being read here).

I planned to check out what this Ho-Hulla is all about, took Neha for company and went to Landmark. Landmark, Pune was so crowded that it reminded me of Andheri station at peak hours (Ahhhh I miss Mumbai!).

The Crowd

As I suspected earlier; the place was full of silly college girls and some Mahila type ki Yuvtiyaan &/or Mahilaayein trying hard to be Yuvtiyaan... Let me remind you this bunch of ladies is the most powerful lot we have in our nation, they can turn any Jeffery Archer into A Best Selling Author & any SRK into A Super-Duper Star...
(DISCLAIMER : I am not questioning JA/SRK's talent, they both are very talented and both deserve to be where they are, I am just praising the Naari Shakti & its shakti in mera gaaon mera desh).

Jeffery was yet to come, so I grabbed a copy of Brian Azzarello's Joker and started flipping thru the pages wondering if they will have a book signing by Brian Azzarello ever in India.

Jeffery arrived and as he started talking I was amazed. This man who sounded like a big snob in all his interviews is actually an interesting snob. I was really impressed when he said "I am not a writer, I am a story teller..." and made his point clear with a funny example to a bunch of college girls (I can't call them silly everytime) with blank expression on their faces.

I really wanted to read his work now! Kane & Abel looked really interesting, may be because the name sounded like the names of biblical brothers Cain & Abel. Picked a copy, the desciption given at the back cover was really interesting.
Book Signing

Book Signing started. I had to get a copy of Paths of Glory autographed, I planned to get my book signed too.
Jeffery signing My copy of Kane & Abel

I flipped thru the pages of Kane & Abel and I find the book pretty interesting! Will be reading it soon...

It's raining tonight...Weather will be good tomorrow...

I was going to write more ki Achanak:

"Doctor...Mujhe Chaaro Or Blue-Blue Nazar Aa Raha Hai...!!!"

"Koi Naa Puttar, So Jaa...It's Monday..."
Prakash Mehra the man behind Zanjeer and many other Amitabh Hits passed away. RIP Prakash Ji, you truly were Muqaddar Ka Sikandar!


Coming Up : Toony Version of another character from Watchmen :)

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Rorschach test on Photoshop

After a long-longtime, I tried my hands at sketching and coloring this afternoon.

I wanted to draw cute versions of The Watchmen. I haven't drawn or sketched for ages, so had to struggle a lot and before I could come up with something and I still was/am miles away from the result I was looking for.

Somehow managed to draw this toony version of Rorschach, my most favorite Character from Watchmen. Coloring has always been a challenge for me. I mostly do flat coloring on my cartoons. But this time I am determined to learn Photoshop properly and color my cartoons in a better way. So here are few colored versions of Rorschach. Have tried a little molding/shading in the following two versions & I think the outcome is yucky! Need to study more and practice harder...

Waiting for your feedback!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Contemplations Aur Do June Ki Roti

After working round the clock for more than a month (without a single day break), life has started settling down.

May of the new year is almost half over and before we know it will be June.

June means- I'll be completing my one year with BIG Animation, one year in Pune, one year of many new things. Anyway, I'll be taking a month long (unpaid) sabbatical from work this June.

Have lots of unfinished stuff to work on and hazaar other things to do in June. I have been postponing almost anything and everything to June. Things are getting added almost everyday to the to do list, which means June is going to be a little tighter month for me.

Have loads to read & write. Unable to decide from where to start. I hope by god's grace I'll be able to sit back and plan things properly before June. Contemplations...Contemplations...

Finished reading first two chapters (Dormant Beast & December 32) of Enki Bilal's Beast Trilogy.
Bilal is a master of sci-fi fantasy graphic stories, all his stories have a very strong emotional central thread which makes them stand apart from other sci-fis.
This trilogy was later converted into Beast Tetralogy with the release of fourth installment in 2007. The two chapters I got to read were collected in Bilal Library imprint of DC. I am desperately looking for next two stories as the story was getting interesting when the book ended with a cliffhanger climax!
I was looking for more of Bilal and finally downloaded Bilal's movie Immortel (Ad Vitam) based on his 1980 Graphic Novel The Carnival of Immortals. (Disclaimer : I don't download a movie till it's available, but Immortel is almost impossible to get anywhere). I have heard a lot of good and some not so good things about the film. I am yet to see the film so I'll keep my mouth shut till I see it.

Other books I am reading are:
Ashwin Sanghi's The Rozabal Line. If you are a sucker for conspiracy theories, ancient cultures & civilizations with a lot of factual information hidden in fiction, this is the book for you. I am loving the research which went behind the book more than the story of the book.

Gotham By Gaslight : Batman - 3 Part Miniseries by Mike Mignola.

Just saw Disney's Jungle Book (which is apparently the last movie supervised and produced by Uncle Walt). I liked it in bits & pieces. Disney's Animation is always of superb quality, but I wasn't very happy with the way Disney took liberty with Kipling's classic story.

After too much of naatakbaazi, which includes rubbing toothpaste on the scratched DVD, I got to see The Lion King on my Laptop & I immensly loved the movie, some of the sequences are simply mindblowing! This movie (and all the naatak, that went into getting and seeing it) deserves another post!

