VanArts caught up with several of our past graduates at the Spark Animation Festival in Vancouver, September 8-12, 2010. Here is what they had to say about the animation program and their professional careers.
Galen Fott - Founder, Bigfott Studio
"Although I had professional animation experience prior to attending VanArts, there is no way I would have been able to achieve what I've done without taking a year off to study there. While I took the 3D Animation program, the inclusion of classical animation principles, life drawing and animation history has been just as important in my career. This is absolutely essential for turning out animators who know where their art form comes from and where they might take it in the future."
Studio website: www.bigfott.com
Reika Nishio - 3D Effects Artist
"VanArts taught me not only software and techniques, but also how to be an independent artist as well as a team member. It was the school's studio-like atmosphere where I learned how to receive critiques and address them. Soon after I graduated from VanArts, I landed a job at CIS Vancouver and that experience led me to work on various feature films. After that I have worked at Image Engine, Prime Focus, and Anthem FX on numerous other projects for films and TV series, such as The Last Airbender, The Losers, Invictus, Angels & Demons, the Twilight series, and TRON: Legacy."
Reika's website: www.reikanishio.com
Reika Nishio on IMDB
Levi Ames - Animator @ Oktober Animation, New Zealand
"Ever since I was 6 years old I had carved in stone that I was going to work in the animation industry. No matter what direction the industry was going in, I knew I wanted to learn the craft of hand-drawn 2D animation first, and then pursue 3D animation. VanArts was able to deliver beyond my hopes and dreams on both parts. Thanks to the extraordinarily talented instructors there, my understanding and skill for animation blossomed before my very eyes. In our first week, my first year instructor told us to keep our handouts as the year progressed, so we wouldn't forget the basic principles as our careers moved forward. I took that notion to heart, and to this day I still have all of my VanArts handouts organized into an animation bible, always referring back to it.
VanArts taught me to work hard and pursue my dreams, and I thank them for all they have provided for me. It truly has been a fantastic experience."
Levi's Blog: leviames.blogspot.com