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NH1 Design takes us through its approach behind freshly branding a local Indian street food outlet while ensuring that it retains an identity credible of being authentic, fun, young and affordable.

Brief

The Ahmadabad market had been selling anything but authentic Vada Pav (typically, a local Mumbai delicacy); brands were serving it with cheese, Spinach, and cholle (a form of peas). The essential idea for Majja, a quick-service restaurant selling Indian street food as a branded and hygienic experience, was thus to reinforce the delicacy’s authenticity. Targeting the youth and office-goers, who prefer a quick snack at an affordable price, the challenge was to create a brand synonymous with authentic taste, fun, young and affordability.

NH1 - Branding

The Concept

The word Majja (fun) is commonly used across India, especially in Gujarat. We created a fun verbal brand language that could be easily understood across different languages and cultures – a friendly tone of voice that completely aligned with the brand ethos.

The Solution

The visual story was inspired by the street life of Mumbai. The use of illustrated stories of people and the streets of Mumbai further emphasised the authenticity of the Vada Pav.

NH1 - Branding
NH1 - Branding
NH1 - Branding
NH1 - Vada Pav
NH1 - Branding
NH1 - Branding
NH1 - Branding
NH1 - Branding
NH1 - Vada Pav
NH1 - Vada Pav
NH1 - Vada Pav
NH1 - Vada Pav
NH1 - Vada Pav

Together, the visual and verbal language established a consistent set of assets for the brand. Every touch-point was meticulously detailed. Applications included signage, environmental graphics, packaging, stationery, website, adverts, tent cards, floor graphics, social media posts, uniforms, food trucks, menu, danglers and others.

NH1 - Vada Pav
NH1 - Vada Pav
NH1-Vada Pav

Published in Issue 38

This issue, we try to explore different views from many well-known studio owners and senior designers. While Anthony Lopez of Lopez Design shared tips on what a studio looks for in a designer, Mohar Ray from Codesign highlights the key aspects that play a significant role and make the difference in whether you are hired or not as a promising designer. Also, this issue has an insightful article on ‘Branding with reason and love’ from Itu Chaudhuri, founder ICD (Itu Chaudhuri Design) along with Siddhi Ranade, explaining his tools of story telling through his unique style of illustrations. This issue is a must read for a talented graduate to a branding expert. Order you copy and enjoy reading it!

 

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Today, caricatures are not only synonymous with political and social commentary in newspapers countrywide but also an inseparable part of various digital expressions. Their conscious and sub-conscious existence in our psyche and social interactions cannot be ignored. All thanks to a wide range of talented caricature artists India continues to hone. We highlight 11 of them.

“Caricature – a picture, description or imitation of a person in which certain striking characteristics are exaggerated in order to create a comic or grotesque effect.”

Colloquially also labeled as cartoons, the word “Caricature” comes from the Italian words “Carico” and “Caricare”, translating ‘to load’ or to ‘exaggerate’. Having gained momentum since Italian siblings Annibale and Agostino Carracci applied this semantic to their proportionally blown-up portrait sketches in the 1590s, caricature today as an art form enjoys exclusive social appreciation worldwide.

While India has a vast history in the evolution of its art, transition in the consciousness of modern-day caricature here came to be at different times and places through the course and context of Indian politics, particularly as India’s independence movement gained momentum through print.

The British Punch had begun to print and circulate Indian vernacular editions in colonial India since the 1870s. Soon, an increasing number of Indian artists began to make their presence felt in print and caricatures started to take nationalistic tones as their impact on the movement came to be realised.

Fast forward to contemporary times, illustrators and caricaturists are increasingly flourishing across the landscape of Indian design. Here are 11 of these noteworthy caricature artists:

1. Bharat KV

Bharat KV is the founder of BKV Arts as a caricaturist. His works present a light-hearted, vibrant and easygoing approach to things. He does this using multiple shades of bright colours fused with a particular emphasis on expressions. One can easily grasp the nature of his subjects without having to worry about whether they know the actual personalities in reality or not.


