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Destined To Become An  Animator

Bikram Gurung is animating to inspire the country's youth

By Samriddhi Rai 

The outstandingly executed 3D animated advertisements of the Linez advertising agency regularly broadcasted during the intervals at Jai Nepal Cinema definitely raised a lot of eyebrows. Bikram Gurung, 33 is the sole mind behind these projects. Just one of those minds we call genius. Defying all assumptions, set ideas and limitations people like Bikram Gurung only inspire us to explore the infinite, amazing world of imagination.

A self-confessed fast learner, Bikram joined Arena Multimedia to take up a course in 3D animation in 2001 and since then there has been no looking back. Someone who had never used a computer before soon excelled as a student and just a year through his course, was offered a job as an instructor in the same institute. 
 

Enasha.com caught up with the skilled animator to know more on his life, his journey, his challenges and most importantly why he chose Nepal.

Excerpts:
 

What profession did you think you’d take up as a child? 
I thought I would be a rock star. (Laughs) But seriously, I was very much interested in music then and am still a passionate music lover even today.


Tell us about something about your background and your journey from your hometown to Nepal.
I was born in Kalimpong on December the 3rd 1975. Completed my schooling from St. Augustine’s school, my +2 education from St.Xavier’s, Sikkim and later graduated in Humanities from North Point College. In the year 1998, I visited Pokhara and volunteered to work as an English teacher at a school there. Three years later I entered Kathmandu and got myself admitted to Arena Multimedia to take up the course of graphics audio video and 3D animation.

Is it true that you’d never even touched or seen a computer before you came to Kathmandu?
Yeah! Very much true. Computers weren’t as accessible as much is it for kids today. Throughout my years as a student never really saw a computer. While in Pokhara did see a few, here and there. But was only lucky enough to just see it. It was when I came to Kathmandu, three years later that I actually got hold of it, touched it for the very first time.

Strange! For someone who hadn’t even touched a computer, let alone know how to use it, how did the idea of taking up a course of such magnitude ever come to you?
Strange huh! I think so too. I guess it was all written in the stars like I had been destined to become an animator. Well, here is the story. I was just walking in the lanes of Kantipath few days after arriving in KTM, browsing through the sign boards and the one that of Arena Multimedia caught my eyes. Casually walked into the office, got a free counseling and was determined to come back to take up the course as I walked out of the building. I was hungry for more knowledge on animation, curious as to how it really worked and very eager to learn more. In fact, the institution was unsure to take me up as a student since I didn’t even know the simplest of things like even booting a computer. But with so much determination within me and a handbook of few pages, worked on it for a week and got familiar with the computer, learnt all the basics: my required eligibility for my admittance for the course. A year through and I got offered a job as an instructor in the same institute. There has been no looking back, since.  

Phew! Quite a fairytale story that was. Now, tell us how do you like your job?
I love my job because I get to do what I love. After teaching in Arena for around 4 years  I joined Lines Advertising Agency in April 2006.My very first project as an animator for Linez was of Dhoom mosquito coil and since then have completed about half-a-dozen projects from creating animations to audiovisual presentations. My hard earned knowledge was all worth it after all.

Let’s hear about your works.
The motion graphics in ads of Rum Pum “truck ma luck”, dream cream biscuits, Mama chicken crackers, waiwai instant noodles. You obviously know about our in-house ads of Linez Advertising Agency. I have also been creating the audio visual presentations for the BOSS awards for the past three years.

What about your earnings, are you satisfied with it?
Pretty much satisfied, I’d have to say. Freelancing in Nepal is difficult but since I am teamed up with Linez, things have been a lot easier. At least, much more convenient earning wise had I been on my own.

What do you have to say about the career prospects in this field? What do you suggest to the younger generation of aspiring animators?
The scope is bright. I would want to encourage all who want to see themselves as animators to pursue in this field without any second thoughts. We have little animators in the country and that’s not because we lack talented people. I personally know some really skilled masters of animation but the major problem is them going astray. Within a few years, I am sure Nepal will be as competitive in this field as our neighboring nations. 
 
So, just out of curiosity, I am sure you have been noticing the sambhidan chunab campaign 3d animations presented by interface. What is your take on that?
Brilliant is the word. The most difficult part of animation, as I believe, is the part where the creator has to think of a character and create one. They’ve created five such interesting characters, the colors, graphics and the animation all in all is truly commendable.

How do you update yourself from the latest of 3D information?
Let me tell you, for people involved in animation, everyday is a learning process. To update myself I surf sites like 3d total.com. And read books on 3d max, which when I started off as an animator was at 3 and is now in its 9th version.

We would want to know about your favorite animated character?
Shrek is. One amazing animation that was. Besides that, a character mmm...I forgot the name..but a character from the animated movie Finding Nemo was very very interesting too.

Finally, what are your hopes for the future? Any dream project you have in your mind?
I am hopeful of a very positive future. My journey that started from Arena until now has been extremely adventurous. I have a series of projects down the pipeline and hope to excel my skills with every work. I am more interested in motion graphics which gives fast results and is also exciting to create. However, I dream of the day to form a good team of Nepali animators and create our very own first Nepali animated movie in the future.



 

 

 

Some of his animation works

 
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