Cover Story

Tiny wonders

July 14 - July 20, 2021
Gulf Weekly Tiny wonders
Gulf Weekly Tiny wonders
Gulf Weekly Tiny wonders

AN EXPATRIATE artist who created a miniature of Bahrain’s red transport bus has amazed many, including the authorities. 

Restrictions to curb the spread of Covid-19, which hit many lives unexpectedly, proved to be a blessing for Bahrain resident Sajeesh M T, who discovered his hidden talent during this time.

Inspired by a piece of art done by a child, the 39-year-old car air-conditioning technician created a remote-controlled mini red bus using thick foam boards.

To his surprise, residents lapped up the little red vehicle and even placed orders for more.

Since then, there has been no looking back.

Sajeesh has been using the earnings from the sale of his craft to support students back home in Kerala who are in need of equipment for their online schooling.

“I purchased two televisions and two smartphones for students in my home town who could not afford these for their online classes,” said Sajeesh, who hails from Pandalam and has been in Bahrain for 18 years in Salmabad.

His red masterpiece, which resembles the kingdom’s bus down to its minutest details, impressed the Bahrain Public Transport Company so much so that they not only honoured him, but also placed orders for the remote-controlled miniatures.

“They wanted it as gifts or mementos to be distributed,” he said.

“I also got orders from people who wanted to keep it as a show piece. I used foam sheets to make the structure, the wheel and the seats. I went on the bus to observe it closely so that I could recreate it accurately. The only thing I purchased is the red paint and remote used for toys, to make the bus mobile.”

Sajeesh takes almost two weeks to make one 54cm x 13cm mini red bus, based on orders and it’s priced at BD30 each.

The bus is just one of Sajeesh’s artistic discoveries during the pandemic as he subsequently took to bottle and leaf art too.

“One of my friends came back from a birthday party with a bottle art done by a child and it inspired me,” he said.

“At that time, workshops were closed and we had no jobs. I realised that I could create many items using things that are harmful to the environment like plastic bottles. So I collected these and first made a palm tree. I am experimenting with more.”

Sajeesh posted pictures of his creations on social media which attracted public attention. That is when he turned to miniature art and subsequently created a mini Air India aircraft.

He then turned to leaf art using broad banyan tree leaves on which he recreated pictures of celebrities.

“I used to draw when I was in school and college and it was this talent which prompted me to take up leaf art.

“It’s time-consuming. It takes two hours at a stretch to complete a portrait.”

He draws the picture of a person on the banyan tree, and then using a pen knife, slowly and gently, scales through the borders.

“I made pictures of the leaders of Bahrain – His Majesty King Hamad and His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince Prime Minister. The art drew public attention when posted on social media. I got many offers as it’s also a great gift.”

His wife Rakhi, a school employee in Alappuzha, Kerala, and his eight-year-old son Adidev, are delighted with his artistic accomplishments and charitable acts.

For details, follow  @mtsajeeshpandalam on Instagram.

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