Friday, June 10, 2005

Sticky Fingers

My current project is something fun -- a picture book for TULIKA, a Madras-based publishing house exclusive to children's publishing. They've been in the business for around ten years, I think, and have done more for children's books than all the moaners and complainers who curse the lack of children's books, but rarely make the effort to buy local titles.

Radhika Menon and Sandhya Rao of Tulika have been inviting me to do a book for them for years but it's only in the last few months that we finally got around to discussing specifics. It really got underway after Radhika came to see my show in Madras last December and suggested that I could do a book in the style of my multi-media collage paintings. So that's what I'm doing -- hence the sticky fingers. I've just got past the page-layout stage (i.e., setting up the pages of the right size and sticking in the coloured backgrounds in readiness for the images and text that'll go over them) and am now fiddling with little bits and pieces of coloured paper, cutting them out of different sizes shapes. There is something tremendously satisfying about collage! I think it's probably because the results far outstrip the effort required to achieve them -- it really doesn't take a whole lot of time to cut up paper and stick it down on yet more paper -- but at the end of that hour or two, ta-daaaa! Cool stuff happens.

I'm deliberately not discussing the title of the book and it's principle idea, because I'm always paranoid that someone quicker and smarter than me will immediately produce an identical book based on my concept, before I can get around to finishing mine. Then I'd have to start out all over again, which would be a bore. I promise to be more forthcoming when the book's ready to pop ... Which should be in a couple of months from now.

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