#OpenKnowledgeSeries – Episode 5 (Vistara)

(You can download the file in the link below)

Note to young writers aspiring to survive this changing mediascape – Stop writing copy. No one reads copy. Think visual instead.

Note to all young art directors – Get your craft game up. In a world where any idiot can click a picture and make it pretty in less than 30secs on Instagram, ART is a valuable asset; but only if it reeks of your individuality.

Now coming to this circa June 2015 presentation deck, it is incomplete. At least in the form it is right now. Because i had to remove a lot of slides that had data, planning/creative tech ideas and interesting innovation of a reporting tool. But all that is the agency’s IP, which i cannot indulge in; so i wont. However, smart as those ideas were, they aren’t the most important missing part. It’s me. Or when i say me, I mean the presenter. For the creative bit of the pitch, it was me. And since you don’t have me physically sitting next to you, taking you through the romance we were trying to build, you don’t have the soul of this deck. It’s missing chemistry.

In other words, always make presentations which are incomplete without you. This will end the ‘mailing creative ideas to the clients’ bullshit; and creatives will have way more onus of what they do, what quality they produce; and an reason for the client to have trust on you. Also, rehearse your presentation. Don’t read from the slides during. It’s showmanship, and you are the star performer. Stop dialing it in, dial it up.

Finally, a word of advice to the new breed of planners & servicing folks – Stop using too many words in your decks, stop giving the client data unless the client has asked for data. Stop telling the client what they already know, stop explaining their own brands, demographics, industry cliches to them. Get in, do your job, get out; don’t take unnecessary time with 100+ sliders, when the job can be done in 10. Everyone likes efficient people at work. Everyone wants to be friends with them for personal benefit. Be that. Be smarter than your client, you are getting paid to be so.

Anyhoo, back to this deck. The idea is Uncommute* with the asterisk replaced with the brand logo. The idea was to bring back the joy of flying. Which seems to be missing from the stuffy, commuter laden travel option that we now associate it with. It was about making people believe that Vistara was a different approach, a younger better version of the good old past. And it had to show in the brand’s approach to communication & design. It had to be a freeing experience, and not a chore.

The client liked it, a lot. But i think the money men disagreed on a cost to idea. We didn’t get signed on at the end. It was a bummer. However, this was born.

Hope it helps! 🙂

Screen Shot 2018-05-06 at 6.56.04 PM

Vistara_Uncommute copy

Agency – IBS Unified
Planning – Manish Thanvi
Copy – Rasesh Patkar, Shivani Gairola
Art – Anish Sundaran, Rahul Singh, Shruti Thakkar


Flutter dear mind
Flutter and fly
Like effervescence
From the rapidly narrowing streamMutter
Mutter all you want
Mutter insanity
In my ears, on my face
From a slow fading dream

Walk about
Walk near as much u can
Find the highest u can fall
From what depths your fears scream

Exhale louder
Exhale the poison fruit
Sticky roads stick ur wings
From here to gather steam

Burn out
Burn them demons out
Let those ashes become your coat
From one to the other extreme.


Some strokes from life

Okay, before you people judge me, please note that your’s truly is a person of words, a writer by profession, and has never gone through any art training in his life. So apologies to the hurting eyes of the ones with evolved tastes and likings.
But just like singing, and tapping of feet, drawing come naturally to all of us. The good, bad or ugliness is of course individual.
So here are few of my afternoons and evening of nothingness, but an art pad and HB lead graphite pencil 🙂

Awkward. And uneasy…

Uneasy thoughts crawl through my spine
Let it go, let it be
I say, I scream
Unscathed it moves back and forth

Dark as death
Blue as the unhealed wound
The uninvited makes way into the mind
Liberated, uninhibited it walks naked

Marking territory, it’s marking its territory
All over my dead face
As a single song plays deadpan in the head
Laughs pointing its dirty fingers at me

Reminders of the past days
Baggage of the future
Suffocate the present
As it all passes by slowly

Hovering around the corner is a known face
Leering behind it are the known mistakes
The moment when life gets busy giving others a fuck
Silence fills in the room with the stench of awkward truths

Make it your scent
Wear it wherever you go
Let people know
Where you have been and where you will go

Seeking solace in meaningless words
Fighting uneasy urges
Making way through the crowded alleys
My face in awkward strangers

Of keeping quiet, and talking aloud!

How many times do you keep quiet and bear it? How many times do you curse yourself while walking out of a lost battle of wits, between you and someone you didn’t want to win against? How many times have you dreamt of going back to that same moment and shouting abuse, hurling insults that you think would help you show that person his or her right spot? You have haven’t you? And you just lived through that shame again, like you do sometimes when embarrassing moments come flushing into your mind unaware. You shrug it off, flinch in the pain of it all. That moment that you worked so hard to justify, to forget, to bury. It never works, does it?

I have been through a lot of those, and still do on an alternate basis. I flinch, scream in my head, grit my teeth and tighten my fists. But why do I not say what I want to say? Why do we not say what we think we should? Why do we live through humiliation and insults? What do we hold on to? Our dignity? But isn’t that’s what lying naked, raped brutally? You can see it through the corner of your eyes, cant you? You can hear its silent whimper late in the night, right when the silence tries to bore holes into your eardrums, isn’t it? Harder you try, the louder it howls. Faster you close your eyes, the sooner it appears in your nightmares.

If there was a screen that showed all that goes on in our heads, I believe it won’t be sex. It would be graphic scenes of souls being molested, egos being impaled and minds being sedated. It would be the white noise of helplessness. It would hardly ever be sex.

Have you ever realized that the more we tend to keep quiet on the outside, the more louder we get inside our heads. Bow down, bend over, take your pants off. Scream, scream louder, scream till the last ligament in your throat is hanging by that nerve end. Newton’s law, I presume, fits in here.

There is a huge deception here. We deceive ourselves that is. This comes into play when our coward mind is done playing all its cards. When our fear for what we have starts to wither. When we start questioning the very things that we take all the shit for. This is when our mind shows us a mirage. The picture of a cliff, and you heading towards it, at top speed. It gives you references from all the fiction you have ever seen or read, of all the fairy tales you have not believed in. It tells you that you are fast approaching the end, and that you will topple over. It plays in your head a huge bang, a brilliant white flash that you will be. And how everyone else will be at awe of it. Your mind tells yourself to endure it because there is nothing else for you to lose, and whatever that is pushing you towards that cliff will soon get it from you big time. You will have you revenge, you will have your say, you will have your moment of glory under the sun that is bright than the brightest star in the realm of brightness. Your mind will tell you to hold on just a moment more. It tells you that you will soon have that life-altering, chains-shattering moment. And after that, all this pain will end, all this suffering will stop, all this screaming will be silent. You will be free again. You will have life your way. By the reins, moving fast, breathing easy.

But that cliff never approaches. It always stays at touching distance. You move fast, you move slow, but that tip of the mountain, that end of the line remains as elusive and tempting as it was the first day you thought you had this realization. Slowly, the screams come back, it starts hurting again, and you keep silent. Like you always have, and always will be. There is no escape.