Animations – what was once predominantly used for kid’s cartoons is now everywhere from ad movies to online learning. Our student contributor Muhsin Mohamed has an animated conversation with Ajay Ashruf, taking us behind the scenes of a much loved but little known area of work.
Ajay Ashruf is a Senior Compositor at Prayan Animation Studio, Trivandrum. As he answers Muhsin ’s questions, we get to see how his passion landed him in a job he loves.
- Why do you think people want to be animators? Why did you want to be an animator?
Each person has their own interest/opinion/reason. I am an Animator because I enjoy being an Animator. I love it, I’m comfortable with it. Like someone said ”If you choose as your career something you love to do in an hour of leisure, you will never have to WORK a day in your life”. Though not consciously, that is how my career choice has turned out to be.
- Did you have an inspiration to be an animator? If yes, who or what? Who was your role model in your line of work?
This may come as childish, but seeing a lot of cartoons, animated movies, animated shorts etc. has been my inspiration. And as for persons- obviously, Walt Disney. Then there’s Joseph Hanna, William Barbera, the Late Satoshi Kon, Hayao Miyazaki
- In what way do you want your animations to be successful?
To prove that animation is for everyone, not only for kids. Just another medium of Storytelling. But with more freedom of creativity.
- How much of animation is the human’s credit and how much is the machine/software’s?
I would say 60 % human 40 % software
- What are the subjects you had to implement in your line of work?
If you mean “subjects” learnt in school – None. But right from language usage, mathematical thinking, knowledge of people, places, stories, cultures…. It all adds up to make you a better animator. And of course stuff like team work, communication skills etc are all the more important in a creative field like this.
- When did you start animating and when did you start wanting to be an animator?
I always wanted to be an animator… But it was in Year 2006 that my dream actually materialised.
- Who are your usual target audience?
Usually children. But we do get to please the Adult audience also.
- What are the courses you have learnt to be an animator?
2 year Diploma course in 3D Animation and VFX.
- Do you HAVE to be good in drawing to animate?
Not really, but it is an added Bonus.
- If I know programming but don’t draw good, can I still be an animator?
Yes. Thats is possible.
- Do I HAVE to learn programming?
- Do I have to be good in math too?
No. only basic Geometry will be fine.
- What are the good colleges where I can learn animation?
I recommend private institutions that teach proper animation courses. There are some colleges especially in Bangalore that have courses like BSc in Animation. My advice would be ALWAYS check with Alumni about the word of mouth reputation to make sure that the course is worth it- Are they giving enough hands on practice…What kind of exposure are the students getting…How active is the placement cell…Do your homework, do not be misled by fancy ads.
- Animation courses…Multimedia courses …all the same?
Same software but different area of work. Both are connected but not the same.
- What about sfx? Related?
Sfx can mean two things- sound effects or special effects. Special effects is related to live action films. Like giving smoke and explosion during actual shooting.
- Where can animators find work?
Animators can find work in any studio. Be it movie or ad studio. Also they get placed in real estate/ architectural/design firms. Nowadays educational companies are also looking for animators. Many of my friends do a lot of freelancing. There are endless possibilities.
- Do you have any inspirational words for those who want to be animators?
Always try something new. And Have the P.P.T. rule in any animation.
Passion, Patience and Talent.