Our first session into personal branding had us look at some examples (good and bad) of how some real-world people present themselves for hire. We also scrutinised the finer details within companies' job adverts, what they might mean, and how to know the company is right for you.
We looked first at http://www.glyndavidson.co.uk/default.php. I initially found it quite intriguing, that the individual who owned this website claimed to be a designer, yet seemed to have made their webpage title using word art. Upon further digging in class, we found out the website hadn't been updated since 2013, around which time, Mhairi informed us, that those kinds of shiny metallic titles were cool. They demonstrated a range of good CGI work in their showreel, as well as the process for making it, which is important when considering CG work, as making a rig function well is just as essential as making the model look good. The showreel was also a good length (if you stopped before the final credits which take up a third of the reel), and they have effectively positioned their work throughout the reel, with their better stuff first. The rest of the website was complex, full of lots of text throughout an odd structure. It seemed they wanted to showcase more than a portfolio, including things like a demonstration page, and made the website cluttered. They at least put their showreel on the home page, making it the first thing you see, which would then allow a user to explore the rest of their website having seen what is arguably one of the more important details.
We then looked at http://www.davidmattock.co.uk/. Who had a modern looking website, devoid of shiny metallic 3D letters. They highlighted key words throughout a kind of introductory paragraph, perhaps making it easier to pick out if this person had the set of skills you were searching for, as well as contact details… They don’t have a showreel on the homepage, but a fairly obvious link to a couple showreels showcasing different techniques. At first glance I thought the link was an ad probably because of the inclusion of ‘Click here’ in big red letters, and although I still think it looks like an ad, I don’t think the link is entirely unnecessary. I think it would have made more sense to put a showreel showcasing what you would want to make for people on the homepage, along with the present description, and to put the other showreel in a gallery, along with other work, which would make the process of considering them for work less hassle.
For homework we were tasked with finding 3 or more job adverts we thought we might apply for in the future, or were at least be relevant to us.
Company: Anthony Z Studio
Job description: The position offers an opportunity to work directly with the world's leading advertising agencies and top-tier film directors providing creative services including storyboards, illustration, concept art and animation.
Ideal for artists and recent illustration, animation or film production graduates, who prefer a secure full-time position in a fast-growing company with career prospects instead of the erratic lifestyle or a freelancer.
Working with a friendly, driven, experienced team from a bright, spacious, modern office in Grand Union Studios near Portobello Road in North Kensington, West London.
The position includes extensive in-depth training adapted to the specialized area of visual development for motion pictures and advertising.
As someone potentially graduating next year (I don’t want to make assumptions), this job ad seems to ask for a lot of the criteria I will fit in, as a graduate who would preferably be animating. The idea of being a freelancer greatly appeals to me, but I also believe there is always room for improving, and one of the best ways to improve would be in an environment like the studio presenting the advert. The job advertises animating, and editing animatics as part of the position responsibilities, yet I can’t find either of these things on the company’s website, which makes me think those specific areas might be new in their production, whereas they are clearly experienced with storyboarding, and concept art. I think being an animator at my level in a company that is new to animating could be both a good, and a bad thing. A lot of the responsibility would fall on me as one of the possibly few people who animate for the studio, but perhaps the animators would have more leeway, and I could improve as the projects that require animation become more ambitious.
Company: Team17 Digital Ltd
Job description: We are on the lookout for a talented and passionate individual to join our talented and dedicated Art team as a Junior Animator.
Reporting To the Head of the Art Department / Principal Animator you will be working side by side with programmers, designers, other animators, artists and production staff to produce game animations.
I was pleasantly surprised to find this job advert, or I would be if I was actually looking for a job. The company advertising the position specialises in making video games, and has created many of the games I enjoy, which I think indicates that maybe I would thoroughly enjoy working there. If I had to specialise in something, I would want to work in a 2D medium, but I find myself constantly drawn back to, and fascinated by 3D, which I continue to work on whilst producing 2D work. If I was able to produce some work in 3D for a showreel, I think there could be a real chance that I might be accepted for a position like that, or at least I like to think they’d consider me, because that kind of junior position would really fit the bill after graduating.
Sun Creature are one of my favourite smaller studios, who upon researching have produced a lot more than I originally thought, and for some pretty large franchises, as well as for themselves. They don’t advertise a specific position, but I would love to be a part of the work they produce, which really fits my interests and styles. They also seem like a pretty pleasant bunch to be around, having seen them in interviews and the sort.
Company: Plug-in Media
Job description: Plug-in Media is looking to find a Junior Artist to come and work in our busy studio in the heart of central Brighton. We have a full slate of diverse and exciting gaming as well as animation projects across several platforms. We are looking for some extra support across these projects.
Plug-in Media is a quadruple-BAFTA winning production studio with a reputation for producing work of the highest quality. We make games, apps, animation and interactive experiences for an enviable international client list consisting of the biggest names in entertainment both across the UK and in the USA. Our busy studio has a positive and cheerful atmosphere, where everyone’s voice is heard. It’s true to say that while everyone here works hard, we all have a lot of fun doing it!
We looked at this job advert as an example in class, but the job description appealed to me. Upon further investigation, however, it seems the target audience for all aspects of production, linear, and interactive, are a younger audience. Whilst the company seems very enthusiastic, and would probably be an alright atmosphere to in, I don’t think the work they produce is particularly my cup of tea. That being said, again, if I had few options, this might be a decent place to gain experience.
Company: West Pier Studio
Job description: We are looking for a 2D Artist / Illustrator to join our Slots and Casino team. Working on our latest games, you will collaborate daily with other artists and developers and be responsible for creating a wide variety of digital artwork, ranging from environment and character art, logos and UI elements from concept to final implementation.
This is an excellent position for an experienced or aspiring 2D Artist. The role is ideally suited to a freelancer prepared to work within our office. Full-time / permanent position may also be available to the right candidate.
I thought this job looked quite interesting, as whilst I do not necessarily condone gambling (which this company seems to endorse), it seems the art department have a wide variety projects they get to create for, in a wide variety of styles and techniques, which could prove interesting and dynamic. I don’t think the job would at all be something I would want to stay in for a particularly long time, but I can imagine with no other options, this being a fairly OK job.