Working in a Nutshell | | Edit #2 | Many Many Things for ExpostFacto | Style Files

Its been a bit busy and then it was April!!! I don’t think I saw January this time or February or for that matter even March! – we definitely landed straight to April. #nokidding. (is it global warming??) ……………. And then May is the birthday month, I had to had to had to go for a vacation that I promised myself years ago. So well….. its just been a bit delayed….(hiding my face now) 

Excuses No More! (socks all pulled up and me….armoured! )


Space – 590 Sq feet – Working in a Nutshell | Edit #2

|manymanythings for ExpostFacto| 2015, the year when we were on an experimental mode and Piyush Raghani (Director and Founder of the production house ‘Like Minded People‘- from our first collaboration)  wanted another space – not another office but an Edit Studio for colour grading and offline editing of films and other broadcasted media. A studio space – “yeahhhh!” was our first reaction, but  with all its thrill came many challenges and technicalities. Of the many, one confrontation was to be with the acoustics of the place, to cut down sound travel from one room to the other and doing so without bulky construction. The other, how-do-you-do was keeping the already small space dark and killing any external source of light for the very purpose of a studio room is to disengage. Now, we love windows and all sunlight but sometimes you-have-to-do-what-you-have-to-do and so we were to turn everything to our advantage rather brood about it! 

#Didyouknow there are soundproofing wallpapers available now in India and blackout textiles can turn any room into a personal theatre? (Scroll away….)

Look and Mood: The Pursuit of Pixels and Exposing Glitches. 

It was to be bare, minimum, yet kinetic. The idea has been to use natural textures and keep the space raw yet connect it with a notion of movement – through graphics that break out, electrical pipes running onto a smokey ceiling, using lights on tracks and keeping furniture on wheels – everything to best the design and the pocket. Materials used therefore were brick for the walls, asbestos sheets for all cement finishes, metal for cabinets and accents, teak and walnut wood for furniture and finishes of paint – smokey not smooth.  

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Right: A matt polished charcoal grey door with a long brass handle coated part black sourced from Hesperus greets one inside. We see the two edit rooms in sound proof glass cabins, the doors to both parallel to each other; Spider handing lamp with moving arms and adjustable heads lights up and highlights the centre, bought from Anemos. Left: Waiting area with metal benches has a special mechanism where the back of the bench becomes its table; Capsule lights sourced from ChorBazaar soft spots this area and our metal overhead cabinets camouflage all the massive electrical wiring and other machines that support the heavy electrical and functioning of the studio.     


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Signage: Neon tubes of ‘ExpostFacto’ cased inside open metal cut alphabets made by a local shop board manufacturing unit and overlaid with an acrylic sheet for protection against ‘those who touch’!; Seating: Mid century inspired cushioned chairs upholstered in leatherette from ddecor and mid-high stools upholstered with our 8-bit illustrated space characters digitally printed on cotton satin fabric (order in!); Space: We are looking at the door that leads to the colour grading room.


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Right Top: The logo for ‘Expostfacto’ designed by Roshnee Desai comes to life on our distressed brick wall; Right bottom: Letter Box or rather a shadow box, lazer cut on metal – you see the logo cast on the wall through the different lights of the day; Left: Staircase signage is the ‘X’ from eXpostfacto in formation, designed by Avinash Jai Singh, metal lazer cut pasted on acrylic and fixed one inch away from wall.


The brand identity helped us in structuring the mood, pallet and ideas further. While Roshnee had the required brand language already in place inspired by the timeline grids of various audio and video softwares post production houses work with, Avinash turned the same to his own symphony that broke out and stitched together graphic glitches in one space.

We wanted to block the glass cabins and not block them completely – this space needed to breathe and it was the glitch art set in motion that eased the rather small area just absolutely as intended.  The plotter cut black vinyl on the partitions pasted on eye levels and beyond aid your eyes to travel along and explore the space on its own.


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Glitch Art by Avinash Jai Singh – Glitches that we have flaunted away on the sound proofed glass cabins. All the windows have blackout blinds restricting sunlight but hey! we always encourage to get the vital vitamin ‘D’ when the room’s not in use or when the crew takes a bit of a break.


