Photos: Retired bank clerk makes art on a typewriter in Mumbai

In Mumbai, 72-year-old Chandrakant Bhide, creates portraits of famous people, from politicians and film stars to cricketers, animation characters and religious symbols using the same Halda typewriter he used for the 30 years he worked at a bank. Bhide has produced around 150 pieces of typewriter art over the past half century. With 12 exhibitions to his name, having been featured in several Indian newspapers and even having shown his portraits to many of the stars he has typed out, Bhide has become a local celebrity since discovering his unique talent.

Updated On Sep 09, 2018 03:09 PM IST 6 Photos
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Clickety-clack, clickety-clack, ding rings out from a home in Mumbai where Chandrakant Bhide is creating his latest artwork depicting the Hindu god Ganesha --on a typewriter. The 72-year-old thumps the keys of the bulky, manual machine to draw portraits of famous people, from politicians and film stars to cricketers, animation characters and religious symbols. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Clickety-clack, clickety-clack, ding rings out from a home in Mumbai where Chandrakant Bhide is creating his latest artwork depicting the Hindu god Ganesha --on a typewriter. The 72-year-old thumps the keys of the bulky, manual machine to draw portraits of famous people, from politicians and film stars to cricketers, animation characters and religious symbols. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Updated on Sep 09, 2018 03:09 PM IST
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Bhide has produced around 150 pieces of typewriter art over the past half century. “I have done many personalities like Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Charlie Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy. This is my hobby, my passion,” he told AFP. Bhide has held 12 exhibitions of his work and become something of a local celebrity himself since discovering his unique talent. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Bhide has produced around 150 pieces of typewriter art over the past half century. “I have done many personalities like Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Charlie Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy. This is my hobby, my passion,” he told AFP. Bhide has held 12 exhibitions of his work and become something of a local celebrity himself since discovering his unique talent. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Updated on Sep 09, 2018 03:09 PM IST
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As a young man Bhide had wanted to go to art school and become a commercial artist but unable to afford the costs he trained in stenography instead. In 1967, while working in the administrative department of Union Bank of India, he typed a list of staff intercom numbers but in the form of a telephone. That’s when he thought of making art through this medium. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

As a young man Bhide had wanted to go to art school and become a commercial artist but unable to afford the costs he trained in stenography instead. In 1967, while working in the administrative department of Union Bank of India, he typed a list of staff intercom numbers but in the form of a telephone. That’s when he thought of making art through this medium. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Updated on Sep 09, 2018 03:09 PM IST
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Bhide started using the “x” key to produce images of Ganesha to mark the annual Ganesh Chaturthi festival. He then began experimenting with other keys --including “w”, dash, asterisk, ampersand and percentage sign-- progressing to create celebrity portraits. While he takes only 15 minutes to draw Ganesha, several hours are required to complete a famous face in what is a painstaking process. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Bhide started using the “x” key to produce images of Ganesha to mark the annual Ganesh Chaturthi festival. He then began experimenting with other keys --including “w”, dash, asterisk, ampersand and percentage sign-- progressing to create celebrity portraits. While he takes only 15 minutes to draw Ganesha, several hours are required to complete a famous face in what is a painstaking process. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Updated on Sep 09, 2018 03:09 PM IST
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With steely focus he uses his left hand to grip the knob that controls the platen --the roller that feeds the paper through-- as he taps the keys with his right index finger. Bhide said that typing requires dedication and concentration and if even one stroke is put in the wrong place, one needs to start all over again. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

With steely focus he uses his left hand to grip the knob that controls the platen --the roller that feeds the paper through-- as he taps the keys with his right index finger. Bhide said that typing requires dedication and concentration and if even one stroke is put in the wrong place, one needs to start all over again. (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Updated on Sep 09, 2018 03:09 PM IST
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Bhide, who doesn’t sell his artwork, has shown his portraits to many of the stars he has drawn. All of his works have been produced on the same Halda typewriter he used for 30 years at Union Bank and later received as a gift for one rupee when he retired. “I have got so many things out of this typewriter. Typing is an art.” (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Bhide, who doesn’t sell his artwork, has shown his portraits to many of the stars he has drawn. All of his works have been produced on the same Halda typewriter he used for 30 years at Union Bank and later received as a gift for one rupee when he retired. “I have got so many things out of this typewriter. Typing is an art.” (Indranil Mukherjee / AFP)

Updated on Sep 09, 2018 03:09 PM IST
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