These days, it is not uncommon to see Indian children talking about mythological stories of Indian culture like Ramayana, Mahabharata and the legendary characters such as Lord Hanuman, Lord Ganesha and many more. This reintroduction to the fast-fading Indian culture can be attributed to the fascinating animated movies that have recapitulated the good old Indian epics for our young generation. And who can forget the ever-so-famous characters of Tom & Jerry, Mowgli, Stuart Little, Popeye, and many others that were brought to life by animation. In the endearing world of animation, lifeless images are brought to life through different tools and techniques.
With the expanding world of media, the demand of animators is also on the rise. Be it movies, television, cartoon film making, advertising, media or gaming, good animators rule the roost. In the world of animation, reality meets imagination and impossible becomes possible. Unthinkable graphics, special effects and evolved technologies come together to create a world that sweeps you off your feet. This upcoming industry has opened new doors to opportunities. A lot of creative people are choosing multimedia and animation as full-time careers and making good money out of it.
Multimedia means combining text, graphics, animation, video, sound, interactivity and conveying a message in an appealing manner. Therefore, just being creative is not enough. One has to be technically sound too. Although one has to have a good drawing hand to become a good multimedia expert. Thus, if you are blessed with immense creativity and imagination, there is no dearth of job opportunities. One can find a good full-time or freelancing job in the fields of television, cinema, video production, advertising agencies, publishing, web design, preparation of CD ROMs, fashion designing, textile designing, interior design, etc.
When it comes to training, there are numerous computer-training centres that offer training in multimedia and animation. It is good to check out the facilities and faculty at the institute before joining any institute. One can enroll in a Visual Communication and Design course straight after 12th standard. However, if one is already a graduate in fine arts with an aptitude for drawing, one can join production houses or studios as a trainee. National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad offers a course in Animation Film Design. In private institutes, Arena Multimedia offers basic as well as advanced courses. Even NIIT has developed a special programme called Maxi media to help learners build the skills needed for this market. Then, there is Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics that offers advanced courses in multimedia and animation.
Professional training is a must to handle animation and multimedia software like 3D Studio Max, Maya for 3D Animation, Animo and US Animation for 2D animation, along with skills set in Photoshop, Adobe After Effects and so on. All the institutes mentioned above provide training in these and there are advanced courses to acquire specialization.
One can choose from the following type of courses to make a career in this segment:
The foundation courses offer an introduction to the fascinating world of multimedia, and its tools and techniques. Digital printing and publishing courses provide training in designing products for the publishing segment. Digital web authoring trains you in website creation. Digital film animation is all about creating professional animators. Digital interactive multimedia course acquaints students with the new media like mobile, Internet, etc. An advanced diploma in digital visual communication and animation gives hands on knowledge of this industry and prepares one for careers in animation, multimedia, special effects, games and others.
One must understand that all courses offered are not of the same caliber. Before joining any institute or course, one must contact these institutes and discuss in detail with the faculty and understand their individual strengths. Also, it is a good idea to meet people in the industry and ask questions. Try to find out if the institute offers practical experience. Also, find out if they can help you find a job once you have finished the course.
After completing an appropriate and acquiring the appropriate skills, one can be absorbed at various levels such as graphics designer, visual artist, supervisor, digital film animator, senior animator, web designer or web author. Of late, this industry has become very high paying and salaries are almost on par with the software industry. There is also demand for Indian animators in the international markets due to the low costs incurred here for 2D and 3D content development.
In India, leading animation houses are in cities such as Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Thiruvananthapuram. Companies such as UTV Toons, Zee Institute of Creative Arts (ZICA), 2NZ Studios, Prasad Studios, Crest Communications, Films Division, Maya Entertainment, Silverton Studio, Acropetal, jadooWorks, Color Chips, Toonz Animation, Heart Animation, etc. some of the premier ventures that deal in the world of animation and special effects.