Rohan Chakravarty is an excellent cartoonist

By Abhijit Menon-Sen <>

When I wrote a page about myself as a birding guide, I asked a number of people for feedback. More than one person suggested that the page would benefit from a photograph (or three) of myself, perhaps with clients. Although I agreed in principle, I couldn't bring myself to do anything about it—adding a mugshot sounded so boring.

I liked Hassath's idea of using a cartoon much better, but even though I could imagine a few suitable cartoons, I had—as usual—no idea how to put them down on paper. So I did nothing, and the weeks passed by.

The other day, I happened to see Rohan Chakravarty's bird cartoons on the KolkataBirds web site. The style wasn't exactly what I had in mind for my own web page, but I liked the illustration, especially the birds' expressions. I knew Rohan in passing from the delhibird mailing list, and I decided to ask him if he would be interested. He was.

I explained the style I wanted: black-and-white to fit the fairly sober mood of the page, more lines than solid areas; something very much like the New Yorker cartoons. Rohan and I discussed a few ideas, and quickly settled on a concept for one wide panel and one square panel, and an approximate price. I told him I was in no particular hurry, and swapped the subject out of my mind.

To my surprise, however, Rohan completed the assignment in no time at all, and the cartoons he sent me the next day were brilliant. I had not expected the first draft to match what was in my head, let alone improve on it, but it did; and I was able to use his illustrations without any changes on my web page, where they look great even a week later.

Rohan's blog is at Should anyone I know need the services of a freelance illustrator and cartoonist, I know whom to recommend now.