Friday, December 20, 2013

Sailing Away...

     As a helicopter pilot flying offshore regularly, I see small fishing boats fighting the raging waves in the middle of nowhere, with no one else in sight for miles. Keep wondering what kind of mettle these sailors are made of. Probably it is a question of their livelihood. In contrast, close to the harbour I also see these sailors sailing for fun, entertainment and sport. Life can be such an irony. What ever be the case, boats, big or small, are all really fascinating.
     Recently  I got a chance to witness a Regatta. Sport aside, the artist inside me jumped up with joy at the sight. The result is in front of you.
     Have a nice weekend.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Fishing boats @ Kakinada

     I am presently at the Port town of Kakinada on the eastern coast of India. Long time back this used to be a sleepy little fishing village. Fishing boats were  the only sea faring vessels here. Then people realised that it was a natural harbour. The traffic increased. A few years back oil was discovered off the coast in this region. The traffic just went on multiplying. The village became a crowded town with people jostling for breathing space. The fishing boats got pushed to a corner called the fishing boat harbour. Some of them found space in some water channels coming into the city. They also appear to be struggling for breathing space. 
     It was a lovely subject to paint. Hope I have done justice to it. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Lamayuru Monastery

    This is the Lamayuru Monastery in Ladakh, located at an altitude of 3,510 metres. It was built by the builder monk Rinchen Zangpo who is said to have built 108 monasteries in this region. It is one of the largest monasteries in Ladakh. It can house about 400 monks at a given time. It gets its name from the Lamayuru rock on which it was built. We helicopter pilots also call the area 'moon face' because of the way the terrain appears from the air. 
     I enjoyed painting this though was not satisfied with the results. It got over worked at places. Though I did manage a story for you all. Thanks and enjoy the week ahead.

Monday, October 28, 2013


     I was very fascinated with a flower called Delphinium. The lavender color was so mesmerizing. I simply could not resist the temptation to paint them. Some where down the line the painting appeared to go out of hand. Tried to salvage it some how. The result is here. Hope it looks respectable.

Saturday, October 26, 2013


     Well... JLT stands for 'Just like that'. Well this work was done just like that. No stories and no history lessons. Was in no mood for any serious work. Found an interesting picture and just decided to enjoy myself. Hope all of you like it. Have a nice weekend.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Hemkund Saheb

     Hemkund Saheb ji is a Sikh place of worship or a 'Gurudwara' as it is called. This one is dedicated to Guru Govind Singh, the 10th guru or teacher of the sikhs. Though the origin of this structure is quiet old, it was constructed in the present form in the 1960s. It is located at an altitude of 15000 feet surrounded by glacial lakes in the Himalayas in the state of Uttarakhand, India. The trek to this site is very tough and can be reached only during the months from May to September. The rest of the year it remains snowbound and unreachable. But faith makes devotees go through all the hardships. There are many who go there just for the sake of adventure and curiosity. Next time you get a chance try and make it. You will not regret. Have a nice day.

Sunday, July 21, 2013


     Kathakali is a highly stylized classical Indian dance drama which has its origin in the Indian state of Kerala in the 17th century. Traditionally there are 101 stories which are enacted in this form. Earlier the performances were designed to last the whole night however they have been modified with the changing times. Now they last for 3-4 hours. This dance form is noted for its colourful make-up, elaborate costumes, detailed gestures and well defined body movement. Percussion is the main accompaniment. The stage actually becomes a riot of colors. It becomes too tempting to resist painting. Hope this work conveys the story...!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Monstera Deliciosa

     Had spoilt two watercolors one after the other. Probably because of not getting enough time or too many distractions. Decided to paint some thing that would take a little less time and concentration. These lovely leaves have always fascinated me. They are called 'Monstera Deliciosa'. Have done two works earlier of the same subject. This was a quick fire work and was happy. Hope you all like it.

Sunday, June 23, 2013


     Pilots always love their aircraft and military pilots treat their machine as an extension of themselves. This large work was done for a pilot who had stopped flying this aircraft, 'a Jaguar', quite some time back but could not get over it. I am so happy that this work of mine has a home where it will be loved and taken care of. Hope you all love it too. 

Friday, June 14, 2013


     Although this picture is of a 'Sadhu' or an ascetic I prefer to call it Mystic because there is a veil of mystery surrounding them. Sadhus are ascetics, who have left behind all material attachments and live in caves, forests and temples all over India and Nepal. They are revered for the life style that they adopt to attain Moksha or liberation. They have no material belongings and lead the life of a gypsy. Some sects do not wear any clothes even in sub zero temperatures! The only thing that they use is ash to cover their body to give them warmth (It also gives them a scary look). However, reverence of sadhus is by no means universal in India. Historically and contemporarily, sadhus have often been viewed with a certain degree of suspicion, particularly amongst the urban populations of India. This is because of the rampant use of hash and opium. Also there are many who are actually not ascetics but posing as one to cover up some nefarious activities.
     Anyway found this pic of a sadhu clicked by my friend Debesh Sharma quite interesting and decided to paint it in oils on paper. Hope it portrays the mystery surrounding them.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

I got to move it move it !

