Nepali Times
Toontime in Kathmandu


TUNING TOONS: An animated production developed at Incessant Rain Animation Studio .
When US-based animator and film maker Mike Merell entered the doors of the animation studio, Incessant Rain Animation Studio (IRAS) in Kathmandu last month he was astounded by what he saw.

"There is an immense amount of talent here with great ideas," says Merell, "and with the infrastructure they are using, I see a lot of potential."

Merell was here to train the animators at Incessant Rain, which is headed by Kiran Joshi, a former Disney VFX Supervisor. Joshi had worked as Merell's supervisor on The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and had been trying to get his friend to come to Nepal to work with his animators.

US-based animator Mike Merell works with animator Loojaw Manandhar who specialises in character animation at IRAS.
With over 20 years of experience in both computer animation and live action, Merell has worked on animated films like Atlantis, Chicken Little and Gnomeo and Juliet. Working for 12 years at Walt Disney Feature Animation, he has helped transition Disney's 2D iconic characters, Ariel, Donald Duck, and Simba from The Lion King into the 3D for the theme park film Mickey's Philharmagic.

Merell worked closely with the animators at Incessant Rain for over two weeks, helping them particularly with character animation, which involves giving a character its unique personality. "Mike gave us a different perspective and helped us apply new techniques to give our characters more gravity," says animator Loojaw Manandhar.

Besides Merell, Joshi has invited art director Vaughn Wright, compositer Phillip Broste, animator Matt Onheiber and tracking supervisor Bryan Burger to share their inputs. Joshi says the present animation curriculum is poor in Nepal and that the instructors have limited knowledge of animation software and no production experiences. "So whenever possible, I try to bring in experienced animators," he adds, "we get inspired by them, and hopefully they get inspired by Nepal too."

Incessant Rain has played an important role in promoting animation industry in Nepal. The company set up shop in Nepal and has outsourced animation deals from Hollywood studios, working on projects such as Diwali with Mickey & Donald, Karate Kid 2, Zombie Land, Death At Funeral, Thirty Minutes or Less, Burlesque, Devil and Red. It was responsible for Nepal's first fully animated and indigenously-crafted commercial for Ace Development Bank's rhino campaign.

"There has been an increase in interest in animation but the market is still not ready for the high-end animation work," says Joshi. Quality animated products cost time as well as money and not many local companies are willing to invest. But Joshi is positive about the future, "We have the talent and the infrastructure, it is only matter of time."

See also:
Tooned in Nepal, PAAVAN MATHEMA
Animated adverts might just be the next big thing

Entering another dimension, PRANAYA SJB RANA
Nepal seeks to become world class in 3D animated film

Read also:
The road ahead, ASHUTOSH TIWARI
CEO of Nepal Investment Board will have to walk on a very tightrope during his tenure

A model hospital, BHRIKUTI RAI
Bir Hospital is recycling its hazardous waste and winning accolades

1. jhankri
I have heard a lot about this studio, where can one see their work?

2. Abha Suwal

go to youtube and search incessantrain animation studio... you will see few videos by incessant...


3. jhankri
yeah I did that, its just the two that are linked in the article. Is that all they have done?

4. nita
@jankri do you not see the list of work they've done in the article?

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)