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This Apeejay alumnus’ work got recognition in Shark Tank India

Designer Debdyuti Mukherjee shares, “I was so happy that we got recognition at an all-India level.”



Apeejay alumnus Debdyuti Mukherjee wears many hats. He is an animator, video editor, graphic designer, who loves to explore the world with different perspectives. Having completed his  B.Design Degree (Animation and Multimedia) from Apeejay, the 24-year-old designer/animator possesses expertise in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Premier Pro, Animate, Maya, to name a few. 

Currently, Debduti is working as an Animator and Video Editor with VideoHi, a film making firm which diversifies into 360-degree brand communication. Previously, the Apeejay alumnus has also been associated with brands such as Nykaa, Auli Lifestyle, Amazon, Purplle, Vanity Wagon, Smytten, and Kindlife. In this candid interview, Debdyuti shares about his stint with Auli Lifestyle, a skincare line that blends Ayurveda and modern science, that came on Shark Tank India, Season One.  

Read edited excerpts:

Tell us briefly about yourself, your educational background and professional journey so far?

I was shy as a kid since childhood. But I loved painting, playing cricket, and watching cartoon series on television. These hobbies together inspired me to explore a career in design and animation. After completing school, I started to shortlist top design colleges to pursue a course in design. Fortunately, I was selected by Apeejay Institute of Design (AID), which has been among the premier design institutes in the country and that opened the door for my design venture ahead. Eventually, I moved to Delhi, 1450 kms away from home, and that was challenging for me. But I coped up with the hustle. I learnt different design tools including Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Premier Pro, After Effects, to name a few. During my 3rd semester, I enrolled myself in the photography competition, where my pictures were awarded first position. 

Apeejay provided us with an opportunity to evolve. Each project I worked on gave me a broader sense of  scripting, storyboarding, animating, editing videos, etc. At the end of 6th semester, Covid-19 hit, which disrupted our ending days leading to studying from home. 

After completing college, I got an internship offer at Auli Lifestyle as a Graphic Designer in Kolkata. I worked hard, learnt and explored different aspects of designing. After a few months, I was promoted as the Lead Designer to take charge in every aspect of branding. I worked endlessly to meet requirements with my team which paid off when our company got listed at the first season of Shark Tank India and we got a whopping amount of funding from Miss Namita Thapar, CEO of Emcure Pharmaceuticals. I was so happy that we got recognition on an all India level. 

What inspired you to pursue a career in design? Why specifically animation?

I have had a knack for painting since childhood. Born in Kolkata, a city of rich heritage and culture, I used to look for inspiration everywhere around me. Movies like Spiderman, TV series like Kiteretsu invoked a spark in me to try animation. Animation for me is an art that can perform actions and scenarios here, which we cannot do in real life. I perceive it as a very powerful tool to inspire, educate, and stimulate one’s creative intelligence. 

How did you start preparing for this journey?

After completing school, I decided to pursue a Bachelor in design course in animation and multimedia. It happened all of a sudden.

What are some of the skills one must focus on nurturing if planning to pursue a career in the animation industry? 

One should always be acquainted with drawing, sketching and colouring on paper. As one nurtures the above-mentioned skills, it helps visualise animation. Another one is, a person has to be habituated with the latest softwares and trends in the industry. Third, one has to be dedicated, organised and patient. Animation is not something which is created overnight. It takes time and hard work to achieve a good result.

According to you, with the integration of AI , what are the two key trends in the animation industry?

With the integration of AI, we are seeing mixed animation, a blend of 2D and 3D, which is a unique form of animation that generates an aesthetically breathtaking, detailed work of art. It offers greater versatility with respect to dynamic camera angles, a different artistic flair which will attract the viewers. Second one is blurring the line between animation and reality, which is known as hyper-realism. The industry is working on every minute detail in animation that brings out the perfection and is really eye-catching.

What has been your learning experience in Apeejay? Where do you see yourself in the coming future?

I had a great learning experience at Apeejay, growing up with such professional veterans of the industry. We did lots of projects and assignments, the best part was they used to “bring out the best” in us. Another key part was their guidance throughout the journey, whenever we were stuck, we discussed our problems, and perceived the right way to solve them. Last few years, we researched, solved problems on our own, which is where I am standing today.

I see myself developing, learning, creating so that I can contribute a significant part in the industry.

You have worked with e-commerce beauty brands. What skills one needs to develop to be part of this industry ?

In my years at Auli Lifestyle as a graphic designer, I have worked for various e-commerce portals like Amazon, Nykaa, Purplle, Vanity Wagon, Smytten, etc. One has to think beyond boundaries to create a design that represents the brand identity as well as a neat and clean perspective of the product. Creativity and visual communication are the key skills of this industry.

Harshita is Assistant Editor at Apeejay Newsroom. With experience in both the Media and Public Relations (PR) world, she has worked with Careers360, India Today and Value360 Communications. A learner by nature, she is a foodie, traveller and believes in having a healthy work-life balance.

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