It All Started With A Bang!
The Big Bang was the start of everything. In time, it led to the formation of the universe approximately 13.75 billion years ago. Planet Earth, a world for all, a hub of diversity, came into being 4.5 billion years ago. For the next few million years that followed, it was nothing but a mass of rocks kept together by the force of gravity. Sometime around 3.7 billion years ago, life sprung up on the surface of the Earth, and the journey to the present day began.
On Earth, the force that binds everything – from mountains to oceans to plants to animals to us – in perfect harmony, is nature. It is a thread connecting all life forms, all the ecosystems on Earth in a stable circular network which share a give and take relationship. Everywhere on Earth, the environment is diverse. There are deserts with sand and extremely hot climate, mountains and valleys with rocky-rough terrain, and oceans with huge amounts of water, and accordingly, they are all inhabited by different species of plants and animals.
Man Vs Nature
Things seemed to be going good until human greed took over and there was no room left for anything else.
We, the present-day human beings, have evolved from necessity-driven, contented primates into a rapidly expanding community of self-centred individuals. As a consequence of this, year after year, more and more species are falling under the radar of extinction.
At the same time, the human population is proliferating by exploiting nature for more. We have pushed out animals and cut down trees to build luxurious homes and huge malls. We have dumped the toxic waste from our factories into the ocean. We have killed animals, extracted everything possible, and scarcely given anything in return.
In 2004, IUCN gave us a reality check with its major assessment of the world’s biodiversity
which calculated that the rate of extinction had reached 100-1,000 times that suggested by the fossil records before humans. In short, we have overexploited the resources available in nature to such an extent that the rate of extinction has become faster than the rate at which species evolve.
A Unique Step
Most of us might have turned a blind eye towards this critical issue but there are some who still feel responsible and are doing their bit to address the problem.
One such person who brings the idea into his work is Rohan Chakravarthy. He is a freelance wildlife artist by profession and the man behind Green Humour, a series of cartoons that come with a twist of humour in the backdrop of nature and wildlife. His Green Humor cartoons have been featured in Sanctuary Asia, GQ India, and National Geographic Traveller among many others. He has also published a few books to spread awareness on wildlife among children.
In 2019, we connected with Rohan and invited him to chat with us. The conversation was mainly focussed on conservation communication, fake news, and the challenges faced in wildlife conservation. Rohan was more than happy to share his life story of becoming a cartoonist and how he goes about doing an exceptional job at work. He also answered questions from his fans and how he works as a freelance wildlife artist.
A few questions that you may find discussed during the episode: Why did Rohan choose wildlife as the theme for his cartoons? How can one find authentic information on nature and wildlife? What was the reason behind coming up with a book? How does Rohan go about making a cartoon? What are the tools used by Rohan?
There is an artist in all of us but for some, it’s a lifelong passion. For those of you who share the same passion as Rohan, becoming an illustrator would definitely be an option to consider. Listen to the full conversation on
- The secret of how life on Earth began(2016, Oct 31), BBC
- UN Report: Nature’s Dangerous Decline ‘Unprecedented’; Species Extinction Rate ‘Accelerating’(2019, May 6), Sustainable Development Goals
- Humans driving extinction faster than species can evolve, say experts(2010, Mar 7), The Guardian
- Global Health Observatory data – Life Expectancy, WHO