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DesiToons 2023 witnesses insightful sessions exploring brands, technology and creativity

Sitting L to R: Saraswathi Vani Balgam, Ashish Kulkarni, Biren Ghose, Mike Yatham, Nagarjuna, Jayesh Ranjan and Nag Ashwin

DesiToons 2023 wrapped up with grandeur at HICC Hyderabad. An initiative by the Government of Telangana in association with Telangana VFX Animation and Gaming Association (TVAGA), the one-day conclave witnessed a massive footfall.

DesiToons is a one-day conclave within IndiaJoy. IndiaJoy is one of India’s largest expos to celebrate gaming and digital media and entertainment content. IndiaJoy was inaugurated by Telugu superstar Nagarjuna and Government of Telangana information technology, electronics & communications (ITE&C) and industries & commerce departments principal secretary Jayesh Ranjan. Nagarjuna expressed how overwhelmed and proud he was to witness the growth of IndiaJoy and the response it received from the people on the first day itself. Ranjan expressed how his government is taking efforts to turn Hyderabad into a major hub for the Indian as well as the global AVGC industry.

With a focus on indigenous IPs, various aspects of the Indian animation industry and the way forward, the DesiToons conclave saw a bustling gathering of students alongside delegates from the entire animation ecosystem; including studios, broadcasters, brands and technology companies. 

DesiToons 2023 was presented by Green Gold Animations. Sony Yay was on board as the gold partner, while Hornbill studio was the silver partner for the day-long event curated by Animation Xpress.

The event commenced with an engrossing panel discussion on Making Telangana the AVGC Capital of India. The speakers were: Image Center of Entrepreneurship Telangana COO Arjun Sarode, Powerkids Entertainment CEO Manoj Mishra, Rotomaker founder Madhav Reddy Yatham (Mike), Green Gold Animation CMO Bharath Laxmipati and Annapurna Studios producer & executive director Supriya Yarlagadda. The session was moderated by Punnaryug Artvision founder and FICCI AVGC Forum chairman Ashish Kulkarni.

The next session for the day was another panel discussion on the Indian Animation Industry: An Update. This session brought together industry leaders to dwell on the prospects of the Indian animation industry, the need of the hour and the way forward. Eminent personalities like Punnaryug Artvision founder and FICCI AVGC Forum chairman Ashish Kulkarni, Paperboat Design Studios founder and chairman Soumitra Ranade, Toonz Animation India Education Services executive director Sasikumar Raman Pillai, Reliance Animation Studios 3D Process production head Anand Pandey and MPC India ex- executive producer RK Chand . The discussion was moderated by founder, chairman and editor-in-chief Anil Wanvari.

Moving ahead, the audience witnessed a Fireside Chat on The Intersection of Advertising and Animation Content between ITC media & PR head Jaikishin Chhaproo, Green Gold Animation chief operating officer Srinivas Chilakalapudi and founder, chairman and editor-in-chief Anil Wanvari.

In the next segment, Hornbill Studios MD Ravi Kumar Kothapalli gave a presentation on Animation Industry – Opportunities and Approach for Evolution.

To throw light on IP Creation, another panel discussion took place with eminent personalities like philmCGI MD Anand Bhanushali, Zebu Animation Studios Art Director/Co-Founder Venky Ramanan, Green Gold Animation Project Portfolio Management VP Tom Walczak, DancingAtoms LLC CEO-creative director Saraswathi Vani Balgam, FICCI AVGC Forum co-chairman & Graphiti Multimedia founder Munjal B. Shroff. Powerkids Entertainment CEO Manoj Mishra was on board as the moderator for the panel. 

This panel was followed by an interesting Presentation on AI by Gamitronics CEO Rajat Ojha. After the session, Ojha moderated an in depth discussion on AI in Animation: Opportunities and Challenges. The speakers were: Charuvi Design Labs founder & creative director Charuvi Agrawal; Pixion ex-CEO, Gen VR co-founder, entrepreneur, advisor & investor Gitanjali Sehgal; Viga Entertainment Technology co-founder & CEO Vivek Reddy and Autodesk India & SAARCAutodesk India & SAARC M&E technical solutions manager Samit Shetty.

DesiToons 2023 also witnessed an interesting lineup of masterclasses which ran as a parallel track along with the main event. The first session was on Unleashing the Power of Unreal Engine: Animation Pipeline for Artists & Studios by Epic Games Solutions Architect Gaurav Mathur. He took the audience through the magical world of Unreal Engines and its immense potential.

The audience also got to rejig their creativity with Writing Animation – Breaking Barriers of Your Imagination session. Bragging Writes founder and creative head Praveen Fernandes conducted an interesting masterclass sharing marvelous tips and tricks of the trade.

Tiltedu L&D Specialist Akhilesh K S conducted an interesting session on Getting Started with Blender: An intro to Open Source 3D Design. This masterclass provided useful insights on how the tool can help in unleashing creativity. The event also witnessed various other panel discussions on topics like Karnataka Panel: Opportunities and Challenges and Kerala Animation & VFX Studios ShowCase, highlighting various local animation industries across India.

The final session for the day was XP Pen Workshop: Concept Art & 3D Character Creation – African Blacksmith Character Model. These sessions witnessed the participation of a curious young crowd. Listening to these professionals opened doors for them to understand the AVGC sector better.

Desi Toons concluded with AVGC 40 Under 40 awards, which is an initiative by AnimationXpress to honour the young talent for the contribution it has made to the AVGC industry.