Sanjay Ashtaputre Ji first of all, I would like to thank you for taking time out from your schedule to have this conversation with CulturePOPcorn. So sir, as we all know you worked in Golden Edge of Indian comics industry, please share when did this colorful journey began?
Dear Mr Kishan Harchandani, thank you so much. Happy Going my down memory lane and as a illustrator sharing golden era of comic book world. As you said that was really golden age. it all started in 1986, when senior comic illustrator Shri Pratap Mullick came to hyderabad on some comic book / film project, जब मै और मेरी पत्नी दया, (मेरी पत्नी भी उत्कृष्ट चित्रकार है) हैदराबाद में एक design studio चलाते थे, इत्तेफाक से मुलिक सर से मुलाकात हो गई, फिर दोस्ती हो गयी, he was here in hyderabad for 3 years, he saw my work, those days, i used to do illustrations for all advertising agency’s in hyderabad.
Sanjay Ashtaputre Ji, You draw initial issues of Nagraj and you also work for other publication like Tulsi Comics, Manoj Comics, share some of your experience?
Pratap Mullick Sir suggested me to illustrate comic books on regular basis, he was doing penciling of Nagraj Ki Kabr, 2nd book of Nagraj series, he was so generous to give me inking and rest of the work of this book and suggested my name to Raja and Manoj pocket books, I am very much thankful to Pratap Mullick Sir. This is how me n my wife became comic book artist और अगले 10 साल तक ये हमारी रोजी/ रोटी का जरिया बन गया…( मुझे खेद के साथ यहाँ ये भी कहना पड़ रहा है की, 1994 में मैंने एक कॉमिक चित्रित करके भेज दी थी, जिसका चेक bounce हुवा था, और चेक के पैसे, कई रिमाइंडर के बावजूद अबतक प्राप्त नहीं हुए,,😢publisher का नाम यहाँ देना मै उचित नहीं समझता)
You work with all major publications then you switch your career. What was the reasons?
हमने 9-10 साल में राज, मनोज और तुलसी पॉकेट बुक के लिए करीब 75 कॉमिक बुक चित्रित किये, मै penciling तथा inking करता था, और मेरी पत्नी दया lettering व कलरिंग करती थी, इसी के साथ हमारा advertising business भी चलता था, सबेरे 4 बजे उठकर मै कॉमिक चित्रांकन करता था, मेरा पहले से क्रिएटिव पेंटिंग के तरफ झुकाव था, और उसी मे अपना एक नाम/स्थान निर्माण करने प्रयत्न रहा, बच्चों की तथा advertising bussines की जिम्मेवारी के कारन कॉमिक चित्रांकन का काम थामना पड़ा.
Sanjay Ashtaputre Ji, tell us something about your personal life journey?
My big son Sarang was very much interested in reading all type of comic books, (unfortunately he is no more now, but I still remember his madness towards comic book) after passing away of my Son, I was totally shattered, I close down my studio, and slowly pick up interest in painting and music/ last 20 yrs i am learning n playing Sitar,found solace in this two divine art.
Comic background helped me lot in drawing,composition and color scheme in creating canvas painting. I create paintings, exhibit it all metro cities of india and abroad. I spend my time with music n paintings.. you can google my name and see my works on net. Or visit my website Sanjay Ashtaputre
My second son Gunjan is also an artist, was working with bobbleapp.com in delhi, now with some other creative company in Delhi.
Do you have any advise for the current crop of aspiring artists and writers in India?
My request to comic book publisher, please produce humorous/ entertaining books not horror / horrifying books.
Where do you see the Indian comics industry in the next 10 years?
I sure there is a great future for comic world, there are so many good artist taking interest and bringing out good quality of comic books. Taking help of computer and technology, there are so many things are available on their finger tips.
What is your advice to CulturePOPcorn?
CulturePOPcorn is doing great job, I wish them very bright future and thankful for giving me this opportunity to express myself.
What message do Sanjay Ashtaputre have for fans?
I feel so happy when I see my 30 years back fans still remember me and they all are now reconnected with me through Facebook..feel happy by reading their comments on facebook post. So many wants me to restart comics again😊😊. I am so proud of you guys, we will be connected forever, for me you all are my children.
…thank you so much.