For the whole of last week, Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo, founder of Nafuna TV also known as Enqore was conducting a workshop entitled Angry Mwana Animation 101 Workshop with Enqore at Hypercube Tech.
Enqore’s Nafuna TV has provided Zimbabweans and those in Diaspora an alternative form of entertainment not found on traditional channels. Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo was recently named amongst the 20 innovative and entrepreneurial web adopters from across sub-Saharan Africa and was a semi-finalists for the Google’s Africa Connected prize.
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Below is an interview between this writer and Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo in which we spoke about the Africa Connected competition, the animation industry in Zimbabwe and much more.
Mobile Learning Zone : Firstly I would like to congratulate you for making it into the Africa Connected competition finalists early this year. How did that competition eventually end?
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo : Thank you! It was great to make it into the top ten and to get an award from Google. In the end, I was awarded $10000 by Google as well as a Google mentor who will help us improve our start up over the next 6 months!
Mobile Learning Zone: Secondly I would like to congratulate you again for successfully completing the Angry Mwana Animation 101 Workshop you were conducting at Hypercube Tech Hub over the past six days. What’s your general comment on how this workshop went.
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo :The workshop went really well. It was great collaborating with the Hypercube Tech Hub team and the participants where really hungry to learn. It’s possibly one of the best workshops I’ve done to date.
Mobile Learning Zone: Were the participants able to have a sound working knowledge that can help them do good animations after these six days?
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: We had enough time to cover all the fundamentals of animation. We had two great projects to work on as case studies as well as bring guest lecturers such as Claire Dongo, a seasoned animator from Zimbabwe though based in South Africa.
Mobile Learning Zone: For the sake of some readers who don’t know what Angry Mwana is can you please briefly explain what it is?
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: Angry Mwana is the first animated Zimbabwean viral series. They are 30 second animations staring angry Mwana, a belligerent and opinionated character.
Mobile Learning Zone: Can you share with us the state of the animation industry in Zimbabwe? How big is the industry and market.
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: We are still growing the industry. It’s still very small. I intend to train a 100 animators by the time this year is over. Animation is a team sport. We need more animators!
Mobile Learning Zone: The recent Global and China Animation Industry Report, 2012-2015 made startling revelations that the output value of global animation industry has reached US$222.8 billion, and animation-related derivatives have exceeded US$500 billion. How can animation contribute significantly to our national economic fortune.
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: Those numbers don’t surprise me at all. For the longest time, two of the world’s top three grossing movies are animated. Animation is the best medium for connecting with an audience. I feel if we grow the industry correctly, we would be able to contribute to the national GDP.
Mobile Learning Zone: What makes economic sense for the country between either making our own animations from scratch or to outsource our animation content to Asia especially China which has become the biggest producer of animations.
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: Technology has allowed us enough access into the animation pipeline. We can easily produce our own content. It’s not a question of the country being unable to produce animation, we can build that capacity. The animation industry itself will be reliant on several other industries to work. As we all begin to organize ourselves in overlapping areas like TV, Film and entertainment, we will begin to see improved animations and ideas.
Mobile Learning Zone: I saw about three ladies who were attending your animation workshop. Are there many women in the animation industry in Zimbabwe and what’s your message to women who want to join the animation industry?
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: There are so few female animators in Zimbabwe to begin with. In several case studies in Walt Disney and animation studios in Asia, women play a huge role in animation there. I wish the same to be true in Zimbabwe! All the lady animators I know are totally amazing at what they do.
Mobile Learning Zone: What are the three most important things that you’ve done to get yourself where you are today?
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: I’m not too sure if I can narrow them down to 3 but it would be; (1) Learning time management techniques (2) Learning Polyphasic sleeping technique and (3) Dedicating lots of hours to learning the trade.
Mobile Learning Zone: What do you do to keep improving?
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: I dedicate at least an hour a day to learning something new or improving what I already know. I have a personal curriculum that I follow strictly.
Mobile Learning Zone: I have seen a number of your videos and they are really interesting and of top quality. Where do you get your ideas from?
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: When it comes to music videos, the song has to resonate with me. That’s where I get my inspiration from.
Mobile Learning Zone: When will you conduct another workshop similar to the recent one you carried out at Hypercube Tech Hub
Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo: I will probably do one day events in the meantime so I can focus on some of the studio projects.
This article was written by James Mlambo and was first published on Mobile Learning Zone.
One thought on “Interview: We need more animators says Nqobizitha Enqore Mlilo”
I’m glad people like Enqore and Solo are using their success and experience to help grow animation in zim. Knowing that there is an actual, viable career path will make a huge difference to those who have a passion for animation but no idea how to go about it (knowing is half the battle! Yo Joe!). For those looking for like minded local people in animation and comics of various skill levels, training and big ambition, visit and maybe join this group https://www.facebook.com/groups/zimbabwecomicbookconvention/ Lets build this industry frame by frame!
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