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Are you creative with a flair for design? Do new-age visual formats and effects inspire you? If yes, you should consider a career in animation. Animation refers to the technique of bringing inanimate objects to life with an illusion of movement. The animation uses computer-generated imagery to produce 2D or 3D objects like puppets, cartoons, etc. An EY report estimates that the segment will grow at a CAGR of 34.6% over the next three years to be worth Rs 129 billion by 2023 due to the growing demand for content and the adoption of emerging technologies. The spectacular success of blockbuster movies such as Kung Fu Panda, The Chronicles of Narnia, Bolt, Baahubali- The Lost Legends is a testimony to bright prospects in a career in animation.
An Animator breathes life into narrative sequences through special effects, visual content such as images, videos, etc., in advertisements, short films, kids’ movies, video games and many more. They use hand-drawing or computer-generated images (CGI) to produce an artwork. Some of the day-to-day tasks of an animator include designing frames and characters, drawing storyboards and models, using photographs to create a 2D/3D character and many more. Animators work with a team of actors, directors, game designers to determine the timing of movements to meet soundtrack/script requirements.
Aspiring animators should be creative and possess an appreciation of aesthetics. They should have a penchant for design, knowledge of colour palette and a keen eye for observation of human and animal movements and expressions. Technology is integral to animation, and hence, a good grasp of technical skills is a must. Animators should be thoroughly abreast of the latest techniques like prototyping, typesetting, and tools such as Adobe Creative Suite, 3D modelling, Cinema 4D, etc.
Coursework in communication design/visual arts/visual communication/digital filmmaking is a must for a career in animation. Courses in animation build a foundation for the discipline and equip you with proficiency in various tools such as After Effects, Animate, 3DS Max, Blender, etc.
It is recommended to start early on to gain a competitive edge in the industry. The minimum eligibility criterion for a career in animation is 10+2 from any stream. Most colleges require at least 50% aggregate percentage in 10+2. Choosing the right course at the right college is the critical step that can redefine your career trajectory.
A Bachelor’s degree in Communication Design is highly desirable to build your fundamentals in the discipline in the first year and prepare you to specialise in a chosen domain of communication design in the final year. The course employs an interdisciplinary approach and an industry interface to supplement classroom learning with the simulation of real-life case studies. Moreover, a curriculum emphasising case studies, project work, internships and practice school equips aspirants with a diverse skill set in tune with the requirements of the industry. Additionally, a comprehensive portfolio showcasing your achievements, participation in co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, industry events and professional workshops fetch brownie points in the CV.
Animation professionals work in various industries such as media and entertainment, gaming and esports, advertising and film production, edtech, retail and e-commerce. Some of the typical job roles are discussed below
The pandemic has unlocked a wide gamut of opportunities for a career in animation. The digital boom has led to a surge in online content consumption to an average of 6 hours 59 minutes from 3 hours and 17 minutes before the pandemic. According to a BCG-CII report, India commands 10% of the global share of the VFX and animation industry. With the advantage of a demographic dividend and the increasing Internet penetration, India is poised to emerge as an animation hub. A shift towards OTT consumption, vernacularization of content, the evolution of new techniques and technologies such as virtual production, real-time compositing and the rise of new players will be the game-changers in the industry.
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