2. Chetan Patil

A BFA from Sir J. J. Institute of Applied Art, freelance Illustrator and Visualiser Chetan Patil from Mumbai has worked with Hindustan Times Newspaper and CreativeLand Asia. His caricatures are deeply graphic with the use of sharp colour tones, shapes, fonts and geometry. Unapologetically un-minimalistic, he mixes a range of complex elements within one frame. Almost a ‘not for the faint hearted’ kind of boldness in depiction.


3. Keya Mahata

Keya Mahata is a caricature and a concept artist presently working in a gaming production company. Her work exclusively features many-an influential fantasy and real-life women representing and exuding inspiration. Colours full of life and vigour, though with subtle lighting, represent the essence of her style. The dominance of the characters against their surroundings is a constant across her range of work, largely influenced by gaming.


4. Manoj Sinha

Manoj Sinha is currently associated with multiple Indian newspapers at the Hindustan Times group. His caricature works include not only portraits but also full-length representations of characters. Unhesitating to draw them as he sees them, he is a keen advocate of pencil-work in his displays. Though seeming to stem from a considerable influence of politics, his work also includes global influencers from various other areas such as sport, film and the likes.


5. Mahboob Raja

A self-taught caricaturist, Mahboob Raja’s nature of work features diverse mediums in the form of watercolour and oil works, both digitally and on canvas. Apart from having being an illustrator art teacher, he has been associated with making some popular Indian animated TV commercials. Raja’s caricatures significantly bear the strong application and impact of watercolour effects in his interpretation of personalities, adding a touch of innocence to his subjects as a whole.


6. Prasad Bhat

Prasad Bhat is the sole proprietor of Graphicurry, an independent artist design studio based in Bengaluru. His caricatures prominently exude a strong presence and application of digital elements, leading to a graphic comic-like presence. Prasad’s work predominantly features characters from a seemingly strong influence of many-an-international TV series, films and celebrities – Pulp Fiction, Friends, Brad Pitt and the likes. The use of deep, high contrasting colours uniformly exists across his depictions.


7. Ramanjit Kaur Gabri

Designers - Ramanjit Kaur Gabri

After long being a visualiser in an advertising agency, Mumbai-based, Ramanjit Kaur Gabri turned into a freelance illustrator and caricature artist. Her choice of subjects prominently features many-a-powerful women in clear reflections of their real-life personas – Saina Nehwal, Sudha Murthy, Mary Kom, Arundhati Roy and Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw to name a few. Equally effective in pencil and colour, Ramanjit’s portraits are dynamic depictions against contrastingly no-nonsense plain backgrounds.


8. Shijo Varghese

A Fine Arts graduate from KSS School of Arts, Kottayam, Shijo Varghese started his career as an art teacher in his native village. The illustrator now based in Bengaluru is not shy to take outright liberty with asymmetrical geometric interpretations of his characters. His caricatures unapologetically present personalities beyond their socially perceived aura of “perfection”. Having authored three books, he now heads the design department at Planetsurf Creations.


9. Shesh Kiran

A Bengaluru-based caricature artist and Flash animator, Shesh Kiran, bears a decade of experience working with various multimedia outfits. Fun and quirky with vibrant colours, his characters come alive not just through their wide eyes and keen expressions but also through a keen amplification of their persona by effectively incorporating related accessories and surroundings elements as part of them. Simplicity that would especially appeal to the childlike; the not-so-serious kind.


10. Uday Mohite

Mumbai-based freelance Digital illustrator and caricature artist Uday Mohite’s strong depiction of hyper-realism evokes a mixed feeling of looking at a painting, sketch and photograph at the same time within a single frame. Caricatures of his subjects are not typically limited to the political arena but make for a good mix of characters from all around, especially film, television and social situations. The Sir J. J. Institute of Applied Art grad has also been a part of several leading newspapers like DNA and Mid-Day.


