Techie speak Life & Style

Artistic pursuits of techies

Vishnu Balal’s wall art at a restaurant

Vishnu Balal’s wall art at a restaurant   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Not many know that paintings of yesteryear actors Prem Nazir and Sathyan on the compound wall along Manaveeyam Veedhi were done by four employees of Technopark – Rony M Peter, Kishore Krishnan, John Mathew Panicker and Santosh Kumar. The wall art at Muffin House cafe’s outlets at Ambalathara and Kesavadasapuram were done by Technopark employee Vishnu Balal. Similarly, Narayanan Thevannur and Jyothish Kumar, working at the IT hub, also draw inspiration from art, with their cartoons appearing regularly in Malayalam dailies and magazines.

There are many employees in Technopark who strike a fine balance between their profession and their passion. And art is a major attraction, with several painters, caricaturists and cartoonists honing their talent even when they are climbing corporate ladders. A few among them are professionals in the field, while others take to social media to showcase their art and others keep it within their friends’ circles.

Renjith Gopinath

Renjith Gopinath   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Renjith Gopinath, an employee with Toonz Animation for the last 17 years, is sought-after to make caricatures [of guests] at in-house functions and at events at the IT hub. “I have done over 1,500 caricatures, including those of foreigners who visit Technopark. This is not an extension of my job at Toonz. There, I work according to the script or the vision of the director. But a caricature is my own perspective and I thoroughly enjoy the process. It feels good when my ‘subjects’ appreciate what I have done,” he says. Actors, politicians, cultural icons, sportspersons and the like have all been sketched by him.

Renjith Gopinath’s caricature of Kavalam Narayana Panicker

Renjith Gopinath’s caricature of Kavalam Narayana Panicker   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

It was his association with Manaveeyam Theruvorakoottam that saw Rony decorating the walls of Manaveeyam Veedhi, the city’s cultural corridor. A graphic designer with DeviceDriven, he also does sketching, calligraphy and illustrations. His works adorn religious institutions, schools (UP School, Karyavattam) and restaurants (Poomaram at Akkulam).

Rony M Peter at work at UP School, Karyavattam

Rony M Peter at work at UP School, Karyavattam   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

According to Vishnu, a show director at Toonz, wall art and doodling give him creative freedom as these works are not client- or target-oriented. “Some clients have little idea about wall art and leave everything to me,” laughs Vishnu.

Vishnu Balal’s wall art

Vishnu Balal’s wall art   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

He has designed the interiors of houses and restaurants, and makes doodles on shoes and mobile covers. “People place orders after seeing my Instagram page. Sometimes, I frame my doodles and send it to the client. My weekends and holidays are devoted to these assignments. I take leave when I have to travel to do wall art in places outside Thiruvananthapuram,” he says.

Vishnu Balal with his wall art

Vishnu Balal with his wall art   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Candid strokes

For Narayanan, an employee with Aries Epica, cartooning has been a childhood passion and, having won prizes during his student days, he never wanted to stop using his pencil. “A cartoon is the best way to convey your stand on any issue. Although I have been trained as a painter, I enjoy being a cartoonist. A cartoon is my creation — the thought, drawings, handwriting, colouring....,” Narayanan says.

Narayanan Thevannur

Narayanan Thevannur   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

He ran a cartoon column, ‘Techno Toons’, in the city supplement of a Malayalam daily for four years. Narayanan plans to hold an exhibition of his cartoons soon.

A cartoon by Narayanan Thevannur

A cartoon by Narayanan Thevannur   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Jyothish, design lead with RM Education Solutions Pvt Ltd, is also a prolific cartoonist. Although he restricts it to his Facebook page as of now, he posts his works almost on a daily basis. “There is no dearth for topics in the current scenario. Satire is always the best way to make people think as well as laugh,” says Jyothish.

Jyothish Kumar

Jyothish Kumar   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

He is a caricaturist and painter as well and often draws caricatures as gifts for his colleagues and in-house events. Two years ago, he exhibited his paintings along with his friends in Kochi.

A cartoon by Jyothish Kumar

A cartoon by Jyothish Kumar   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Suvindas E is also in demand among his friends to make caricatures. “They are often gift options at weddings,” says Suvin, an employee with QuEST Global.

Suvindas E

Suvindas E   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

He is into cartooning, sketching and painting and is now learning coffee painting. “I picked up coffee painting from YouTube tutorials and gifted a coffee portrait to my friend on his birthday,” says Suvin.

Suvindas E’s coffee painting

Suvindas E’s coffee painting   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

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Printable version | Sep 25, 2020 6:37:34 PM |

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