Friday, May 6, 2016

I'm still alive!

It's been a very long time since I last posted anything on here, and I feel like it's about time I got back into it!  The past few years have been pretty crazy for me, so I thought that it might be a good idea to write a few posts about what I've been up to, if for no other reason than as a good reference for me to look back on.

 I moved out to Vancouver at the end of August 2013 to chase my dream of working as a professional animator.  I didn't really know many people in the Vancouver, and I didn't actually have a job lined up, but I knew that coming out to Vancouver would probably give me my best shot at getting into the industry.  So with the help of my fabulous parents, I packed up a (very full) van, and headed out on my way.

This is where I sat for 2.5 days.

I wasn't able to find a job in animation for the first couple of months I lived in Vancouver, so I worked part time at an arts and crafts store (where I probably spent the majority of my paycheque on art supplies myself, so it's a good thing that I wasn't there for very long...).  I was super fortunate to win an online webinar through Virtual Animators with the super talented Kathy Zielinski, which was a lot of fun and a huge source of inspiration for the short time that it lasted.  I was also going to a bunch of animation career fairs and networking events to try and get my foot in the door at the same time.

And spending a lot of time with one of my new roommates, Owen.

Around the end of October/beginning of November 2013, after applying to many different studios I finally got an interview at a studio called Nerd Corps Entertainment.  They offered me a position as an Animation PA (or basically a junior animator) working on one of their animated tv shows, and I was incredibly excited to actually get the opportunity to animate for a living.  The switch to a tv production schedule, after having a decent amount of time to work on shots in school was a bit of a shock to my system in the beginning, and I had to put in a lot of work and extra hours to stay on top of everything.  Having to do such a high quantity of animation in a short period of time really pushed me to be better and more efficient, and I got the chance to animate many different things in different shots. Nerd Corps also used Softimage XSI as their animation software, so I had the added challenge of learning a whole new program while trying to figure out how to work on an actual production.  I luckily had an incredibly talented and helpful team of people to work with and get help from, and I learned so much from them in my time there.  Over the course of the 2 years that I was at Nerd Corps (and later DHX Media after the company was acquired) I worked on 3 shows; Endangered Species, Slugterra and Kate and Mim Mim (with a very brief 2 weeks on one of the Monster High Movies).  I'll save the details about them for another post though!