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A Day In The Life Of An Animator

27 Aug 2020 | Suryansh Sharma, Animator

At 04:30 am, my alarm goes off. I wake up in my bedroom. Okay, fine. Guess that’s how “A Day in the life of..” works.

So, good morning!

Wait a minute, who titled this? Yeah, I’ll give you a glimpse of a day in the life of an animator alright, but just an animator?

I’m Suryansh. Yes, I’m an animator at Rasta, but truth be told, I wear many hats. A designer. A cross-city biker. A professional footballer. And most importantly, a punctualist. If that’s even a word. Well, I live a clockwork life, and sticking to timelines is my thing. You get the drift, right?

I like to imagine each day as a video game where each task is like a level I need to cross. Cross the obstacles of really bad feedback or hold hands with some really constructive feedback, find a reroute, win approvals, earn confidence boosts. And that’s how I level up every day!

Here’s a glimpse of that!

04:45 am - Time for my energy drink. Today, I’ll cover 50 kilometres in one and a half hours. On my bicycle. Just to get the wheels of my body in motion, you know. (the life of an animator bit kicks in pretty late, so hang in there!)

05:00 am - Feet on the pedal. Off I go. Delhi looks the prettiest at this hour. The hint of fog, the leaves rustling, the wind on my face. Nothing to interrupt my flow. An animator usually unwinds after his day’s work, but for me, it’s the other way round. It gets me ready for the day, helps me keep my calm working on the 47th iteration of that dratted product video. You know how it goes in an advertising agency.

07:00 am - These are not sweat-beads, these are just signs that I’m ready to face the day. Take a quick shower, grab some breakfast, and get ready to work on the iterations I received from the brand team last night.

08:00 am - Workstation’s all set up, ready to take the work for the day. The first task of the day - iterations on a static emailer banner. As an animator, this is supposed to be easy-peasy. But it’s not. The client’s super-picky about the selection of images. I take that as a lovely opportunity where I get to strengthen my design basics.

09:00 am - Video edits - yes, that’s the stuff that excites me the most. Just getting to tell a story in motion where I control the narrative. The closest I can feel to being a part of the videogame I was talking about earlier, you know.

10:00 am - The brand team has woken up. Now it’s time to toggle. Shift the gears and pace out the workflow. Enter the loop of rejections, reworks, feedbacks, and approvals. Bring it on!

11:30 am - Multitasking mode activated. Two screens. Two brands. Two stories. One author. That’s me! Everyone’s working on tight deadlines. Everything’s urgent. Sometimes, I just ask myself - is there a difference between important and urgent? I asked my brand folks too. But well, guess I’ll never know.

12:40 pm - I’m already hungry (I wake up at 4:30, remember?), but so is the brand team. And the clients too. Hungry for more creatives, more iterations. I’m not venting, this is my story every day. And I like to take it on with my chin up.

1:00 pm - Finally, I can get my lunch. Not all days are this lucky. There have been days where I’ve kept running without food. Not recommended. Fuel up, recharge and work towards closing projects.

1:30 pm - New brief. Ah! The joy. It’s like the excitement of being in a lush green field, but more about that later. This brief demands research. Let me dive into the depths of the web. Nothing more satisfying than watching what your peers around the world are doing.

3:00 pm - Slack notification - “Thanks Suryansh! The video has been approved. But there are 47 minor changes…” Well, my hours are 3-5 so I’ve got two hours to close it. More work incoming. Hop. Skip. Dodge. Push.

4:30 pm- Revised cut sent

5:00 pm- Approval. The sweet sound of approval. Put the final version to render. Put on your football jersey. For it’s time to start the second chapter of my day.

5:45 pm- I’m in the ground, and the referee’s whistle goes off. The adrenaline rushing in my veins. This is where this animator belongs, all animated. Dribble, shove, slide, score. That’s how it goes for someone who’s an animator by day and a professional footballer by night.

08:30 pm - Full-time - We won the first game today, but I got more fuel in me. Time for Match 2. The same adrenaline rush, different ground, against a different team. What a beautiful beautiful way to blow off steam!

10:00 pm - Connect with my playmates. Huddle up and catch up on everybody’s life. The calm of the night, and the warmth of conversations. The familiar voices, they stop to start again. It goes on. And on.

01:00 am- Finally back home. Still got 20% charge left. Sleep is not really my thing, you must’ve figured by now. Where’s my PS4? Let’s bring the games home.

02:30 am - Thanks for following me throughout the day. You’re in my bedroom again. I think this needs to stop now. I’ll get some shut-eye before facing another exciting day.

See you on the other side!

DISCLAIMER: These stunts are performed by a professional. Please try at your own discretion.