Dr Akther Husain : ART - The Language of Heart

November 14, 2008

The magic of good art and good artiste is that it just happens and it is something that cannot be explained.  An artiste is a creator and if he is able to invoke strong emotions in others with his meaningful creations, he certainly possesses magneticism, magic and spirit in his creations in abundance.  Dr Akhter Husain, a product of this coastal city, is an artiste par excellence endowed with this rare talent as his creations have succeeded in making people think and think again, reflect and ultimately react, thus arousing vivid emotions in them. International awards and accolades have added a certain vow factor to his persona as an artiste and he is certainly raring to go.  

An Orthodontist by profession Dr Akhter nurtures a strong fervor for art as a hobby. Over the years this hobby has become an obsession of immense satisfaction and it can be said that ‘sky is the limit’ for his creative surge which is waiting to explode with a big bang effect. Approaching 50, it looks as though experience, experimentation and exposure have added a touch of maturity to his creations.  

Creativity – the key factor 

Dr Akhter always had a penchant for art in its multifaceted form and visual art has been his forte.  He combines photography, digital technology and the traditional paint to give vent to his creative imaginations and give life to the mysteries and delicate intricacies of nature in an abstract form. He says “Curiosity is the key to creativity.  It is not afraid of failures.  An artiste is someone who creates or captures the beauty of mundane situations into moments of intense feelings or emotions”.   

By his own submissions he is not a purist and uses modern technology and combination of different modes to explore and experiment so as to give vent to his creative impulses.  “My work starts with camera, gets worked in the computers and later gets printed in the canvas”, he admits.  Fortunately, he has chosen a profession – Orthodontics, which calls for a good degree of aesthetic sensibility. Of course, choosing a profession and a hobby had its own conflicts.  His father wanted him to be a doctor, for his considered ‘art as a great hobby but a poor profession’.  Akhter, however, wanted to be an artist and as he puts it succinctly “I ended up in between”. Further he says “dentistry is basically an art work and skill.  A dentist with an artistic bent of mind will do much better in his profession.  The world is biased towards good looking people and I am happy to use my skills to put smiles on those faces born with deformities”.  

The tight-rope walking 

Over the years he has been able to strike a balance between his profession and his passionate hobby despite the pulls and pressures of a demanding profession and the myriad responsibilities that go with it.  He is serving as the Professor and Head of the Department of Orthodontics and Dent facial Orthopedics at Yenepoya Dental College and Secretary, Governing Council, Yenepoya Medical and Dental Colleges, Mangalore. He also runs a private practice and amidst this busy schedule he squeezes at least 2 hours everyday to indulge in his passion of creating art endlessly.  

Dr Akhter’s father was a businessman who was a lover of music and art.   It can be said that art runs in the family and as he recalls “I have been drawing images ever since I have been able to hold a pencil in my hand”.  But he was oblivious of the extraordinary talent bubbling within him. As it happens in most cases his talent was spotted by others. “I remember sketching images in whatever I could find and my teacher in Canara High School used to collect whatever I drew and left behind.  She was the first one to recognize my talent”, he recalls.  

“Basically we are all born with some talents.  When we grow up we tend to give it up.  The only difference with me is that I held on to the rope of art.  I had lot of reasons to give up but stuck to it despite all odds” he says.  Initially his obsession had an impact on his formal studies. But as years passed by he was mature enough to prioritize the needs of the moment.  He graduated in Dentistry from Davanagere College and did his Post graduation from KMC, Manipal. The inspiration to be a dentist came from his neighbour late Dr I J Benny, a leading dentist of his time.  Akhter used to visit his clinic often spending his evening with him and was enamored by what he saw.  To put in his own words “Dr Benny had the best teeth setting in Mangalore those days and I saw art in Dr Benny’s work”.  

It was during his medical education that Dr Akhter took to photography seriously.  He made best use of the library of Davanagere Art College to gain more proficiency.  For sometime he tried his hand at taxidermy (the art of preparing, stuffing and mounting the skin of animals) but gave up seeing the cruelty involved in it and was slowly drawn towards wild photography.   