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More of the glass graphics pasted on eye level and beyond to shield any distractions inside-out,  giving all space to breathe. Both rooms have rolled up blinds on their glass sides too for further blackout of the room. 


The two rooms – color grading and the offline edit have had their own special needs – Color Grading required absolute blackout and offline needed minimum sound travel. Now we have used blackout fabrics and blinds many a times for we have always felt that there needs to be an option for sunlight to sweep in when needed instead of a permanent block. What we were hunting for was the least voluminous sound proofing solution. Defurn tempted us with a wide range of well designed acoustic panels but our little space couldn’t support the costs of importing the same. We also couldn’t afford to loose the 2″-3″ depth taken off the walls that the panels would take and the fixed sizes they came in. Bummer!! They looked too cool. We had to find a friendlier option and we did hit a jackpot – Ego Wall Decor introduced us to a range of acoustic wallpapers!!!! Can you believe that!! Takes no space, easy to clean and comes in all possible textures and colors!!! Bingo!!!!


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Offline Edit Room: Cement textured wallpaper from Egowalldecor adorns the walls of the room only broken by our pixelating storage cabinets and open shelving. 


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Color grading room that needs an absolute blackout when the artist is at work; Channeled spotlights accurately directed to work with easy accessibility to its switches mounted under the desk top; The perforated metal cabinet for storage that can also be used as a magnet board, magnets bought from Tappu Ki Dukaan; Office chairs from Defurn to best suit the ergonomics of the artist seated for several hours.

One way we turned glitch and geometrics of the editing softwares to our advantage, on the other we persuaded pixels in the design story of the furniture, fabrics and walls. Our space cadet Diti Mistry (my little intern) helped with the illustrations on this story working on 8-bit colour graphics – creating our own character play to break the mundane of the space. These were further hand painted to appear from the electrical wiring pipes, furniture and walls and play pop to the entire design. We have used neutrals all over to support and not distract but this burst of selected pastels pallet was a much needed one.

My most favourite are the poufs on wheels from this same 8-bit illustrations story upholstered in digitally printed cotton satin. ‘Boo’ says one head and the other is a splitter splatter in space. The same prints have been also used to upholster the mid-high chairs placed in the open office side near the window and suspended table top.


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Right Top: Running man with dog running alongside electrical wiring; Left: Light burst off a light supply; Right bottom: Our first mark on the walls of the studio for ExpostFacto


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Left: Yellow head with glasses; Right: Orange head says ‘Hi’ both characters from our 8-bit story hand-painted on wall by JJ artist Jai Singh 


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Play on wheels: Our own 8-bit world illustrated by Diti Mistry digitally printed on cotton satin and upholstered in our workshop (Order In!)

I will be honest, it was a field day everyday and we have had fallouts but everything did come up as planned and we learned something new at every little step. Studio is located at the heart of Bandra just above Smoke House Deli offering the best of coffees and cookies and breakfasts and luncheons and tea and sometimes packed dinners – we had very long days and even longer evenings and they became our very generous companions – Thank you much 🙂

Another set of people that we need to specially mention are Namdevji working under the guidance of Mithun D’suza who helped us with all the massive electrical’s and were particularly patient in explaining the details, weight and colour coding of all wiring and machinery.

And at the end we did have happy clients and happy clients of clients working in the studios. Soooo – Yeah!!!! – We got sHiT done!!

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Top and Bottom Left: Suspended table top just enough to keep your laptop and be cosy with a cup of coffee and be seated on our high chairs upholstered with the 8-bit story characters. Right: Pantry trolley with red textured glass tops resting under the exposed ‘X’ of eXpostfacto.


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The very special brass and iron ash tray toy made dismantling and assembling various machine parts of an ice crusher. Odd thoughts for simple joys.

*All photographs by Kunal Bhatia from Studio Kunal Bhatia

*Product Sources: Hesperus, Anemos, D’decor, DefurnEgo Wall Decor, Chor Bazaar, Tappu ki Dukaan,

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