Ad land’s Young Guns: Ria Concessao, Supari Studios
Ria Concessao joined Supari Studios fresh out of college in 2016, and is currently a Creative Producer at the company, having worked with several large brands, such as Google, Red Bull, Amazon Prime, YouTube, Asian Paints and Dolby, to name a few. While pursuing a mass media course from K.C. College, Mumbai, Concessao found her passion for filmmaking and storytelling. In her three years of experience in the digital industry, she has worked on projects that have ranged from digital commercials to travel shows to feature length documentaries.
How did you get into the role you are serving?
One thing I always knew was that I wanted to do something in a creative industry. I picked a mass media course in college, where we had to make films for almost every class project. I began experimenting with storytelling and it was like a natural extension.
In my second year of college, I came to Supari Studios as an intern and that’s when I was exposed to the entire world of filmmaking at a much larger scale. As an intern, I learnt about everything from how to use a camera to managing shoots to editing to graphic designing – the works!
However, as a creative producer, I get to be involved in all aspects of a project; strategy, creative and execution, as well as lead the team to the finish line. Delivering a project that is in line with the client’s requirements and is a creative output that we’re proud of, is what excites me the most.
What particular skill sets do you think you bring to the table?
Content consumption patterns have changed and brands are now making a conscious decision to engage with the Gen Z and Gen Y audience online. Being a part of Gen Z is a definite advantage, as it puts me in a place to push forward narratives that we relate to. We’re a self-aware bunch, who won’t accept any fluff and making sure we meet that filter is one of my biggest contributions to the organisation.
As an individual, I’d like to believe that I’m a people’s person and that’s always helped me build teams that are right for a particular project. Further to this, it’s important to facilitate an environment to push ourselves to innovate and experiment and take it to the next level.
With every project comes a unique challenge – budgets, timelines, creatives. It’s always exciting to not only use previous learnings, but jam with the team to find a coherent solution in between the chaos. (Pro tip: A little jugaad also goes a long way!)
How did Supari Studios come about?
I had heard about Supari from a family friend and when I checked it out, the work was crazy!
My internship was a super intensive 2-month programme, where I learnt almost everything under the sun (about filmmaking) and bonded with the entire team. Even once college resumed, I would keep coming back and help around with shoots.
On the day of my last paper, I stepped out of the examination hall and had a missed call from Manoti Jain, COO at Supari Studios, who was my mentor at Supari during my internship. I called her back and she asked me to check my email IMMEDIATELY! I was in complete shock when I saw the offer letter to join them full-time and be an official part of the Supari family. I called her right back and accepted and we all yelled in excitement for a good 5-7 minutes!
From then to now, it’s safe to say that we’ve worked on some crazy projects and put out lots of great content and will continue to do so.
Icons in this field you look up to and how they have influenced you and your work?
I’ve had multiple people influence me in a professional and personal aspect, but I’m narrowing it down to three.
Manoti Jain, who moonlights as my life mentor, is definitely one of them. People often say I’m a mini version of her and it feels great to hear that. The way she thinks and works is unbelievable. She always has an open ear to the problems I have and every solution is always backed with logic. The thing I love most about her is how passionate she is about her work.
My sister, Nicole Concessao, co-founder of Team Naach (although she isn’t technically from my field of work) found her calling and elevated the same with the power of the internet. She’s been able to connect, influence and inspire many individuals and create an impact through dance. Similar to what I intend to do with my storytelling.
Akshat Gupt, the CCO at Supari Studios, who directed his first film at the age of 21 and a year later, started Supari Studios, which serves as a platform for fellow young creators. He made us believe that it’s possible, if you put your mind to it and inspires us to do more and better every single day. Collaborating with him on a project is always an experience I look forward to; his style of storytelling is eccentric, infused with experimentation and there’s always so much to learn.
What are the five most productive things that you do in your everyday routine?
Start early: I get into office by 9:30 a.m. to make the most of my day.
Make a To Do List: It helps in staying focused, scheduling your day and getting things done. Also, the satisfaction of checking tasks off is something else!
Turn off app notifications: In a world where we’re glued to our phone screens, it’s easy to get distracted every time our phone lights up. Just avoid getting sucked into it and turn off notifications. It’s a much peaceful life!
Keep a tap on trends: About an hour of my day is dedicated to watching videos on Vimeo Staff Picks or reading the latest trends to be the first movers.
Most importantly, take time to do something other than work. It could be a dance class, a swim, a theatre workshop. Anything to keep your mind and body refreshed!
Do you think a career in this field is a viable one in the long term?
Definitely! Everyone has a screen in their pockets and they’re watching something or the other on it. It’s my job to make content that excites people and gets them talking about it.
So, till people are going to crave entertainment, I think we’re safe!
What does it take to succeed in a career?
I think perseverance is the key. Sometimes you get things in the first go, sometimes you fail multiple times before you even get close. You just need to keep giving it 100%.
What would be your advice to youngsters planning to enter this industry?
If filmmaking is what you’re passionate about, there couldn’t be a better time for you. Keep at it, work hard and more importantly, have fun while doing it.
Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?
Hopefully, heading a vertical of Supari somewhere in Australia!
Is there any organisation that you would like to work with in the future?
I’ve been at Supari ever since I’ve entered the industry and I don’t think there’s anywhere else I’d fit as well as I do here. The people, the culture, the work that we’re doing. It’s too good to be true. Everything I’ve learnt, I owe it to them and here’s to growing with them.