About Author

A good-hearted old Sardarji taxi driver expedited Shyam Bhatya’s entry into this world, rushing him to hospital,  at a time when Sardarji taxi drivers were ubiquitous on the Kolkata street scene. Schooled in the Himalayan mountains as a boarder for eight years, Shyam Bhatya did his graduation with English Literature from Kolkata, before easing himself into a career he thought he was cut out for, but later discovered to be myopic, to say the least.

A decade on and off in Advertising as a copywriter and artist urged Shyam to move on in life. In the late eighties, he migrated to the United States, and soon found work as a Copy Editor with an international textbook publishing company. Five years later, bullied by economic happenstance, he switched to selling Insurance and Real Estate, which again was interspersed with a short stint as a financial writer. The bug that bit him then in college has again resurfaced, evidence this blog, which is like a clothesline with essays, commentary, poems, illustration, and occasional cartoons hung out to dry.

Shyam Bhatya is a free-wheeling artist and writer domiciled as they insist in saying “in the land of the free, home of the brave.” He considers himself an aspiring gentleman, one-time wicket keeper, a tree hugger, and butterfly chaser in his spare time. A final note for visitors: Feedback and comments regarding contents posted on this blog are always welcome. Nothing stirs the idle mind like wayward thought and sub-divided attention.

4 responses to “About Author

  1. Surely one of the best Abouts ever crafted by a free-wheeling blogger! The idle mind of this reader was very pleasantly stirred… : )

    • Thanks Mark, for the delightful comments. I wonder if you’d tried your hand at single-panel cartoons, with or without captions (which you’d probably be very good at, if you tried), like the ones you see in The New Yorker, etc. Talking about TNY, not all their cartoons are great. However, their illustrations are always excellent. Punch magazine, UK (now defunct) is where you could see the best cartoon illustrations many years ago. You probably have seen some of their work, especially that of Quentin Blake, Ronald Searle, Michael Ffolkes, Handlesman, Larry, Thelwell, Edward McLachlan to name just a few of the many greats (including Charles Barsotti from across the pond).

  2. I actually started out as a magazine gag cartoonist, before migrating over to illustration. I did hundreds of B&W cartoons on speculation. Never came close to getting in The New Yorker, but did manage to crack many of the second tier markets: Better Homes & Gardens, TV Guide, Golf Digest, etc. I really regret the demise of the “general” cartoon (New Yorker toons treat mixed subjects, but they have a very unique vibe that puts them in separate category, I think).

    And I felt awful when Punch went under. Just thinking about it is painful. I loved their stuff, and I’m quick to grab any Punch collection that I find at used bookstores. Those cartoonists you named are all heroes of mine; they cranked out some truly inspired lunacy.

    Many thanks for your cheerful reply!

    • Would love to see some of the gag cartoons you did for magazines back then, published or unpublished. Trust you’ve saved and archived them somewhere. Nice to know you share my love for some of the Punch “greats.” Speculative work can get quite tiring because of the uncertainty, involved so hope the switch is paying off. Good luck, as always!

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