Celambarasan Ramasamy who’s part of the graphics team working on How To Train Your Dragon 2

He is just 27 and his name can be spotted in the credits of movies such as How To Train Your Dragon, Kung Fu Panda 2, Megamind, Puss In Boots and The Croods. A student of Chettinad Vidhyashram and SSN College of Engineering, Celambarasan Ramasamy, despite being offered a job during a campus interview, spent a year and a half mastering computer graphics.

Following this, he pursued his Masters at Clemson University, U.S., in 2009, eventually landing a job in DreamWorks. “Ever since, it has been an exciting roller coaster ride in the world of animation and computer graphics. DreamWorks is in the process of changing over to NextGen systems and I am happy to be a small part of this movement. Their forthcoming India-specific project is Monkeys of Bollywood, which has music by A. R. Rahman. As for me, I am currently part of the team that is working on How To Train Your Dragon 2, scheduled to hit the screens next year,” informs Celu, as he his known among his workmates at DreamWorks.

After completing his Masters, Celu came on a short visit to India during which he went to his hometown Namakkal, when an idea struck him. “Having spent a major portion of my growing up years in a remote village near Namakkal I wanted to recreate the stillness and beauty of that life for others to experience. I was experimenting with 3D Audio for a few years to understand the level of immersion the medium can deliver. In the process, I realised the potential of 3D Audio to deliver a unique storytelling experience to the audience, that enhances the process of reading a novel,” says Celu.

When Celu came to Chennai he networked with his friends, actor Rishi Raj, Arul Oli and a few others, and recorded a play he had written and directed. “An experimental media project, it was designed to be an immersive 3D audio listening experience that would transport the listener to a different time and space. The first play in the Mind Theatre series titled Stories That Fade With Time (30 minutes) is set in a Tamil Nadu village. It highlights the intricacies of a father-son relationship. The dialogues in Tamil get translated in real time into English in order to take the story to a worldwide audience. This project is a collaboration of an international team of artists, including Cassandra Leopold and David Williams,” says Celu.

Inspiration

Who is his inspiration at DreamWorks? “DreamWorks Animation is headed by Jeffrey Katzenberg. It’s a great learning experience to see him commandeer one of the largest animation studios in the world,” says Celu whose parents Dr. K. Ramasamy, a retired Professor, and mother, Leela, now settled in their farmhouse near Namakkal, were instrumental in encouraging him to pursue his dream.Besides his work at DreamWorks, Celu has directed commercials like the one for an iPad accessory, Comfe Hands.

Milestones

2009 - Fear3D, an animated 3D short film made as part of his thesis became the first ever film to be studied using eye tracking (a technique in which infrared cameras are used to track where people are looking at on the computer screen).

2010 - His thesis was published as a book titled, Student Production: Case Study of an Experimental Stereo CG Short Film.

2011 - The Mind Theatre project using 3D Audio.

2012 - He made the 'Create Happiness' video as part of a nonprofit campaign. The video managed to get more than 2.5 million views on YouTube and was featured on the front page of YouTube.

2013 - His work titled ‘Spatial Acoustic Synthesis' was accepted for a talk at the 134th Audio Engineering Society convention in Rome, Italy.

2013 – He is giving a presentation about the sand pile effect he developed for The Croods at SIGGRAPH Dailies at Anaheim, California.