Friday, 24 January 2020

Lunar New Year in a multi-cultural land

Recent travels between the multi-cultural island of Singapore to the multi-cultural island of Penang with Chinese and Tamil Hindu populations living together, led me to this idea.
Celebrating the Lunar New Year of the Rat in 2020.

Sunday, 22 September 2019

Biker mutts

My Bath University classmate posted this on Facebook. I couldn't resist drawing a cartoon for it.
Then I did a minor variation.

Sunday, 19 May 2019


Compassion is something that we expect from others. It may not be that we are always ready or able or willing to give compassion to others.

These days there is a lot of talk about "passion"'. An attitude towards work, or a profession or an art or a sport. She is passionate about athletics. He is passionate about music. All well and good to have passion.Now what about some compassion?

I bought some new pens today and today being Vesak, I felt that Siddhartha> Gauthama> Buddha would be an appropriate subject, as he is relevant today as he ever was.

Sunday, 24 February 2019

Yakada Yakka- The Iron Devil

In Sri Lanka, the railway or locomotive was called "yakada yakka". Yakada means iron or steel in Sinhalese language and yakka means demon or devil. For Sri Lankans used to the peaceful bullock cart, the introduction of these steam locomotives by the British was a bit of a culture shock at first. But later as Sri Lankans grew to love the iron devil trains (as they do today) the name took on a more affectionate tone. Also yakada yakka when repeated fast out loud sounds a lot like the sound trains make when travelling over the rail joints. (Try it yourself!)

This drawing was inspired by a logo designed by Gehan Chandika for the Facebook Sri Lankan railfan group calling themselves Yakada Yaka. His logo is based on the Class M2 diesel-electric locomotives built in Canada by Electro Motive Division (EMD) of General Motors. These locos entered service in the late 1950s and most of them are still in daily service today despite some being affected by civil war and tsunami. Gehan's logo inspired me to look towards the iconic devil dance masks of Sri Lanka. The drawing above is a fusion of all these elements.

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

The Magic Cycle Wheel

A common sight in the Jaffna (Sri Lanka) of my childhood. The land is flat and bicycles were a common means of transport for many. So plenty of old and discarded cycle wheel rims were available.
Hence the formula for Fun = Cycle wheel rim + Stick + Imagination.
In the mind of a child, the cycle wheel became a vehicle to "drive"/fly.  It could be any vehicle depending on what mood and what the latest craze is. The quiet cadjan fenced lanes were the settings of these adventures.

Saturday, 17 February 2018

The Elephant Sri Lankans

No, the heading is not a typo error. Sri Lankan Elephants share the small island with Sri Lankan Humans.... sometimes with tragic consequences for both. On the whole, Sri Lankans love the elephant. The elephant is often found in the local news (both print and video/TV) as well in graphics, advertising, logos and symbols. A major political party and a major food and drinks manufacturer both use the elephant as their symbol.

So instead of thinking of elephants as being separate, what if they were considered as Elephant Sri Lankans, just like Sinhalese Sri Lankans, Tamil Sri Lankans, Muslim Sri Lankans, Burgher Sri Lankans, Expatriate Sri Lankans etc? As a cartoonist, I've let my imagination run wild and sketched some of these Elephant Sri Lankans in their daily lives- just like human Sri Lankans...