I WRITE: ON GENDER, SEXUALITY, RIGHTS & SOCIOCULTURAL ISSUES; DO INTERVIEWS
I make the important interesting (or so I hope)!
Having topped my BA Honours in English with a specialisation in feminism from JMC, New Delhi, in 2004, I worked as an editor at Tulika, the Chennai-based children’s publishing house (2005), where I translated Deepa Balsavar's book The Seed into Hindi. In 2006, I started writing for Tehelka, DNA and Man’s World (monthly column and witty sex column Aunty Climax, 2006-7). I later joined the last as Contributing, then Assistant Editor. In 2007, at 24, I became the Launch Editor of BBC GoodHomes with WWM, a BBC-Times of India joint venture. (I was halfway through my Master's in English from Mumbai University then… and only found the time to resume it in 2014! I completed my degree with a focus on gender and post-colonial literature.)
Anyway, I moved on in 2011 and resumed writing on gender, sexuality, equal rights and sociocultural issues, alongside interviewing inspiring people, for renowned publications like Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, Good Housekeeping, Governance Now (fortnightly column, 2013-4), Women’s Health, DNA, Andpersand, The Sunday Guardian, iDiva, Republica, Mumbai Mirror and 3 Quarks Daily (monthly column, 2013-5). My writing has been widely syndicated, by publications like the Indian Express and Millennium Post.
My piece, 'Dance Mumbai Dance' for Governance Now won the Laadli Award for Best Feature (2013-4). I've co-created, alongside photographer Sahil Mane (my husband), the art-ivism project BeautyFull (2013-).
In 2016, I finally started working on Why Indian Men Rape, a multimedia gender journalism and activism project that I'd been thinking about for a few years.
I (USED TO) ART DIRECT: HIGH-DESIGN SETS
Until 2015, I used the skills I honed at GoodHomes in my alternate career as a freelance art director, doing print ads, TVCs and films, as well as conceptual shoots.
My USP was to make a setting look as beautiful and high-design as it could within a budget, great for décor and aspirational brands. I’ve done ad campaigns for eBay (short film), Horlicks, Fashion And You, Godrej Interio, Home Centre by Lifestyle, Bharat Floorings, Bhandari Builders, Burnol, Cocoon Fine Rugs, MTDC and Welspun, with reputed advertising and production companies like JWT, Fuel Films and Onions Creative. In 2012, I created a special décor supplement end-to-end for Outlook’s Christmas issue and, in January 2015, did production design for a children's film.
In 2013, I designed and constructed a one-of-a-kind versatile studio in Bengaluru, for Urban Ladder, an e-tailer of furniture to showcase its products in life-like settings. For two years, I also produced and art directed the iconic celebrity calendar (2014, 2015), pro bono, for World For All, an animal rescue organisation (2013-4).
I CONSULT: IN THE MEDIA & ARTS SPACES
I'm a multimedia lifestyle content specialist with diverse training and a varied career in the media.
It includes, alongside the things I've already mentioned, doing a course in book publishing at the National Book Trust (2007); and being a radio jockey with WorldSpace (2002-4); a judge on the seven-part reality TV show Design Warz on Zoom (2008); professor of writing/editing, magazines/web at the post grad diploma in mass media at MET, Mumbai (2008-); etc.
This has given me a holistic understanding of the Indian media and audiences, and, over the years, I have evolved in to a consultant, working independently, as a partner with i420 Digital Media heading the lifestyle division (2014-6), and collaboratively with Sahil, on mainstream, digital and alternative media and art projects. This includes handling native ad content for several properties of Times Internet (2015); co-creating the international award-winning art shows Orgasm! (2011), Arousal (2012) and BeautyFull; and being the Editorial & Style Consultant, Heaven & Home and Bamarang (2011-2).
In 2015, I was the Content Head (written and visual) for the swanky new mobile-first website of the Taj, one of the world's biggest luxury hotels chains.
2016 was an exciting year. Our super-successful agency, i420 was acquired (yay)! I was selected to be a part of Girl Effect and Swarm’s Open Studios—Mumbai Creative Sprint Workshop. I only took on a couple of commercial projects—providing branding and editorial guidance for Leeanne’s Kitchen and the supplements brand Setu—in order to focus on a long-term dream.
WHAT I'M DOING RIGHT NOW
Since 2013, but most actively since last year, I’ve been working on a project that’s close to my heart (and, dare I say, important). Why Indian Men Rape is a multimedia gender journalism and activism project spanning two books, a documentary and an active online presence over several years.
MORE! MORE! MORE!
I’d love to write a lot more opinion and conduct many more interviews for publications across the world. I am also working on a couple of longer-format gender and fiction works, alongside Why Indian Men Rape.
I’d love to collaborate on exciting mainstream and offbeat media and art projects, anywhere in the nebulous spaces where writing/design, branding/media strategy, activism/entertainment, photography/videography, online/offline, left brain/right brain converge.
I’d love to hear from you...
I’m the daughter of an Indian Naval officer, and have grown up all over the country. Sahil and I live and work out of our happy open homes with our four dogs, two cats in Mumbai and Goa, and have close ties to Australia.
We love friends, interesting conversations, entertaining, the arts, travelling, design, music, dancing, badminton, spinning poi, Scrabble, Catan, reading... and, generally, staying intensely inspired.
PS: Thank you, for spending your time here!