     Well I was a bit tired of painting straight lines of old architecture which I found quite tedious. I was also in mood for some light work.Found this subject right in front of me while flying for offshore rigs. These oil rigs are massive structures. Some of them are self contained structures which can house 200 workers and in addition the machinery etc. Helicopters land on their helidecks. In fact they are an engineering marvel. Many of these rigs can be moved from one location to another. And to move them these small tug boats are used. The first time I saw them I could not believe it. Three or four of them together can shift these huge structures. Moral of the story.... 'United we stand, divided we fall.' 
     Enjoy !

Monday, May 6, 2013


     This is a painting of the Somnath temple, which has been a symbol of the resilience of the Hindu faith. No one knows when this temple was built originally. After the first time it was destroyed, it was rebuilt in 649 AD. This temple has been destroyed nearly a dozen times.... by the Persians, Arabs, Mughals, by rulers within the country and outside the country. It was looted of it's riches over and over and left to crumble. But some how faith always brought it back. It was finally rebuilt after India gained independence. Some additions are still being made! For reference I am also adding a picture of the state this temple was in before it was last built.
    This temple happened to be very close to where I am currently flying. So what better subject than this to paint. Hope you all found the story interesting and like the work above.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Huzoor Palace @ Porbandar

     I am in the land of 'The Mahatma' or 'Bapu' or 'Mahatma Gandhi' as the world knows him. Porbandar is his place of birth. This painting is of the 150 room palace of the erstwhile King of the erstwhile state of Porbandar. It was built in the early 20th century by the then King Natwar Singh. He named it 'Huzoor Palace'. Huzoor can be roughly translated as 'My Lord'. But before he could enjoy the fruits of his labour, India gained independence and his kingdom became a part of the Indian Union. Devastated, he migrated to UK. His son who inherited this palace keeps visiting but either due to lack of interest or resources, the palace is in a state of disrepair. What surprised me most was that the locals do not even know his name... so neither do I. What an irony, all this wealth and prosperity could not give him recognition. But, the whole world remembers Mahatma Gandhi who was born in a small house in this same place. It goes to prove that all your wealth cannot buy you what your good deeds can.
     Hope you all enjoyed this small bit of history and also like this work.       

Monday, March 11, 2013

Playtime 2

     There are times when I run out of patience and just want to play with colors... just chill ! This painting was the creation of one of those moments. At such times I just pick up a subject or at times start with nothing at all in mind and keep dabbling with colors. In this case I had not washed my palette since my last two or three paintings. Just picked it up, a rough drawing of the center rose... and I was on a roll ! It was 'Playtime'. It was an afternoon well spent. Only thing missing was a glass of chilled beer ! I enjoyed myself... hope it brings a smile to your face also.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Another attempt

          Some time back some one had told me that I will find portraits difficult to do. I have taken his words seriously and hence had made two in oils earlier. Wanted to do one in watercolors also. Was looking around for a subject and decided to trouble my Captain for a sitting. I am sure he was a bit apprehensive but agreed. The end result is in front of you. He was thrilled so I can presume it must be OK. 

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Wanna Dance ???

     Well..... this time I have no interesting tit bits and no story to tell. It is plain and simple, I found this picture of a ballet dancer, loved it and decided to paint it. Tell me what you think.
(Ref pic courtesy Eva Bajo Skladane)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Sunset @ Vizag

     There you are... the helicopter flies off to a new destination. I am currently in the port town of Vishakhapatnam or Vizag as it is popularly called.  This is a growing town with some (thankfully) clean beaches. After a hectic day's flying it is really great to go for long walks in the evening. The sunset on one of these walks was really lovely. Captured the scene on my camera and painted it in water colors in my room. This is what keeps me going. I enjoyed doing it, hope you also like it.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Jalebeeeeeee !

     The first month of the year and nothing to talk about. I am sorry but that is what happens when you are in a demanding profession. Anyway I have some more interesting tit-bits for you all.
     North India is famous for it's street food. Unfortunately most of the tourists shy away from it because of hygiene reasons. But let me assure you some of those avoidable looking stalls serve some real yummmmy delicacies. One of the dishes served at many places is a sweet called Jalebi. Though the earliest mention of this dish in Indian texts dates to 1450 AD but we are still not sure if we can lay a claim to its origins. A very similar dish is called Zulubiya in Iran, Zellabia in Lebanon and Z'labia in Tunisia. Any way, who ever wins, the final winner is this tasty dish called Jalebi. So next time you visit us do make it a point try it.
     I hope you love this painting of a street food vendor and also get to enjoy his Jalebis. Have a fantastic year ahead.