Just like it says on his website, Karthik M is a guy who loves to make things, who lives with his musical better half, and who sincerely believes that one day both his feline sons will start talking to him. He loves doing side projects, just like Ji Lee and SwissMiss. He’s the author of @mysmallstories on Twitter. He keeps a thick beard to hide his double chin, and will often scratch it while pretending to think. He finds it very, very difficult to write about himself, be it in the third person, or out of that person.
Why are you into Advertising?
Because it lets me revel in my misfit-ness, and pays me for it too.
Did you attend school for fine art or design or Communications?
Yes. R. A. Podar College of Commerce and Economics.
You are an illustrator, graphic designer and copywriter. Which of these best describes you.
None. An unromantic, absent-minded husband. That sure does.
Were there any particular role models for you when you grew up?
N.A. (Not grown up yet.)
Who was the most influential personality on your career in Advertising? In Illustration and Design?
Where do you get your inspiration from?
From everyday life, and my very tolerant wife.
Tell us something about the work environment at your agency Catalyst SMC.
Leg-pulling 30%, Laughter 30%, Talks on Food 20%, Eating 10%, Alcohol sessions 5%, Abuses 5%.
What do you think of the state of Print advertising right now. At least here in India, the released work is most often too sad?
It could be so much better. Right now, it’s a clear case of too many cooks spoil the broth. Everybody wants to have their say in it. “Hey! It’s just advertising. Even I know a thing or two.” seems to be their thought process. And you can’t argue with that. The result? Well, we all know what that is. But I admire Taproot’s approach. They do really good ads, and most of them are released work. So hats off to them, especially the person who sells it, and the client who buys it.
Do you think brands who’s advertising wins awards, do well in the market?
Well, there cannot be so many scam ads year after year, right? There are clients out there who are brave enough to put that work out into the market, and also intelligent enough to check whether they are working or not. So I’d love to think
that yes, they do work well in the market. And I also think that “Make a great product, and you won’t
have to worry about advertising”.
What advice do you have for aspiring creative professionals?
To all aspiring creative professionals (which includes me too), I’d suggest: Learn, unlearn and relearn.
Who would you like to take out for dinner?
My wife. She’s had way too many takeouts with me.
What’s on your iPod?
iPad chalega? Some Coke Studio, Dewarists, The Shruti Box and Bollywood.
Mac or PC?
Hey, thanks! Mac. Which model are you giving? Is it the new iMac?