Saturday, 30 July 2011

The Transform

osters are my passion.  I started my design carrier as a Lithographic artist, designing multicolour posters manually, directly on the Printing plates. In lithography you must write and draw on plate in reverse manner. This system existed till 1995 though this time west was fully transformed to automatic offset machines and even digital printing machines for short run orders were also launched. Since bigger lithoposters had an inevitable part in the life of Tamils and also in the making of  Tamilnadu Political heroes and silverscreen heroes, the Litho printing business was flourished like anything. If a press owner gets the opportunity to witness an assembly election or panchayat election, then no doubt, he could have earned the invested amount or double or thrice of it. So maximum waiting time for a Lithopress owner to prosperity is five years. Not anybody can start a lithopress at an ease. Apart from a big capital investment, one must have a good hold with politicians, and of course a contact with a manhandling group(which is common in Tamilnadu) to paint you as a real big man or employer. Besides this, important factor in this business is Lithographic artist. A day of operation of a lithopress starts with its artist taking over of his duty at his table. So press owners used to look forward the arrival of their artists for duty. Scarcity of good artists to write and draw reversely on the plate, noticed then.

An 1836 lithograph of Mexican women making tortillas by Carl Nebel.

This big demand of such artist paved me to get Rs 30,000/- as advance to join in a Litho press.  This amount was considered to be the fair one during early 1990s. May be that was the one among the hot jobs in private sector then, facilitating you with advance money from an employer. It would be a panic one for beginners to learn the job(people say). But I could learn it within 3 months and I was paid the high salary of that time(Rs.6000/-) and other benifits(free single room or house + overtime) in the industry. It took me only 3 years to achieve it. From 1995 offset machines replaced the former.  Here comes the direct writing and drawing on plates. But functions like paper feeding , delivery and collection etc needed human support. I continued the same field for few more years. Then the era of computers started and there seemed a decline in the graph of Lithographic artist. Ever since the designing was taken over by computers, I left the field and started practicing graphic application softwares and now surviving with  it's aid. Presently I have a nexus of dentists and general doctors as clients and helping them with image branding, stationery designing and executing printing too. Any how my past experience is rendering enormous power to my present work. Now I hope I am able to make a virtual layout and allocate the content in mind at the instance when I see a work matter. This may be the reason why I get desired output which make my clients happy.(...Contnd)