Saturday, April 17, 2010

'AVATAR' Animation comes to Indian Buddhists

Shakyajata writes with news of a coup at the Aryaloka Computer Institute - Triratna’s computer training institute for young Dalit Buddhists, located in Nagpur, central India.  She says -
Aryaloka's Seminar on Animatoiin
“An extraordinary new phase in the development of the Aryaloka Computer Institute, Nagpur, India, took off at the end of February. Ben Lambert, an Animator and trainer from the prestigious Framestore Company in London, is a highly skilled 3-D modeller who has worked on Harry Potter, Sherlock Holmes, Avatar, and many other worldwide hit films.

“He visited Nagpur for 5 days of intense input, training the tutors and students of the Animation Course at A.C.I. in his skills, and running 3 public seminars for Aryaloka's benefit...he showed us how he does it, it's mind-boggling!

“Ben Lambert was with us due to the good offices of Sharon Reed, a Mitra who also happens to be a director of Framestore. Much gratitude to her. Ben's energy and enthusiasm, and caring and commitment, were very moving. He filled the days with sessions teaching the tutors and the students the hands-on techniques he specialises in, and was very impressed by how quickly they learned and how hard they worked. He even challenged himself with the HOTTEST of Indian food!...and was unfailingly friendly and kind.

“The public seminars were attended by present and potential future Animation course students, young people from local Art Colleges and Animation specialists...all were quite blown away by this behind-the-scenes exposition of how it is done at the top of the profession.

“The students learning Animation at the A.C.I. come from marginalised communities, from all parts of India, and are committed to implementing Dr Ambedkar's vision of a 'Peaceful Revolution'; a just society free of caste prejudice, based on ethics and compassion. They have suffered much discrimination and poverty in the past, and most of them are supported on the course by charitable donations.

“Their Animation training will help to give them earning power; also many of them want to use their skills to develop materials to spread the message of Buddhist values that will give dignity and hope to their communities. On Ben Lambert's final evening, with much satisfaction and glee, the first TBMSG Buddhist comic was launched, which the students and their teachers have's great, watch out for it! (available in English from, in Hindi from ) Profits from this will support students from poor families on the next course.

“So, Ben Lambert's visit was like something from another world....boosting the reputation of Aryaloka Institute and the future opportunities of young people from very poor backgrounds...and best of all, he has promised to CARRY ON training them through assignments and feedback, and wants to come again! Thank you Ben, thank you Sharon, thank you Aryaketu who set all this up, thanks to the young trainees and tutors too, you are the real stars”.


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