Q1: Tell us a bit about yourself
I’m a Computer Science graduate and a professional Graphics Designer from Karachi. I am affiliated with a digital marketing agency, ‘The D-spot’ and I make a living by freelancing. This is the serious part of my life. The fun part is the page I run through which I have got a little fan-following and have earned the respect of fellow talented artists and social media celebrities. Although my strength is Graphics Designing, I also have a tooth for making comics that make people smile but sometimes it back-fires.
Q2: What is your inspiration for the satirical cartoons that challenge social norms? How hard is it to think this way? Or does it come naturally to you?
My inspiration to make comics or one-liner illustrations was Kachee Goliyan. But the response I get from the people on my page is what keeps me going. Even if the comic doesn’t perform well, they appreciate the effort.
Criticism is more than welcome on my page. I guess I am the only Pakistani Facebook page admin who hasn’t banned anyone, though sometimes I do have to hide comments which are plain stupid. Criticism on comics is one thing but criticism on my designs or work I’ve done professionally rarely annoys me. This is because these so-called ‘critics’ haven’t even gotten their toes wet in the industry and are trying to get on my nerves thinking that stating a stupid thing will make me feel like I don’t know my stuff.
My comics are literally hated at times mainly because they lack humor, or are about topics that no-one wants to hear about, or a sad reality that people are not ready to hear about. The art to win hearts is a something that very few artists have, and Tayyab Tanvir and Shahzaib Hussain are few of those who have it. Also, art to make “designs that will blow your minds” is an art not that much appreciated by the Pakistani mass at the moment.
Q3: Since you run a highly successful page which reaches thousands of people, how do you feel towards haters?
There are so many breeds of ‘chewing-gums’ (I don’t call them haters cause haters hate and leave) on my page I cannot even list them. I’ve got:
1)Facebook Jihadis: Who call me a Kafir whenever I raise a religious issue that tries to unite sects.
2) Facebook Vultures: Who are nowhere to be found when I’m doing well but whenever I fall they will be there criticize me. This group also includes administrators of other pages too. One such admin who runs a page that copy pastes text from 9gag went like “HAHA what did you do, you made Bruce Wayne a bread-vendor” (ye kardia bhai bruce wayne ko naanwala bnadia) when I uploaded a photo-manipulation of a friend replaced with Bruce’s spot on a Gotham’s poster. The sad thing is that the admin found it easier to make fun of the effort but doesn’t have the skills or passion to do something apart from copy pasting 9gag memes and tweets on a hideously designed template.
3) Facebook Ninjas: who cover their face up by making fake Facebook IDs and then try to take my post down, one such case was when one of my post unintentionally resembled an image from Google and this fake ID commented “dekhli bhai aapki originality, shame on you” and my friend Shahzaib sharply replied “His work is more genuine than your Facebook profile.” (Burnol moment)
This being said, majority of the people on my page are awesome people and they back me up whenever I fumble. Piracy doesn’t actually bug me that much but some people have made it a habit which actually cuts out my reach and they feel so proud about it, in the meanwhile I’m just patiently waiting for my page to grow bigger. Pages like Just Pakistani Things and Sarcasmistan are constantly boosting me up from the start.
Q4: What is an artist’s role in a society? Is it overwhelming to have such a huge impact on the minds of people?
To be honest it isn’t really overwhelming , because this is temporary. My goal was to make a mark on the social media, to be someone that can blow your minds through my designs. Comics elevated my following and the designs got me respect, and 26 job offers. I had to reject all of them though because it was pretty obvious they will use my efforts and put their name tag on it and Moin Nazim will be nothing but an employee with a fixed salary. I’ve got bigger plans than that.
Yes I do feel responsible because it can hurt someone’s sentiments too. And I’ve apologized thrice for making comics that have accidentally upset people.
An artist’s role in the society is to inspire people forward, make them smile. Money is there to live another day.
The future is brighter than ever, not only for comics but for digital art too. People are looking forward to such comics now that can not only make them laugh but make them think too. This field is now evolving, along with the people of Pakistan.
Q6: Name your favorite cartoon/artist; you can name a favorite meme page of yours if you have one?
It wouldn’t be fair to name just one of them. I would definitely like to state an emerging artist because he at a young age is inspiring people, the unique thing is he is doing it by means of stunning digital paintings only – no silly humor or anything “commercial” and that is Aleem Shah (The No-Life Doodler). And one emerging comic artist would be Osama Noor (The Bizzare World of Osama Noor) who has a different taste for humor.
Q7: What is the one thing that Pakistan needs the most at this point in time or rather what do the people need? Any message for the youth?
Pakistan needs to stop talking and start doing, Pakistan is filled with people who say “Is se acha to main karsakta hun” but they wont pick themselves up. Get up, do something less talk more work.
I wouldn’t call myself a role model for the upcoming designers I’m not on that level yet, but the one thing you can learn from me is to keep your head down and keep on working on yourself till you get what you want.