Friday, February 20, 2015

Meet the Illustrator Gurus of the #6FrameStoryChallenge

When the idea of the #6FrameStoryChallenge began brewing in our office, we were mildly sceptical. Would there be any enough takers? Would illustrators be open to the idea of creating art that is attached to the CC-BY license? Will creating 6 frames be too time-consuming? Well, you get the drift. But we also allowed ourselves to be swept away by fierce waves of optimism and decided to test the waters with some of the most talented illustrators in the country.

So we reached out to some of our favourite artists and asked if they would consider being involved in the #6FrameStoryChallenge. Essentially, we were asking if they would contribute a 6-frame story, popularize the idea of donating art for a good cause (our open-source story publishing platform) and help pick top entries. Our apprehensions melted when most of them agreed instantly and with infectious enthusiasm. We can't thank them enough for being so supportive, generous and adventurous.

Yes, we're talking about our 8 Illustrator Gurus for the #6FrameStoryChallenge and since they'll be picking the top 3 winning entries, we would like for you to get to know them (and their work) better. We'll be announcing the winners for the #6FrameStoryChallenge soon, so do stick with us.


Rajiv Eipe
It was Rajiv's illustrations that we first revealed as part of the #6FrameStoryChallenge. And we now realize what a brilliant idea that was because it clearly set the bar extraordinarily high. Perhaps Rajiv's illustrations turned out to be so fabulous because he was surrounded by inspiration: his wife had gone for a tree-planting drive, and his neighbour – the 'Garden Uncle' – is constantly fussing over his plants.


See Rajiv's illustrations of the Amazing Tree-Planting Man for the #6FrameStoryChallenge. And to see more of his work, click here.

*****

Anjora Noronha
Artists can be very mysterious, and Anjora most certainly is. Working quietly in a hidden studio in Goa, it's not always easy to track her down. But when she heard about the #6FrameStoryChallenge, she surfaced in bouncy excitement and before we could even open our mouths to say Yay, she had introduced us to the inseparable duo that she had created.

Meet the super-adorable Bear and Cactus in Anjora's 6-frame story. And to see more of her work, click here.

*****

Somesh Kumar
We were thrilled when Somesh agreed to take a little time out to sketch for the #6FrameStoryChallenge in between other interests that he pursues with equal passion: running and animal rescue (Perch Project). After all, it isn't everyday that you come across Idli-eating dragons in Sambar Sagar, right?

And if you haven't seen this prolific illustrator's 6-frame story already, you can see it here. You can see more of his work on Tumblr or on his website.

*****


Soumya Menon
When we first saw Soumya's illustrations for the #6FrameStoryChallenge, we were immediately struck by its immense potential to be the perfect little wordless book. The amount of detail she has included is amazing! Soumya is no stranger to Pratham Books (she has illustrated 'My Fish! No, My Fish', 'I Want That One!') and we're always finding ways to collaborate with her. So Soumya, what's next?

You can see Soumya's 6-frame story here. All her other work is up here.

*****


Vinayak Varma
Vinayak's drawings have always had a touch of whimsy and we love that, just as most children do. We are amazed at how cleverly and imaginatively he has turned everyday objects into dragons in his 6-frame story. Vinayak spent two sleepless nights bringing these dragons to life and we're so glad that he did because it reminded us of the beauty in seeing things differently and the joy of day-dreaming.

Spot the dragons in Vinayak's 6-frame story. You can see his work on Facebook or on his website.

*****


Kalyani Ganapathy
Just as Kalyani had been glued to her chair while working on her 6 frames, we were glued to her magical and luminous illustrations as soon as we caught a glimpse of them. Evidently, life in the hills is working wonderfully for Kalyani whose illustrations have a mesmerizing quality. We particularly loved the flying woman in her 6-frame story.

You can see Kalyani's dreamy 6-frame story here. And to see more of her work, go to her website or Facebook page.

*****




Prashant Miranda

Prashant was in Benares doing some gorgeous illustrations when we asked him if he would be an Illustrator Guru for the #6FrameStoryChallenge. When he agreed, there was a lot of excitement within the PB team because we have always been eager to work with him. And you can see why! His distinct style of drawing, choice of colours and vibrant characters are ideal for children's books.

See Prashant's 6-frame story here: You can see Prashant's other illustration work here.

*****


Priya Kuriyan
Priya has worked on a whole bunch of lovely books with Pratham Books. But what can we say? We can't get enough of her illustrations! Priya has created a delightful pink dragon for the #6FrameStoryChallenge and we can't wait to see the adventures that will be spun around this legendary creature. 

You can see Priya's 6-frame story here. To see more of her work, go here

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