Dadasheb Phalke's Google Doodle
Google Doodle honoring India's iconic director Dadasheb PhalkeGoogle

Google is celebrating the 148th birth anniversary of Father of Indian Cinema, Dadasaheb Phalke, with a doodle dedicated to him. The iconic director helmed India's first full-length feature film, Raja Harishchandra, in 1913.  

The doodle shows a young Phalke holding film negatives, directing and giving scene directions, but do you know you made the illustration? The doodle is made by London-based artist Aleesha Nandhra.

"I had the amazinggg opportunity to create a @google doodle for google India! It's to celebrate the 148th Birthday of Dadsaheb Phalke, who created India's first silent film in 1913. You can check it out if you head over to google India, Canada, Australia or New Zealand. Or by going to the google doodle archive," she posted on Instagram Monday.

When asked about the illustration, Nandhra told International Business Times India, "I wanted to create a doodle in which Dadasaheb was instantly recognizable, but also able to give you a bit more information about him if you weren't aware of who he was." 

"That's where the little vignettes of Dadasaheb interacting with other people or directing came from. He didn't only direct, he had his hand in all parts of the creative process of filmmaking," she added.

Talking about Google selecting her doodle to honor the legendary filmmaker, she said, "In the process of creating the doodle, I sent over several rough ideas and Sophie, (who was my Art Director for the doodle) selected the rough that she thought was the strongest. I then continued to work on it and refine it."

Nandhra, who had always loved arts, was approached by Google for the illustration for the first time. She graduated from the Cambridge School of Art in 2014 and has been working as a freelance illustrator and printmaker since then.

"I have always loved visual arts, and very early on, I knew I wanted to pursue art in higher education. After leaving school, I went on to study BA Illustration at The Cambridge School of Art, and has been working as a freelance Illustrator and printmaker," she told IBT India.

Nandhra's illustration was selected as the doodle to honor the legendary filmmaker on his birth anniversary, April 30. During his time, Phalke made 95 movies and 27 short films. Mohini Bhasmasur (1913), Satyavan Savitri (1914), Lanka Dahan (1917), Shri Krishna Janma (1918) and Kaliya Mardan (1919) are some of his memorable works.

On April 30, 1870, Phalke was born as Dadasaheb Govind Phalke in Trymbakeshwar, located in India's Maharashtra state. He studied photography, lithography, architecture, drawing, painting, engineering, and even magic. He started his career as a photographer and also worked with painter Raja Ravi Varma.

It was in 1912 he made the film Raja Harishchandra and a year later it was publicly shown, which marked the beginning of the Indian cinema.