Day one: Entrepreneurship Day
This was taken up by a number of seminars by the team from the careers section and guest speakers form the field of business. The first talk we had was from a practicing graphics designer while informative I feel that this section of the day was aimed, with a laser, at the graphics section of the art school than the rest of us, next came the worst part of the day a role play game called "Xing". I mean what a waste of time and money to produce, sure we need to how to start a business, but using something that is clearly designed and aimed at 15 - 17 year olds PLEASE !
The day ended with a double hit of "Pitching" and "Self Branding". The pitching was interesting but not as informative as I would have liked, compared to last years anyway, but the self branding talk was very informative as it made me realised how important the Internet is when going for new jobs or after potential clients.
I look forward to day two; Employability Day, as there are some interesting sessions scheduled that I plan to attend, including one on portfolio and CV writing for the artist.
Day Two: Employability Day
Well today I woke up in a positive mood for this was the one day of the week I was looking forward to, but what a surprise it was a big let down, I mean the first speaker just talked about how he used to be in a wheelchair and that he had worked for NASA.
This was followed up by a session with Thoughtful, on what an employer or client looks for in a CV and portfolio. I found this extremely useful, especially some key points such as:
- Find out which studio you want to work for - do your homework, who they are, what they do and why you should work for them.
- Start a dialog today - make contacts, make a list of five or six potential employers and send them an e-mail citing that you find their work inspiring.
- When the time is right send a short professional e-mail - with a PDF attachment with five to seven samples but no larger than 5Mb.
- If you don't get a reply with in 3 - 5 days give them a ring - do not just wait around for them to contact you be phone.
- Prepare an A3 size book style portfolio with 10 to 12 pieces of work, with attention to detail being paramount.
- Prepare for a 30 minute interview - but be aware it may only last 15 minutes, when you go in it is a nice idea to enquire as to how much time they have.
- Don't over stay your welcome - I know it seems dumb to mention that but when you are done pack up and go.
- Thank-you e-mail at the end - even if you don't get the job as it is always nice to stay in contact.
- never NEVER EVER give up.
Day three: Ask the Expert Day
This day was devoted to talks from experts, I started the day off with a talk from Tomfoolery Pictures about how to start a production company and not die trying, this session was aimed at the Creative Lens Media course, CLM, however I found it useful as it has introduced ideas of where I can start to display my work, and whys of making a name for my self in the animation industry as well as screen agencies in the local area. I then followed this up with a session by Chris Woodworth from TT games on stepping into the animation and computer games industry. This was interesting as it gave me further tips on how to get a job and what to do once I have a been employed, plus some interesting tips on what to put into my portfolio; Life Drawing - form and movement work, Character Sheets and some storyboards, but not to go more than 10 pages maximum and to have my contact details on both my DVD show reel and on the bottom of the sleeves with my work in.
He also gave me a collection of useful websites for animation:
- http://www.creativecrash.com - this is useful for models and rigged characters for use in Maya and they are free
- http://www.animationmeat.com - useful for tips on animating
- http://www.imageineanimation.net - is like the facebook for animation
- http://www.animationmentor.com - has useful tips and advice and if you sign up you can get resource information from the pro's in Hollywood
After lunch I partook in two sessions, the first was A life in design and the Arts - your creative carer paths, these session's were interesting, despite the technical probes they had with the DVD and the Internet connection, as they reinforced the importance of not giving up and making contacts with people in the industry.