Tell us little bit about who you are? Who do you work for? What is your job profile?
Completing my +12, I joined “ZEE INSTITUTE OF CREATIVE ARTS” and got training in Classical Animation for 3yrs.By the timeI was fond to the STOP MOTION Medium. I, myself learned the technique of STOP MOTION ANIMATION and applied it in my works. Also I worked as a mentor of Stop Motion Animation in Arena Animation Chowringhee (Kolkata). I’m an independent Stop Motion Film maker working for my own production house- Handmade Animation Studio.
Since how long you have been working in the animation industry?
Since 2009, I have started my career as a Stopmotion artist.
Name few of the projects that you’ve worked in the past?
From being a Director in Adams Apple studio to my home production “Koi Deewana Kehta Hai.”Later, many more experimental work and in 2012 I introduced my own studio “Handmade Animation Studio”.
Tell us something about “Handmade Animation Studio”?
Handmade animation studio is not just a name rather it justifies its characteristics. The word stop motion and handmade is interrelated to each other. Introducing stop motion in India was a dream to me, being a stop motion artist for a long time i need not had to think in executing it, just i needed it to give it a name. For handmade, quality is given as a first preference, and to entertain audience we are in search for the ultimate goal. After working on many of my projects, I decided to introduce my home production to a large scale,“Handmade Animation Studio” was thus established. Handmade has a special feature of Stopmotion. Thus, Handmade animation studio was introduced to the audience.
‘Ashur Binashni’ what makes you to choose this Mythological story? What were the difficulties you have faced while working on ‘Ashur Binashni’ & also let us know about the next step please?
I was in Kolkata when the concept of “Ashur Binashani ” was introduced to me by our fellow member. At the beginning, it did not impress me. But finally, we decided and set off for the journey with “Maa Durga”The story is not about profit or loss, good or evil but about the ultimate power of unity against the blessing which morphs into curse of destruction. It is about the Mythological story of “Maa Durga” vanquishing the tyranny of the demon King Mahishasura.
Mythological story were tough to make. Right from making the costume eye catching to create heavenly and devilish environment, proper light and godly body language of each characters were the things we had to overcome along with keeping all the ritual aspects in mind. Moreover it is a token to the audience.We have already started working on our next action adventure film.
Stages of making ‘AshurBinashni’.
Well it’s all started on January 2012, we got concept of Maadruga to start with studio’s first film, we started the R&D, as we were in Kolkata for this project and it’s a place well known for durga pujas, so it was an easy task for the R&D. Our writer Sudeshna Dutta and co-writer Subhasis Dutta started writing the script of the film, as they were well known to the concept, they beautifully lined up the script, and later the script was translated in Hindi by Geeta Mukherjee.
As the script was going on, we also started the character designing and layout design, our lead character designer Pritam Maity was good with his skill, he designed all the character of the film, and Soumyadip Sarkaracted as the layout designer, our art director Avijit Das with good color sense developed all the look and feel of the film. As we completed the script, we started with voice recording, I decided to go with the regional folk singer for the voice of the film, because they got a mythological musical grace in their voice. As me and co-director sudeshna dutta was busy with the recording, Pritam Maity layed all the script in storyboard format, and soumya dipsarkar was started to make the layout models. I started to make the character models, as we decided to make the character with Foam latex. For this, we first have to make the character model then make a mold of the character and then fill the mold with the mixture of foam latex and bake it.
In main characters, we used ball and socket rig, and in others we used wire rig, as ball and socket rigs were too costly. And after the process has completed we get a character model with moveable arms, leg, head, we use white beads for the eyes, and after that all the costume design and props for the character are made by SudeshnaDutta. We used artificial hair for the character which we can found in the market. Then we started with the animation, most of the animations are done by me, accompaniedby two other animators Dev Sing and Atulroy.
Stop motion animation is quite difficult medium, here we don’t have anything called ctrl+z or undo, it’s a straight forward process. We manually manipulated possess of the character and captured it with a real camera. Our director of photography Rajiv Chandran workedwell with his sense of light and shadow, it’s quite tough to light the miniature world as we want it look real that to with the characters around. There are lots of FX work which is been done by Sumittrivedi. At the stage of pre-production, we decided in which shot’s we will need FX and which not, this decision helped us in dealing with the production andpost-production, and make our work more easy. Music is the life of the film, and the life is given by Anil Rastogi. For me, it was and great feel to work with this group of peoples.
What were the technology you have used while the making of ‘AshurBinashini’
For capturing animation, we used Canon DSLR camera and Dragon Frame 3.0 one of the best stop motion software and Characters are made from the Gm Foam latex. And rest all was handcrafted by our team.
Let us know about your team member and how are you able to manage the team successfully.
Handmade family completes with the member of 20 folks. Among them, all the members are given the responsibility of each department. Each department are provided with a deadline to complete the work to make a pressure free environment in the studio.
What inspired you to choose a career in animation industry? How did you go about pursuing it?
I love the look and the feel of this medium, its neither on paper like 2d animation nor on computer like 3d animation. We got actual lights on the floor, with Hand build environment and a character, now setup a real camera and start the animation. It feels like we are on a live action shooting setup, location ready, lights setup, actor is ready, camera rolling and action!!!
How do you feel your work has progressed since you started your career?
Every project comes with a new challenge and new ways to learn. With the modern technique and along with the experience since I started, things have improved. At the very beginning I started as a single Stopmotion artist and along with the time and my parents blessings, I established my own studio and now “ Miles to go before I sleep”.
Thank you Amit for sharing your experiences with us and all the very best for your future endeavors.