By Udit Chaudhuri
This one is for the die-hard Amitabh Bachchan fan! Coffee-table publication ‘Amitabh Lexicon’ has web designer, singer, marketing professional…Indroneil Maitra hit the limelight as a graphic artist with his design of the cover and 26 mischievous AB renderings…
The name Amitabh Bachchan evokes a gamut of emotions; a potpourri of thoughts flitting from his various filmi looks to his style-file to his commandeering baritone… Talk a dictionary of the Big B and one wonders what it is all about? And what kind of illustrations would it need?
Well, Indroneil – multifaceted as he is – was approached by noted film critic, Bhawana Somaya and asked to create an ‘identifying element’ for each of the 26 alphabets that would denote something to do with the Big B. The idea was to design a light-hearted fun element that would visually bring to life all of Big B’s movie icons, dress styles, dialogues and related tidbits.
So we have a WOW bunch of AB illustrations where, ‘A’ is for arrow from Toofan, ‘K’ for the knot on Amitji’s shirt in Deewar, ‘I’ for ink to the poet’s characterisation in Alaap, ‘N’ for nicotine integral to the movie Family, or even ‘E’ immortalising Anthony Gonsalves’ egg… its fun discovering them for yourself!
“I am an intensely creative guy, always fuelling my passion for colour, line and form,” says Indroneil. Being an Amitabh fan and a total movie buff was an added advantage. “I used a damp paper-sheet and painted water-colour lines on them. The effect was almost ephemeral, somewhat translucent image, like an impression a hero creates in our imagination,” he explains.
Encouraged to have a grounded education; Indroneil graduated in Political Science, while simultaneously pursuing Commercial Art in his early days in Kolkata. He had shown a remarkable bent towards the arts even as he played the child artiste in Mrinal Sen’s Kharij or challenged his father that he could draw anything to the count of 10! Shift to Mumbai and his exposure into the field of advertising; moving fast, learning along the curve… to working, as he is today, for a hi-tech mobile TV company.
“There’s just one way to describe me,” he smiles. “When I look at the sky at any time, I see millions of tones and shades!” So is with life; lexicon-like!