We take immense pride in stating that our 3d animated short film “Gulaal” by student of MAAC Chowringhee has been shortlisted and nominated at Lift-Off Film Festival, UK.
Lift-Off Film festival, London came into being in 2010 inviting entries from all over the globe.
The initial response itself was overwhelming in quantity as well as quality.
The creation of the London Lift-Off Film Festival was led by the need to showcase the exceptional talents hidden behind the global indie films.
In it’s first year itself it received around 750 films across globe, outstanding both in quality and ambition.
From a small cinema in North West London, to the prestigious and beautiful screening rooms of Soho and West London — London Lift-Off has entertained and stunned audiences by continuously delivering on it’s platform exceptional work coupled with amazing networking and brilliant press coverage.
All of the awards are decided on audience choice and our winners get to potentially enjoy full official selections at every-single subsequent Lift-Off Film Festival around the world.
MAAC Chowringhee short film by students getting nominated for the same is a matter of great pride for us.
For a sneak peek on the whole movie making process and experience, let us take you on a short trip to behind the scenes of the said short film with MAAC Chowringhee.
The idea of the same sprung from the theme that was given for the 24 FPS international Awards, 2018.
MAAC Chowringhee participated in the same with a team of 15 students, who were all selected through a process of tests.
With the team complete towards the end of May, 2018; the story development kicked off as all the students went through several brain storming session to come up with story ideas conforming to the theme.
Going back and forth with minor changes with the script we finally locked the story in place and thus, entered a new phase of character and environment design.
The character design was a tedious process that MAAC Chowringhee students went through starting with scrounging for reference and then chalk out a base design.
Which then went through close scrutiny, feedback and multiple levels of improvisations to reach the stage of finalization.
The same procedure was adopted for all the characters.
Till the end of July,2018 we were done with the designing process and ready to jump into 3d to build the whole movie.
Running parallel to the whole designing process was the storyboarding process.
Here a small group of students were being busy bees figuring out how the story is going to look through a camera.
MAAC Chowringhee students were busy in drawing and then redrawing all the shot angles, layouts and setting compositions.
With the basic animatics reference almost ready we took the plunge into 3d.
The software choice for the process was Autodesk Maya.
The students who were responsible for modeling started with the blocking process working their way one detail level at a time to develop the overall look of the model as true to the design sheet as possible.
Likewise, the environment was also being developed to suit the requirements of the design.
The mentors at MAAC Chowringhee were constantly guiding the students through valuable feedback to come up with the final models, which seemed to do justice to the initial design, although a few liberties were taken here and there to enhance the character’s design.
Substance painter was chosen as the go to software for the look and feel development of the textures.
September had kicked in till we entered this stage.
The students and the mentors had gotten a hang of the process till then and were able to work smoothly through it.
With the textures coming along and changing the overall look of the scenes, it really was started to feel alive.
As, for the rigging, it was coming along fast enough and we had decided for a stylized expression of the main characters, using a 2d style.
Somehow, the rigging process seemed to take longer than anticipated especially with skinning.
On the hand scene compilation with the necessary assets according to shot division started.
The necessary camera angles and the layout of the asset as per the storyboard was being done to maintain a seamless file management.
The files were being readied for the upcoming animation phase.
With everything set in place animation was started as soon as the rigging finished one character at a time.
MAAC Chowringhee student team prioritized the character rig requirement as per the number of scenes it was in.
November was already round the corner, till then and we realized the urgency of the situation.
The process picked up pace as soon as this realization dawned on us.
Each scene was broken down into various required elements to facilitate the upcoming compositing process.
It was like all three processes of skinning, animation and lighting were going on simultaneously.
But the process could go on almost smoothly with the already done file management.
Well, that saved the hassle of working and reworking the wrong files, which is common in such scenarios.
MAAC Chowringhee team tried to set up a basic light before the animation and then refine it once the animation was complete.
Meanwhile, rendering had already occupied quite a few machines leaving just enough to animation.
With the deadline of the 24FPS Animation awards looming in front of the student team, all MAAC Chowringhee student team could then was to wait for the machines to render the files before rushing to composition.
Soon enough, the rendered files became available and so, were the machines as animation reached it’s final stages.
Compositing seemed trivial in compared to the whole experience we lived these few months.
But, it was not to be taken lightly as the overall look depended heavily on how well the various elements were composed together.
Nonetheless, MAAC Chowringhee student team lived through it and the output was good.
Taking this as a good sign student zealously jumped into compositng as fast as they could and also as fast as the renders came out.
The mentors at MAAC Chowringhee, continuously suggested methods to speed up the process.
By end of November finally team managed to put it all together for the final submission.
The students and mentors alike heaved a sigh of relief as the time flew by so fast to even barely take notice.
MAAC Chowringhee student team were awarded with a Jury Special Mention Award at 24 FPS International Animation Awards, 2018 in recognition of the hard work we put in.
And now, are proudly nominated for the Lift-Off Film Festival London, 2019.
What a beautiful start of a new year could it be.
Inspired by the dedication and perseverance of MAAC Chowringhee students and faculties it is indeed a very proud moment for team MAAC Chowringhee.
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