Category: Aju Mohan

AnimSchool Interview: Aju Mohan, Part 2

We would like to welcome back 11 Second Club September winner, Aju Mohan. How did you come up with the idea for your “Audition” shot?

If you see my August entry, I did more serious stuff with the dialogue, so I wanted to do something entirely different this time. But, the September dialogue was also too serious, which had me confused for a while. As I was racking my brain for ideas, my dear friend and colleague, Teju Alosyius, pitched me an idea of character doing an audio dubbing in a studio. From there I developed the idea of “Audition.”

Tell us about your planning process and what type of reference you used?

My planning for this shot was pretty straight forward.  I did lots and lots of thumbnails. I wanted to capture the correct expression and feeling in the intial planning stage itself. I researched a lot of audition videos from you-tube and that helped me immensely.

You were able to create an unique look to your entry to make it stand out. What process did you use to achieve this look?

From the initial stage itself I wanted to do something different visually. I was looking at some French 2D animations and wanted to achieve that feel. But, I’m not that much of a drafts man. So, I did the animation using Maya in 12fps, exported the play-blast, and drew on top of every frame so that I could maintain the volume. For rendering, I used the normal surface shader and imported it into a compositing software and merged all the layers. I did a video of my work in progress.

Lastly, where are you working now, and what are you working on next?

I recently began working as an animator at DreamWorks Dedicated Unit India. On my personal time, I’m concentrating a bit more on my drawing skills. Hopefully I will come up with a 2D animated short-film in the near future.

Thank you Aju, for your time and for sharing your work.

AnimSchool Interview: Aju Mohan, Part 1

Today we would like to welcome Aju Mohan. First of all, congratulations on your September win for the 11 Second Club. Well done! Can you tell us a little about yourself and your animation background?

Thanks a lot for having me here. I’m basically a Mechanical Engineer. By the last semester of my degree, I got introduced to a guy who was working as an animator. I got to see some of his work and it blew me away!!

From that instance onwards, I knew that I wanted to be an animator. After finishing my degree course, I went straight to an Animation academy and enrolled myself.

When all my engineering friends were getting jobs and earning tons of money, I was drawing and animating my heart out. But I have to say, It was the best decision of my life!

11 second club entry, audition!! 🙂 from ajumohan on Vimeo.


Out of all the rigs out there, tell us why you chose AnimSchool’s modified Malcolm female rig for your animation, “Audition”?

It had been a while since I’ve animated anything at home, due to tight production schedule, so I wanted to try something out. I was hearing a lot about the Malcolm Rig from my colleagues and friends, and I thought I’d give it a try.  I was blown away by its flexibility, and I knew instantly, that Malcolm was the one for my shot!

Were there any challenges or difficulties you faced when using the rig, and if so, how did you overcome them?

Absolutely none. I used the Malcolm Rig before too (for my August entry). My only regret is I have not utilized its potential fully cause of lack of time!

You had many dramatic expression changes in your animation. Did the rig meet your expectations to push those expressions and get what you were looking for?

Yes, the Malcolm rig is fantastic for facial expressions, actually now when I look at my shot again, I think I could have pushed the expressions a bit more. But no worries.

In Part 2 of Aju’s interview, he discusses his planning process and how he created the unique look.