Using the Shivaji nagar market as a basic template Nandita Ratan has created a fictional market space called “Chanchanabad”. Chanchanabad has thereafter drawn from several markets that she has visited. The project, a collection of twenty page silent comics focuses on exploring this vast market area. It follows several characters within the market through short snippets from their day to day encounters. The comics primarily focus on the atmosphere of a market space and draw from her experiences of such spaces.
Nandita Ratan’s work focuses largely on illustration and public art. She has worked with a wide range of traditional media and is working towards inculcating a more digital approach into her process. She enjoys working with traditional media such as water colours, gouache and acrylics. She draws from existing spaces and experiences and translates them into her images to create fictional worlds and narratives.
Nandita found that exploring spaces by inhabiting it along with her sketchbook, taking notes and drawing details was the most integral part of her process. Not only did it allow her the time to understand the locality but also helped her open up conversation with individuals from Shivaji Nagar. Breaking down Shivaji Nagar’s market and working with recurring visual themes was an important part of the process. She was thoroughly overwhelmed by how diverse the Shivaji nagar market was. She found that exploring other markets through images and maps helped her understand and break down this diversity and represent it within her stories.