Things To Do :

  • Start finishing the work piling on my desk.
  • A back to back run of STAR WARS original trilogy on my khatara DVD player this weekend. IMHO the original trilogy rocks, I am simply blown with the narrative structure of it. It's like a text book for anybody who wants to write stories...
  • Read all twelve 100 Bullets TPBs in one go. Then there are other books too DKR, HUSH, SCALPED, Fables.
  • & then there are other DVDs too...

Ahhh so much to little time...

PS. Planning to get enrolled for Symbiosis' Diploma in Creative Writing in English course. Let's see...

Came across this wonderful blog on Golden Age Comic Books with a lot of Frazetta Art!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Another Little Post on Little Krishna

This is going to be the third consecutive post on Little Krishna. First Episode, which premiered this evening has got some real cool reviews, not only from the industry people but from the audience too. Seems like everybody loved it. Many more episodes to go... I know if I spoke a little more about animation, either it will start a debate or it's gonna result in a massive fall in visitors/comments count ;)

It happened to me once when I posted two posts back to back on Pixar. Though both of them are quite a hit with Google & one of them - 7 Creative Principles of Pixar by John Lasseter has been linked by many animation/non-animation educational sites, and it still fetches me a good number of visitors everyday thru those links & google. Anyway time to shut up and before I do that, I request you guys to see the show, if you haven't seen it already.

Will be back with my regular posts soon.

Monday, May 11, 2009

New Trailer : Little Krishna (Debuts Today)

Here is the new trailer for the series, hope you guys will like it :

Don't miss the show today @ 6.30pm on NICK! The super action packed first episode broadcasts today!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Fanboy Explodes!

My DVD Player is again playing games, its either not playing some DVDs or giving some major scratches to the DVDs it is able to play. It gave some Khatarnaak scratches on the Lion King DVD & I can’t express my angst and frustration after I saw the scratches on the DVD.I have decided to throw it away and get a New DVD Player ASAP.

Anyway, recently somebody asked me, “You still see (animated) Films like Lion King…”

What followed was a 45 minutes long debate and the last message she sent was, “I don’t ever want to talk to you again…”

When will Indians (sorry to generalize us here) grow up/evolve as an audience and start understanding things (read animation & comics) properly?

Not all the Animation & Superhero Films are meant for kids. Thankfully our market doesn’t have a supply of Hentai DVDs or else the DVD stores would keep them in Kids Section (like they kept Hardcore Adult Vertigo Graphic Novels in Kids Section in Landmark, Chennai) and parents will buy Hentai* for kids or might take kids for some intense animated films like Ghost In The Shell or Grave of the Fireflies just because its animated.

Grow up guys! Animation doesn’t always means Tom & Jerry!

Recently I saw a father taking his kids for ‘Watchmen’. Thankfully the ticket vendor refused to issue tickets for the Kid who was 8 years old & I heard the Father mumbling – “Comics ke upar bani film bachche nahin dekh sakte to kya matlab hai phir…” (Why can't kids see a film based on a comic book?)

This reminds me of a scene from one of my most favorite Shyamalan movie Unbreakable. Elijah Price (Samuel L. Jackson) who runs a Comic Art Store gets annoyed when a rich father wants to buy an original comic art for his four year old kid (comics are for kids, right?). Elijah shows him the door, but after giving him a piece of his mind :

Elijah Price: Do you see any Teletubbies in here? Do you see a slender plastic tag clipped to my shirt with my name printed on it? Do you see a little Asian child with a blank expression on his face sitting outside on a mechanical helicopter that shakes when you put quarters in it? No? Well, that's what you see at a toy store. And you must think you're in a toy store, because you're here shopping for an infant named Jeb.

(courtesy : imdb)

Anyway (changing the topic, otherwise I’ll go on & on & on…), talking of Watchmen, I recently got something which is real cool from a friend Alan Watts from UK. Alan stays in London and attends almost every book signing there, he has got a collection of Graphic Novels signed by great artists & writers like – Alan Moore, Dave Gibbons, Art Spiegelman et al.

I always drool looking at the pics of signings he posts on his Facebook Profile. One fine day, he made me an offer I couldn’t refuse – He would get me Alan Moore’s autograph this free comic book day. Alan Moore was supposed to sign with longtime collaborator artist Kevin O’ Neill (they have worked together on League of Extraordinary Gentlemen).

I kept on making and changing the list of books I wanted to get signed by Mr.Moore and bugging Alan (Watts) almost everyday.

Just one day before signings Paypal played games and my credit card (yep yep the same infamous credit card of Exuberant Shopper’s Guide fame) also expired. I wasn’t able to get books signed. But Alan was really kind to get me Alan Moore’s and Kevin O’Neill’s personalized signatures on his sketchbook (I have the digital copy, hard copy is yet to arrive). Here are the pics:

The Que

Alan Moore & Kevin O'Neill signing (Alan was wearing an Indian Kurta that day)

Alan Watts with Mr.Moore & Kevin (Kevin is signing for me in the pic)
Signatures!!!! Yay!!

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