Endless possibilities through technology

Advancement in digital technology offered enormous scope for Dr Akhter to express himself better and improvise his creativity.  Being an artist, photographer and digital graphic specialist offers him boundless opportunities and possibilities to experiment and explore.   He is now concentrating more on visual arts, which has now come to be recognized as a separate branch of art.  

He draws his inspiration from nature which offers infinite possibilities for an artiste.  Flowing water is also dearer to his heart and most often brings a series of works on a particular topic.  For an artiste there is art in everything.  His creation “The Look” is nothing but a three photographs of three different stones put together to get that stunning look.  A piece of wood that he picked up from a forest was transformed into a marvelous piece of art work by Dr Akhter when he embellished it with a human eye.  This creation   fetched him an award in New York.    The guru-shishya is another creation, a mixture of traditional with contemporary that gives an insight about the creator and the talent nurtured by creativity. He likes action and his creation “Kambala” has won him both popularity and recognition.  He advocates limited edition prints to give exclusivity for art aficionados and prevent plagiarism. 

Awards and accolades have poured in from all parts of the globe ever since he first came into limelight in 1999 by winning the Maruti Esteem Photo Contest.  His “Grip of life” won the commonwealth Photo award in 2002. Since then he was bagged international awards every year.  He shot into international fame when his “Sky is the Limit” was selected for the end Annual Art of Digital Show at San Diego in USA in 2007 from among the 83 finalists.  “I began sending entries for these competitions to assess myself and to know where I stand as an artiste”, he opines. 

Of late Dr Akhter has been concentrating on primitive art of India and is particularly interested in lifting visuals from primitive art.  He feels India is a paradise for photographers as its rich heritage offers humungous opportunities for their creative pursuits.  Opening a gallery in the city is also taking shape in his mind and he is doing the groundwork for the same. . 


His obsession with his hobby has gone through its own domestic skirmishes.  His wife Haseena has always been supportive of his hobby.  But an artiste goes through a surge of moods and in the 20 years of the marriage Haseena has learnt it better.  “He is not a moody person as such but used to get irritated if I call him to sit beside me”.  Dr Akhter adds “in the initial years of marriage she was more attached to me but now she feels I need to achieve something in the field of art which is dearer to me”.


Despite his demanding schedule he gives top priority to his family and squeezes time to spend with his wife and three daughters Tanya (20) Zoya (15) and Riya (13).  Being the only male amidst 4 ladies he can ignore them at his own peril (!).  It can certainly be said that talent runs in the Akhter family and as adoring father he sees talent in all the three. Eldest daughter is studying dentistry. His second daughter Zoya is a class X students and has inherited his father’s talent but in a twisted form and is emerging as a promising creative writer.   A voracious reader she was one of the 16 finalists nationwide selected from among 10, 00,000 students from 5000 schools and 34 cities in a short story writing competition edited by celebrated writer Ruskin Bond.  Youngest daughter Riya is a class VIII student and has taken on the other interests of her father like playing and experimenting with clay. 

7th Heaven Dr Akhter’s tastefully done home at Fathima Apartments in Britto Road amply mirrors the man and his creative instinct.  Aptly titled, it serves as the perfect milieu for the creative artist in him to get the required vitality to transform his creativity into beautiful works of art.   As he plans to devote more attention to his hobby in the days to come one can expect Dr Akhter to create more ripples in the art world. 

More Photographs : Click Here

by Florine Roche - Daijiworld Media Network Mangalore
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Comment on this article

  • javed sheik, dubai

    Tue, Nov 23 2010

    one of the god person

  • Dr Hakeem, jeddah Saudi Arabia

    Tue, May 18 2010

    Dear Sir,

    Masha Allah .. May Allah subhanauthallah give you good health and wisdom to think and imagine such master pieces...you are a true source of inspiration for many..I am proud to be one.



  • Latif Mapal , Uppinangadi- Jeddah

    Mon, Dec 29 2008

    Excellent work...!keep it up. thank for daijiworld... to bring out this news

  • Dr Manju Mathew, Canada

    Sat, Dec 13 2008

    Great job Akhter!!! your artwork has improved immensely over the years!! looks excellent!regards to Haseena too.your family pic looks great!