11. Varun Rao

Varun Rao, identifying himself under the title of Vartoons, features portraits of various forms – humans, animals, pop art and so on. Mostly influenced from real life, he exaggerates facial features while attempting to bring the desired effect upon the viewer. With a conscious effort to maintain the primary essence of the character, he highlights significant traits, be it the comical or elegant sides. Acrylic paints, oil paints, colour pencils and digital mediums are his usual ‘weapons’ of choice’.

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Art styles are often regarded as something personal and subjective. It tends to vary from person to person. But there are certain timeless styles and design (illustrations) trends that one cannot overlook or disregard. But all of these classic styles started out as mere fads, which inspired enough artists to carve a niche in the industry.

Hence, as an illustrator and as a designer, it is pertinent to understand current trends and styles, which pave the way for future art styles. Here is a comprehensive list of trends to look out for in 2021.

01 Lines

Concept

Illustration by Priyanka Karyekar

 

Illustration by Sajid Wajid Shaikh

 

Outlines are one of the most critical factors of an illustration. In their varying colours, thickness and texture, lines can create a world of difference to the artwork, each bearing a unique style and offering an exciting new dimension to the art piece. Outlines are also the most susceptible to change. Each season brings a new trend to outline an artwork. And for the most part of 2020, thin outlines were in fashion. This trend is expected to continue this year as it gained momentum only in the second half of 2020.


02 A whole New Dimension – 3D


Illustrations by Amritpal Singh

 

Three-dimensional pieces, or 3D artworks, are expected to grow considerably this year. This might come as no surprise to many as the dominance of 3D in design space is evident in recent years. Though three dimensional, the composition for these illustrations is expected to remain minimal, drawing inspiration from their two-dimensional counterpart. Colours for these 3D illustrations may range from strong, vibrant shades to soft pastels, depending on the context of the artwork.


03 Enchanting Nostalgia


Illustrations by Darian Pereira

 

Charming composition with simple outlines and shapes with few necessary details seems to be the way forward. Inspired by the classic style of cartoons from the 1970s and ’80s, this style can invoke a strong sense of nostalgia if only one can remember days of the past.


04 Abstract all the way

Illustartion by Illustrator Saurabh Chandekar

Illustration by Saurabh Chandekar

 

AnandRK - Enlighten Illustration by Anand Radhakrishnan

 

Mesmerizing shape and vibrant colours are expected to reign this year through a quirky yet clever style. Catering to a niche audience, these illustrations can seem to be nothing more than a thoughtless scribble at first glance, when in fact, they are cleverly composed, well thought out pieces. The Colour palette is often heavily saturated, with varying shades of neon undertone, with colour schemes belonging to clash, split complementary, double split complementary, tetrad and triadic.


05 Illustrations in Motion

Static illustration may not always solve our requirements, and here is where strategically composed illustration presented via video comes into play. This trend has been sturdily gaining popularity throughout 2020 and is expected to grow further in 2021.


06 Feel Indianness

Imagination
Illustration by Ishan Trivedi

 

Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah

Illustration by Satish Gangaiah

 


Illustration by Lovely Kukreja

 

India has always been a land of culture and arts. And our artists, illustrators, and animators are once again claiming the global spotlight in the art industry. Works of illustrators such as Ishan Trivedi, Satish Gangaiah, Lovely Kukreja are taking the world by storm. Artworks based on Indian mythology recounting the stories of ‘Puranas and ‘Itihasa ’ are some of the most popular themes online. Apart from this, illustrations are also used to ignite social revolution by narrating the issues faced by the Indian public and raising awareness for societal wrongs.

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Where everyone is in the lockdown and may feel depressed by the glooming news from the world outside, some of the Indian designers have taken the challenge of keeping themself motivated. Many have been creating on a regular basis and some of them are featured here. So, while you are keeping yourself and your family inside and safe, be inspired to create and share with others.


If you have created something during lockdown which is worth featuring here, then please DM us or email us at contribute@creativegaga.com. And while posting, the use of @creative_gaga, @creativegaga #Creativegaga be a good idea to reach a creative audience.


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