“I was 22 when I earned name and in fame in the world of cartoons,” says 57-year-old Shriniwas Prabhudesai, who has spent all these years caricaturing the likes of Amitabh Bachchan, Dharmendra and Saif Ali Khan.
In 2003, Lafarge, the French cement company, had employed him to make caricatures of the 30 personalities who were part of their product launch event.
How I got into it
I joined JJ School of Arts in 1967. I also took up a part-time job as an artist in a studio at Fountain. The same year, my first cartoon was published in Basant magazine. Later, I joined Hindustan Thomson Advertising as an illustrator. I have even featured on shows like Kil Bil and Khel Khilona on Doordarshan in 1980.
My first time
The Bombay Store at Fountain hired me to do caricatures for their customers during Christmas. My first customer was a 65-year-old builder, Anand. He liked his caricature so much that he ordered four more. I earned Rs 100 for a caricature.
How does it feel to be different?
I am spreading happiness and doing a noble job. People can’t believe I can do a caricature in 5-10 minutes. Recently, at a mall, a lady who was watching me said I must be using chemicals or some magical paper to finish so fast. She wouldn’t believe I could work with normal paper and paints.
What I love about my job
I get to meet people with different characters. During my 39-year-old career I have met so many people from across the world and that keeps me going.
The most difficult thing
It is very necessary to understand the person’s expressions and feeling. If the subject is not cooperative, I find it difficult to do a good job.
My family says
Everyone in my family is doing something different. My wife is a copywriter and my daughter is a singer. My wife is always with me at my work place and she is the one who communicates with customers. Behind every successful man there is a woman and for me it is my wife.