Rasipuram Krishnaswamy Iyer Laxman born 24 October 1921, Mysore, India) is an Indian cartoonist, illustrator, and humorist. He is widely regarded as India's greatest-ever cartoonist and is best known for his creation The Common Man. *
Birth and childhood
R. K. Laxman was born in Mysore, in a Tamil Iyer family. His father was a headmaster and Laxman was the youngest of six sons. One of his siblings is R.K. Narayan, English language novelist. Laxman was inspired by the illustrations in magazines such as Strand Magazine, Punch, Bystander, Wide World and Tit-Bits, even before he could read. Soon he was drawing on his own, on the floors, walls and doors of his house and doodling caricatures of his teachers at school; praised by a teacher for his drawing of a peepal leaf, he began to think of himself as an artist in the making. Another early influence on Laxman were the cartoons of the world-renowned British cartoonist, Sir David Low (whose signature he misread as "cow" for a long time) that appeared now and then in The Hindu. Laxman notes in his autobiography, The Tunnel of Time: “
| I drew objects that caught my eye outside the window of my room - the dry twigs, leaves and lizard-like creatures crawling about, the servant chopping firewood and, of course, and number of crows in various postures on the rooftops of the buildings opposite
| Laxman was the captain of his local "Rough and Tough and Jolly" cricket team and his antics inspired the stories "Dodu the money maker" and "The Regal Cricket Club" written by his brother, Narayan. Laxman's idyllic childhood was shaken for a while when his father suffered a paralytic stroke and died around a year later, but the elders at home bore most of the increased responsibility, while Laxman continued with his schooling. After high school, Laxman applied to the JJ School of Arts, Bombay hoping to concentrate on his lifelong interests of drawing and painting, but the dean of the...
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