    Wed, Nov 26 2008

    Congrats Dr. Akthar on your EXCELLENT work.

  • ranjith poojary, gulf of aden

    Thu, Nov 20 2008

    in one of my rare visits to mangalore. i remember akther saying to me.. if not for Mr. Muhammed kamal i would be nowhere! so i thought that it should be worth mentioning him atleast! nowadays ... who remembers those memories!

  • haya hamza, ksa

    Wed, Nov 19 2008

    Excellent work...it gets better and better as the years pass by..It makes us all proud !

  • dr.jasmine, mlore

    Tue, Nov 18 2008

    Keep up the good work doctor.

  • Vishenth Prabhu, Valencia, USA

    Tue, Nov 18 2008

    Dr. Akhtar, My family and I have this gratitude for your kind deed 16 years back when our daughter was just 2. Whenever we talk of doctors and our encounters with different people in our lives, I always say “God Bless that man, Dr. Akhtar - he is the one responsible for your pretty face”. You do not even remember us, Dr. Akhtar but I will never forget you, even though we met so long ago. Your character and the gentle touch can even be seen in the paintings you have produced. God Bless you and your family and all your future endeavors. Vishenth Prabhu

  • Dr Farooq, Manchester UK

    Tue, Nov 18 2008

    Congratulations Dr Akther. That was indeed a great article  which I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. It has aptly described you, the  optimist,  a person with positive attitude and a  motivator. It just brought back memories of Davangere , where we shared a house together . I remember the dark room we set up at home where we  developed those photo prints in the crudest form but most effective.

    I feel proud that I was  part of it all somewhere along the line. I am so glad you have mentioned your late father so many times (an honourable man) who was the unrelenting force behind your  success .

  • Pearl Saldanha , Mumbai/Mlore

    Mon, Nov 17 2008

    Right on doc! My fave dentist is an allround personality! Congrats doc and was really good to see all the pics, ur family pic is The Best :)

  • Dr.Navas, kerala

    Mon, Nov 17 2008

    we were together at davengere clicking snaps,experimenting,discussing photography,could not learn much from him as "it was pure unmatched talent" thank u akther for being a wonderful person and artist Dr.Navas

  • lesly , california

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    one of the coolest dude i have met.

  • mohammed ansary, saudi arabia

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    highly talented and nice person. deserves much more recognition both national and international. inspiration for the youngsters.

  • Smitha Mascarenhas, Mangalore/Dubai

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    Nice article on Dr. Akhter Husain. I feel so privileged to have had the opportunity to know the Dr. and his family closely since I worked for Yenepoya Institutions for few years as well as giving tutions to his daughter Zoya (she was in Primary that time and very naughty & smart girl. Hope she remembers me too). Its nice to see the three daughters grown up into beautiful young women just like their parents. Also I feel very happy to read that all three daughters are talented just like Dr. Akhter. In total, Husain family is a wonderful family. Dr. Akhter has always been talented and his artwork brings out life even in lifeless things like rocks, bark of tree, set of dentures etc. My best wishes to you Sir and also to your family. [There was one mistake in the article I would like to point out - Dr. Akhter's eldest daughter Tanya must be around 20 yrs. of age and not 10 as mentioned in the article.]

    Note from Editor: Thank You Smitha. Error has been rectified.

  • tanisha, mangalore

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    cool painting the imagination is great

  • Rachna Taranath, Bangalore

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    He is truly amazing and unbelievable!! Happy to have met a person like you!!

  • Abdul Naseer K. A., Mangalore/Abu Dhabi

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    Whole Mangalore knows that you are a very good dentist, it's a pleasure to know another side of yours. i wish you all the success. thanks to Florine Roche and Daijiworld for their evergrowing outstanding and wonderful coverages.

  • harini, kavoor/mangalore

    Sat, Nov 15 2008



    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    well done Doc. you are really a good modern creative artist. wish you all the best.

