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Animated action

The animation industry is going to be the next sunrise sector in the country as global players realise India’s true creative and marketing strength, writes Pranab Ghosh

education Updated: May 29, 2009 13:05 IST
Pranab Ghosh

Subrata Basak, 28
Job: Animator

Subrata Basak, 28, passed his BCom in 1999 and went on to do a diploma in multimedia from Pentasoft Technologies Limited in 2000. He joined the same institute as faculty and earned Rs 8,000 in the first month. Today, as a professional animator and editor, he earns around Rs 50,000 per month.

“The animation industry is going to be the next sunrise industry in the country as the global players who had earlier seen India as a hub for low-cost operations, have now started realising its true creative and marketing strengths,” says Sanjay Banerjee, CMD Turtle Animation, which bagged the Nasscom award for best innovative idea. Basak agrees. “Animation in India would grow 200 times in the next 10 years and outsourcing jobs and home production will fuel this growth,” he says. And biggies like UTV, Big Animation, and Animatzione will ride high on this growth tide, he feels.

Basak “always wanted to get into some creative work,” and animation was just the right platform. “The work is totally different from other normal jobs,” he says. A first- generation animator who comes from a business family, to Basak the best part of animation is the scope of constant creative innovation that it provides. It’s almost therapeutic. However, he hates the long hours that the job demands. “One must be mentally prepared to forgo a social life,” he says.

Things have improved for animation. “Earlier the scope was not that wide; but now new institutes are opening up and people are getting many options to choose from,” says Basak. “An animator with professional qualification gets opportunities in TV channels and animation production houses… S/he can also work as freelance animator or can create his/her own animation film.” He, however, is of the opinion that despite the several animation institutes a student would gain more if he learns from a professional working in the animation industry.

Basak counts ad agencies, TV channels and independent filmmakers as his prime clients. He rues the lack of trained professionals in the field and says the gap is growing by the day. “A creative mind and patience are the major pre-requisites for success in the industry” says Basak, our young achiever whose dream is to become one of the top animators of the country.

Career Ladder

Level 1: Entry level
Monthly salary: Rs 8,000 to 20,000 for a trainee, rising to Rs 20,to 40,000 after two years. Five years
plus, you could be earning in lakhs

Level 2: Dept lead/lead animator/team leader/supervisor
Monthly salary: Rs 50,000 to 75,000

Plus and Minus
High salary prospects: you can earn more than a lakh a month after a few years
Mastering the software requires hard work and progress up career ladder requires a lot of dedication