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Unlocking the Magic of Animation: A Guide to Building a Rewarding Career as an Animator

Career as an Animation

If you are an artist and looking forward to pursuing your art in career, you have several options today than ever. If you are good at designing then there are options like jewelry design, graphic design, industrial design, ceramic design, fashion design and animation. Each of these careers needs something more than designing. Like a Jewellery designer needs to have an eye on jewelry and accessories, a fashion designer should have a sense of fashion and colors and material. Similarly, if you have a sense of editing, storytelling etc. then you can combine these skills with your art and become an animator.

Animation is a fascinating art form that has gained immense popularity over the past few years. It involves creating moving images by manipulating still images or objects in various ways, creating the illusion of motion. It is a blend of creativity, technology, and storytelling, and has become an essential part of the entertainment industry. With the growth of digital media and the entertainment industry, the demand for skilled animators has increased, making animation a viable career option for many.

In this blog post, we will explore the various aspects of a career in animation and discuss the skills required, educational qualifications, job opportunities, and salary prospects in this field.

Why become an Animator?

Animators are an artist who specializes in creating animation art. Animation is the art of making pictures seen as moving. While in the past when there was no technology, an animator would draw or paint images on some sheets and change them at a fast speed to show animation, today much of this work is done with the help of 2-D and 3-D Animation Design software as well as computer-generated imagery (known as CGI).

Most of computer animation today is 3D with detailed animation, however, 2D animation is still prevalent for its faster result and low cost.

As an Animator, you will develop all kinds of images using animation software or CGI. You will then develop a sequence of these images. Each image has all the detailing including designs, colors, shapes and sizes are done by an animator. In the sequence of these images, the animator will ensure that they pick the right frequency so that the images look like moving videos. As an animator, you will work for short films, feature films, animated gifs, promotional videos, corporate video films, video games, motion graphics, etc.

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What does an Animator do?

As an animator, depending on your field of specialization, you would have the following roles and responsibilities:

  1. With the help of computer animation or modeling programs, you will design and create two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) images to depict objects in motion (moving) or illustrate a process.
  2. You will design complex animation and graphics with your own judgment, and creativity with the help of Computer-generated imagery and equipment.
  3. You will use different shades of colors, light, texture, shadows and transparency to make objects and characters as real as possible. You might also manipulate static images to give an illusion of motion.
  4. You will use story development, direction, cinematography and editing techniques to animation to create a storyboard so that the flow of animation can be managed. You will also map out key characters and scenes through these techniques and skills.
  5. You will work to design and produce multimedia campaigns, handle budgeting, and scheduling and assist in production coordination, background design, processes etc.

Skills Required for a Career in Animation

To excel in the field of animation, one needs to have a creative bent of mind, a passion for art, and a love for storytelling. Along with these, some of the essential skills required for a career in animation are:

  1. Drawing Skills: Drawing is the foundation of animation, and having good drawing skills is a must for anyone aspiring to become an animator. An understanding of proportions, anatomy, and perspective is essential in creating lifelike characters and backgrounds.
  2. Computer Skills: With the advent of technology, most animation work is now done on computers. Animators need to be proficient in various software such as Adobe After Effects, Autodesk Maya, and Adobe Premiere Pro.
  3. Communication Skills: Animators work in teams and need to communicate their ideas effectively. Good communication skills are necessary for collaborating with other team members and conveying ideas to clients.
  4. Attention to Detail: Animation is a time-consuming process, and attention to detail is crucial to ensure that the final product meets the client’s expectations. Animators need to be meticulous and patient in their work.

Educational Qualifications for a Career in Animation

While there is no specific educational qualification required to become an animator, a degree or diploma in animation or a related field can be an added advantage. Some of the popular courses in animation include:

  1. Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Animation: A four-year degree course that covers various aspects of animation, including character design, storyboarding, and 3D animation.
  2. Diploma in Animation: A one to a two-year course that focuses on the technical aspects of animation, including software and programming.
  3. Certificate Course in Animation: A short-term course that provides an overview of animation and its various techniques.

Job Opportunities in Animation

The animation industry is vast and offers a wide range of job opportunities for aspiring animators. Some of the popular job profiles in the animation industry include:

  • 2D Animator: A 2D animator creates two-dimensional images and characters, including hand-drawn animation, stop-motion animation, and digital animation.
  • 3D Animator: A 3D animator creates three-dimensional images and characters using software like Autodesk Maya, 3ds Max, and Blender.
  • Storyboard Artist: A storyboard artist creates a visual representation of the story, including shots, angles, and camera movements.
  • Character Designer: A character designer creates the visual appearance of a character, including the color scheme, clothing, and accessories.
  • VFX Artist: A VFX artist creates special effects and composites them with live-action footage.

Salary of an animator

At the entry-level, you can join as an intern with a basic salary of Rs. 10,000 to 20,000 per month. If you are a postgraduate from a prestigious school like IIT, you might be earning around Rs. 80,000 to 1,00,000 per month.

At the junior level with a work experience of 2-6 years, you would be earning anything between Rs. 25,000 to 3,00,000 per month.

At the middle level with an experience of 10-12 years, you would be earning anything between Rs. 50,000 to 4,00,000 per month.

At the senior level of over 15 years of work experience, you would be earning anything between Rs. 70,000 to 5,00,000 per month or even more.

Career progression in Animation profession

If you join as a trainee (animator), with time you will be promoted to Animator (3D)/ Animator (2D)/ Flash Animator/ Character animator and then Senior Animator (3D)/ senior Animator (2D), etc. and then Lead Animator and then head animator and then you may even go into marketing or sales department or even in the admin department.

The career growth in university and college states from Assistant Professor and then Associate Professor, Professor and Professor Emeritus. Professors can also get administrative positions such as Director/Dean/Vice Chancellor, etc.

The animation industry in India is growing at a rapid pace, and the future looks promising for those considering a career in animation. According to a report by, the Indian animation industry is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11.9% during the period of 2021-2026.

The animation industry in India has seen significant growth in recent years, with a focus on developing original content and producing animation for various mediums such as television, film, and gaming. The industry has also seen a significant increase in the number of animation studios, both large and small, across the country.

One of the main drivers of the growth of the animation industry in India is the increasing demand for animated content, not just in India but also in the international market. Many Indian animation studios are now producing content for global audiences, leading to an increase in job opportunities for animators in India.

Another significant factor contributing to the growth of the animation industry in India is the government’s support for the sector. The government has introduced various initiatives and incentives to promote the animation industry in India, including tax exemptions and subsidies for animation studios.

According to a report by FICCI and Ernst & Young, the Indian animation industry is expected to reach a size of INR 27 billion by 2025. The report also suggests that the industry will create over 50,000 new job opportunities in the next five years. The growth of the animation industry in India has also led to an increase in the number of animation institutes and training centers across the country. Many of these institutes offer specialized courses in animation, visual effects, and gaming, providing students with the skills and knowledge required to pursue a career in animation.

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