Nikhil Patil: The Wizard of computer graphics
Anusha Subramanian April 30, 2011He calls himself a self-discovered computer graphics, or CG, artist and believes in benchmarking himself against the best in the world. Shy to begin with, this suburban Mumbai boy opens up when it comes to showing some of his best work stored on his iPhone.
Hailing from a family of creative people, Patil's interest in advertising and computers started very early in his life. "I always knew I wanted to be in creative advertising," he says. When still in school in the early 1980s, Patil acquired his first electronic toy, a Sony Hit-Bit. He used it to create small graphic programmes using GW Basic, a programming language.
He pursued his passion for computers by enrolling for an animation course at the erstwhile Microcell Graphics. He also graduated as a Bachelor of Arts. After completing his animation course, he taught for a year, and then started out as a trainee at Digital Canvas, a post-production studio back in 1997. Building his client list and referral base from the ground up, he moved up the ladder, from becoming a senior animator and compositor to a partner in NutsScrewsAndBolts and finally the creative head of CG at the commercials department of Pixion, one of the leading post-production studios in the country.
Having worked on some of the best commercials such as the Videocon one, in which the whole idea was to embed the colours of nature into the TV ad, Patil explains that apart from tight timelines, post-production requires extensive research and refined detailing so that no one can tell the created work from the live shots.
Among his toughest challenges is convincing clients to do work in India rather than go abroad, Patil says. An environmentally conscious person, Patil prefers to use public transport rather than own a car.