  • Rose Kamath, Mangalore

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    Congrats Dr. Akthar on your excellent work of Art. Besides being a great Dentist, I also think you are a talented artist. We are proud of you.Keep up to your good work. The article was very interesting and it was nice to see your lovely family picture. Regds. Dr.Rose Kamath, Dr. Karen Menezes and Vernon Kamath, Dubai

  • abid, mangalore

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    I allways appreciate Dr.Akhter Husaian. He is very brilliant person.At this moment I was wondered why there is no mention of his Guru Late Mr.Muhammad Kamal.

  • abid, mangalore

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    I always apprreciate Dr.Akhter Husaian. He is very brilliant person.At this moment I was wondered why there is no mention of his Guru Late Mr.Muhammad Kamal.

  • dollslikeus, union ohio

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    I love your artwork it is so beutiful it is easier then ever today to take great pictures the digital cameras make some pictures as pretty as a painting .

  • mohs irshad, mangalore/dubai

    Sun, Nov 16 2008

    its really good to see de akhter hussain beside his reponsiblities and busy scedule he make time fr his passion of art, as i knw he is a good doctor and also a nice person may god bless him and take him to great hieight in his achievments ameen

  • Abdul Hameed M H, Mangalore/Dammam

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    Dr. Akhter is known to me as he is related Dr. Muneer Kamal. As I have not seen him for many years it was great to see his photo and his ART work.He had so much of energy when he was in colledge we used think that he is in a hurry to achieve every thing fast and he did that practically to the point of success.A great achiever par excellence.My personal good wishes to him to be more successful and look forward to meet him during my vacation this time.Thanks Daiji world.

  • Refai goonadka, Dubai, goonadka sullia

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    hello Dr. Akther.. hats off to u.. keep up ur good efforts on modern art..

  • siddique kaikamba, addoor kaikamba

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    well done

  • Raj, Udipi

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    Doctor- its beautiful.When you develop taste,you can enjoy life better, there will be lot of creativity.

  • Siddique NCC, mangalore

    Sat, Nov 15 2008


  • Rauf, Mangalore/Dubai

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    Its proud to say that I am his first cousin his achievements are his assets, he is also a good human being in nature,Aktheraka hats off! to yu Keep Going

  • rashid kandak abudhabi, mangalore

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    Dr. Akther is a nice person and i had with him and i feel good to see article him

  • Stan Rodrigues , Farla/Italy

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    Kudos!! A man with a vision!! Thank you for this beautiful article on Dr Akhter and his hobbies. A talented beautiful family.

  • Royston, IXE-KSA

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    Great talent. I knew you had a good sense of humour. Its wonderful to see your art.

  • shabir Ahmed, mangalore/mangalore

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    hello Dr. Akther.. hats off to u.. keep up ur good efforts on modern art..

  • Shiva, karkala/karkala

    Sat, Nov 15 2008

    Met him only once, but its amazing to see him so active at this age along with his other responsibilities.

  • CA NITIN J SHETTY, Mangalore

    Fri, Nov 14 2008

    Finding time for everything is the greatest achievement for a human being.I am glad to know that you have managed it.Keep up the good work.Best Wishes...

  • anita, mangalore

    Fri, Nov 14 2008

    Commendable work,Dr Akthar, Nice to know that you balance work, home and your passion for art. Hope mangaloreans get to see your work, all the best, and hope you win more laurels in your pursuit of photography. Thanks, to daijiworld, and Florine for that writeup.

  • javed shareef , puttur

    Fri, Nov 14 2008

    Dr Akther is a nice person and i had worked with him and i feel good to see article about him... he is a great person and good artist... i thanks daijiworld...

  • Priya Das, Karkala / Mumbai

    Fri, Nov 14 2008

    Interesting article on Dr Akther Hussain : ART - The Language of Heart. Thanks Ms. Florine Roche and of course Daijiworld, as always, for presenting in such a beautiful way, most of the articles.

  • anamika, mangalore

    Fri, Nov 14 2008

    A big salute to you Dr Akhter, you you must give a chance to every mangalorean to see your artwork

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