13 May, 2021

Time’s Filter: Made For Each Other

They are the faces that launch a thousand products. Some are famous now; some are forever touched by the magic of old ads.

The ubiquitous Sasha Chettri, face of Airtel
Photograph by Apoorva Salkade
Time’s Filter: Made For Each Other

The day truly dawns, for most of us, with a steaming cuppa and a newspaper that traditionally complements it; for some, the morning television bulletins work just fine; for millennials, a scroll through their social media feeds is mandatory. But, along with the freshly minted news, there are ubiquitous faces—some fresh, some worn well, others the visual equivalent of the tiredest of clichés—asking you to subscribe to a telecom service, buy a deo, or use an app to book hotels, their cheery smiles enticing you at every turn of a morning paper? Most aren’t well-known actors, sportspersons, or TV stars. Yet, they have accompanied you through every stage of your life: from television commercials and YouTube shorts, to larger-than-life billboards towering over every road across the country. Like the bespectacled eyes of Dr Eckleberg looking down from a billboard on the road that ran between West Egg and Manhattan in The Great Gatsby, one cannot ignore their gaze; they have a curious way of lodging themselves in your head. The owners of those faces are...

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