Monday, 12 January 2015

How to tell you're an old animator

There are certain events that make you sit back and realise that you have changed, things that make you aware that there has been a significant passage of time. At the moment I am creating my showreel and cv for job hunting in Australia. I can't tell you how excited I am to apply to work in Australia. The whole reason to come to Korea was to save enough money to animate in countries such as Australia and Canada so this is a big step but it's easy to still think of yourself as a graduate when in fact my CV tells a very different story. Here are just a few things that have dawned on me lately to make me realise that I am no longer a 'fresh out of the box' animator and maybe those 7 years I've been animating in the industry make me an actual animator now.


Creating your CV when you leave uni is a experiment of words. How can I make the part time job I had in the toy shop at 15 sound like it's relevant to a studio environment? But as soon as you have some jobs on that CV it actually becomes more like a game of Tetris. What to leave off? What should I leave in ? How can I make that really ,really cool thing I did jump off the page? This week I faced a new problem that made me step back and take a breath...'I think I may be old!?' I had to get rid of my A-levels from my CV. Squashing a life time into two pages can prove hard but at 28 I've finally reached the stage where A-levels are such a distant memory that they no longer seem relevant on my CV. That's some scary stuff. I realise in the big scheme of things this is just silly but it's nice/weird as hell to be at an age where something so momentous from my past has well....been sent to the bench.


I paid for a rig, yes I know! As a student animator living on cup-a-soups and 'chicken' cola , the idea of paying for a rig was insane. I could use the free ones to my hearts content why would anyone ever buy a rig? Then at some point I crossed that line where I realised how 1. insanely hard rigging is and how I should give them all my money 2. How much time it takes to make a good rig. I still use the incredible Malcom rig and I even still use the morphus (old habits die hard) but when I saw the Body Mechanics set of rigs by Joe Daniels (here) I had thrown money at them before I had my first coffee. Was it worth it? YES. I love them. You definitely get what you pay for and I can now animate things I've always wanted to try such as lady walks and baby walks. It may be age (or laziness) but I've crossed the line where I'm an animator through and through so spending money to be one doesn't seem strange, after all I've been spending every penny I've made on animation books for so long that moving house means I need to hire the world's stoniest man to move my boxes, at least rigs fit on a hard drive.


This isn't an important point but the other day I caught some kids in my class reminiscing about Teenage Mutant Ninja took me far to long to realise they were reminiscing about the new modern version. I've become so old that I've started reminiscing about reminiscing.
And there you have conclusion I'm old, and there is nothing wrong with that. Bring on the next stage of animation because something tells me it's gonna be a lot of fun.


My laptop broke....ten minutes later I was online looking at how to buy a new fancy one. This isn't so much me since I think all animators would buy a laptop no matter what age but my lovely boyfriend heard my laptop had broken and he went as white as I felt. 'How will you animate?' was the first question that passed his lips. He gets this either means a. I'm annoyingly obsessed 2. He doesn't question I'm an animator. I think there is definitely a tendency in our industry to idolise everyone with experience and I still do, in fact everything I've ever learnt from animation has been a lesson taught to me buy another animator or actor but it's strange to see that the people around you don't doubt that you are an animator too. I feel I've come a long way from my first animation job where i'd go to the toilet just to dance because I was so excited....nahh that's a lie. I'll still be doing that on my first day in every animation job.

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