A class titled Project X started during my senior year at Cogswell College, where students could produce short animated films for college credit, and to boost a student's portfolio, with a faculty member acting as mentor. I was pursuing an animation track at the time, and was fortunate enough to work on Project X's first film, The Offering.
During the film's production I acted as lead animator. While the modelers and riggers worked to build the main character, the animator spent the first couple months researching traditional Indian dances used to depict the story of Parvati and Shiva. We developed a cheat sheet of traditional hastamudras (the beautiful hand gestures, and their meanings, common to Indian classical dance), and were lucky enough to have a traditional Indian dance choreographer to guide us throughout the three dance scenes depicted in the film.
Each of the three animators were assigned a different dance sequence, though the work was fluid and we all touched each other's work in small ways. Scenes were redone or modified throughout production, and now it's hard to remember exactly which scenes belonged to me.
This film's first showing was at Aniwow! 2009 in China, at our sister school, CUC. I was asked to represent Cogswell's student body and traveled over there for ten days with my animation teacher and Cogswell's president. I co-taught an animation master class to the CUC students and, did a presentation, and fielded questions, on how The Offering was made.
All in all, it was a great experience, and I am really glad to have worked on this project. It is hard to watch this film now because, while some scenes hold up well, there are others which are full of little things I've always wanted to fix, and still other scenes which could have been done better. I am lucky I was able to take part in a film with such amazing production values.