Get Your Head Right

Just recently one of my students who graduated at the end of last year emailed me about the nervousness he was feeling before applying for work. Ive adapted my response as a post and added it to the Advice For Students resource section of the ARC. Hope it helps :)


frank said...

You might not get your dream job straight away. And anyway that job is just a dream.

So try for a job in games, if they are the jobs that are being advertised, even if you think you are a character animator that should be at Pixar.

Try for a job in 3D animation, even though you dream of creating a traditional 2D masterpiece.

Keep animating, is such GOOD ADVICE. But it can be hard to achieve on your own. So do what I did, get involved in a project or collaboration where other people are relying on you (other animators, a producer etc), it's great motivation for animation. Even if the project folds, you have been animating, you've met people in the industry, you might even score a good job reference.

So keeping on animating doesn't mean just sitting down alone at your computer. If you are gregarious, get out and collaborate!

Ian said...

Frank I think there is a bit of a generation gap at play there, think of the other students you studied with. For them a job in games is just as likely to be the dream as any other animation.

You really do have to stop thinking of it as a compromise, its different, are you too long in the tooth to cope ;P

Also I think it shows a little naivety about the industry in general. Compromise is everywhere, it is in TV and Film just as much as Games, its part of having a job. It is the symbiotic duel between art and commerce. Its what we turn up to be a part of, it is inevitable as soon as you expect to be paid for your animation, its is it! The game! The Thing! Animation! To be a part of it is not a compromise or something to settle for, its the game. I say bring it on.

The rest of your advice here is good, as long as you are actually producing, sitting around with others and talking about animation doesn't count.

frank said...

Ahhh Ian. Just a slight misinterpretation of what I was trying to say.

Don't get me wrong, I do like stirring things up, but this time it was unintentional.

I could have, and maybe should have written, "So try for a job in games" as: So try for a job in animation in any field, if they are the jobs being advertised...

I was trying to say, don't hold out for your dream job. Jump in and keep animating.

I think I've learnt that being an animator allows many possibilities in different areas and a "full" career would be trying all the options that present and learning from the animators that are there.

'Symbiotic duel'? That's an oxymoron very nicely placed.

Ian said...

'Symbiotic duel' - Frank Oz :)

When it comes to your first animation job, anything is your dream job.

Lets never fight again Frank, I love you man.

Well..... maybe some passionate debates ;)

frank said...

Here's a quote from an interview with newly graduated (from Animation Mentor)animator Tim Granberg after he landed a job with Rhythm and Hues:

"But I still believe the reason to compete each month (in the 11 Second Club) is not to be seen, but to provide some incentive to do the work. If you watch my reel, you'll see that I have three of my 11 Second Club entries on it. I think there may only be two AnimationMentor pieces on it. The simple reason for that is in the six months since I graduated, I have continued to animate, and have therefore gotten better. It's funny that I went through AM to become a better animator and get a great demo reel, and now almost all of the work I did while enrolled has already been replaced."

frank said...

"I still advise you to do as much animation as you can. Because of my schedule, I was only able to find about 3 hours a day to animate, but that time adds up quickly. Even if you don't think you're getting better, you will absolutely will be getting faster. The faster you can work, the more animation you can produce, and in turn the better you will get, and so on, and so on. Like most things, it has nothing to do with natural talent or ability, is has everything to do with practice, and perhaps a little luck." Tim Granberg