Gitanjali Rao is an Indian animator, filmmaker and theatre artist. She graduated as an applied artist in the year 1994 from Sir. J. J. Institute of Applied Arts, Mumbai. She started her animation career in the year 2006 with the film, ‘Printed Rainbow’. Printed Rainbow won many awards like Small Golden Rail, the Young Critics Award at Critics Week section at Cannes in 2006 and Kodak Short Film Award. The films have also won the Golden Conch for Best Animation Film at the Mumbai International Film Festival in the year 2006.
The two animated short movies produced and directed by her, ‘Printed Rainbow’ and ‘Orange’ has won 28 awards. She has been the jury on various festivals such as the 2011 Cannes Critic’s Week short films jury. In 2013, along with Neeraj Ghaywan, Vasan Bala, Anubhuti Kashyap and Shlok Sharma, and producer Anurag Kashyap, Gitanjali directed a segment in ‘Shorts’, a compilation of five short films. Her animated short film, ‘True Love Story’ was one of 10 selected short films at Critics’ Week at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival.
Shilpa Ranade is a very well known animator, illustrator, filmmaker, Indian designer, and academician. After her S.S.C, she decided to join Sir. J. J. Institute of Applied Arts, Mumbai. There she specialized in Illustration and Video. She was so keen on studying animation that she pursued her M.Phil in Animation at the Royal College of Art in London after her graduation. After receiving her masters, she worked under known Indian animator, ‘Ram Mohan’ as an intern. After that, she went to work as a filmmaker at the TATA Institute of Social Sciences for two years.
In the year 1996, she produced her first animation film ‘Mani’s dying‘. This film was based on a Kosala which is a 1960s pioneering Marathi novel. This film won the Critics Award at Bombay International Short Film Festival in 1996. After that, she produced many films like The Harvest, The Childhood of Krishna, and Naja Goes to School.
The movie that gained her popularity was her full-length feature film, ‘Goopi Gawaiya Bagha Bajaiya’. This movie won Best Artwork at 18th International Children’s Film Festival of India in 2013, Best Professional Animated Feature Film at ASIFA Awards India in 2013, Animation Award at The WIFTS Foundation International Visionary Awards in 2013, Best Indian Animated Feature Film at FICCI BAF Awards in 2014. Since 2001, she has been a faculty at Industrial Design Centre in Mumbai.
Dhvani Desai is an International and Indian award-winning animation filmmaker. She is not only an animator but also a poet. In the year 1991, she entered the field of animation. She worked in a computer animation studio as a trainee where she learned 2D animation. Later, she joined Xavier’s Institute of Communication in Mumbai where she took formal training in 3D animation. After this, she joined Computer Graphiti before establishing her own animation studio ‘Metamorphosis’ in Mumbai.
She worked as an assistant director on the sets of the film, ‘The Mahatma’ which was produced by the Mahatma Gandhi Foundation. In 2001, the film was selected at the Tehran International Animation Festival and also at the Mumbai International Film Festival. Her first individual film as a director and producer was ‘Manpasand – The Perfect Match’. This movie was screened three times at the 9th Hamburg Children’s Short Film Festival. At the 2008 New York Festival’s Film and Video Awards, ‘Manpasand – The Perfect Match’ won a Bronze World Medal in the Home Video – Children’s Programmes category.
Vanitha Rangaraju Ramanan is an Indian animator who graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture from the Regional Engineering College, Tiruchirappalli. She pursued her masters from the University of Texas at Austin. After that, she did her internship from the Industrial Light & Magic in 1998. Since then she has been working with the DreamWorks Animation.
Some of the noticeable movies where she has contributed as an animator are Shrek 2, Madagascar, Shrek the Third, The Boss Baby, Madagascar: Escape to Africa and Puss in Boots. She was also part of TV series such as Dragons: Riders of Berk, Scared Shrekless
Charuvi Agrawal is animator, filmmaker, painter, sculptor, and visual artist. She won a gold medal in fine art at the College of Art in Delhi. She completed her graduation in computer animation from Sheridan Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning in Canada. Charuvi developed a new technique “Claytronics”, where she uses clay to create humorous miniature 3D sculpture, each telling a topical story.
In 2009, she founded her own lab called ‘Charuvi Design Labs (CDL)’ which is a leading animation studio and design lab. In the year 2013, she directed an animation movie named ‘Shri Hanuman Chalisa’. It is a 3D animated short film which is a symbolic visual poetry of an ancient religious composition that has been sung and hymn across the globe. She created a 25ft Shri Hanuman Suspended Sculpture made of 26000 Bells.
Simdhuja Rajaraman is the youngest animator on the list. At the age of 14, she founded her own animation company named ‘Seppan’. By the year 2014, there were ten employees working with her at her company. She is the youngest CEO and 2D animator of India. Along with this, she is also a brand ambassador for ‘Corel’ software company. This company certified her Simdhuja Rajaraman as the youngest creator of digital cartoons.
This list shows that women are no less than men in any field. These women are making India proud worldwide. If you know any such women who have done some contribution in the field of animation, do let us know in the comment section below.