Friday, 14 September 2018

What's in the 2nd Year at Escape Studios?

What does the second year of animation studies at Escape Studios hold for our undergraduate animation students?

Like last year, I'll be teaching the second year animators, as they start to specialise in their chosen field and also tackle their first group projects.

So, what can our students expect from their second year of animation study at Escape Studios?

The second year of animation study at Escape Studios is worth 120 credits in total, and involves completion of four modules, which run consecutively.

AN5001 Computer Animation Pro – 30 Credits
This is the second animation module (in the first year, students tackle AN4001; Animation Core), in which students tackle character actions, pantomine, acting, performance and dialogue. The module culminates in an entry in the monthly 11 Second Club competition. Last year five of our students placed in the top twenty entries in the competition (below is an entry by Maria Robertson). This year we hope to do even better.

AN5002 Computer Animation Advanced – 30 Credits
AN5002 is a six week module, which finishes just before the Christmas holidays, in which students tackle animal and creature animation, including quadruped locomotion and performance.  Much of the animation industry in London focuses on realistic animal and creature work, achieving photoreal levels of quality, so it's important that we tackle head-on the precise and demanding nature of this kind of work.  Check out some of the excellent work done by our second year animators below.

To see more detail on AN5002 Computer Animation Advanced, follow this link.

CR5001-DF2CA Animation Specialism – 15 Credits
Animation Specialism is the third module in the 2018-19 academic year, allowing students to explore a subject specialism of their own choice. This could be character or creature animation, or even a related discipline such as storyboarding or character design. It's a fun module as we bring in guest tutors to deliver specialist areas of teaching, allowing students to push their creative skills and explore a wide range of creative choices.

This year, tutors include producer Steve Burch on producing animation,  story artist Iliana Franklin on storyboarding, Ash Ellis on Lighting for Animators, Michael Davies on Character Rigging, and Amedeo Beretta on character acting.

The module culminates in the presentation of a portfolio of work in the student's chosen field. For example, Aaron Hopwood chose character animation as his specialism.

To see more detail about CR5001, the 2nd year Specialism Module, follow this link.

PR5001 Studio Project – 45 Credits
The year culminates in the PR5001 Studio Project, where students collaborate to work together to a brief, designed as closely as possible to simulate working on a live client project. The Studio Project runs for 12 weeks, with a week off for Easter. The Studio Project is broken up into two projects, giving students the chance to practice digital film-making twice in a short space of time. This allows our animators to learn from their mistakes and develop a much more efficient work flow.

Project 1 - A Teaser/Trailer for an animated film, game or TV Show  

Little Wing, by Aaron Hopwood (Writer, Director, Editor ),  Piotr Noworyta (CG Supervisor), Maria Robertson (Producer), and Nichole Gonzalez (Storyboards). Little Wing was animated in Maya and rendered in Arnold.

Project 2 - An animal or creature documentary 

"Planet Mars", a documentary created and animated by 2nd year animation students at Escape Studios. Directed by Sebastian Kuder; Katerina Zacharakis - Producer; Stephen Mealand – Storyboards; Maria Robertson –Storyboards, Nichole Gonzalez – Writer.  Planet Mars was rendered in Unreal Engine and has made the official selection for many film festivals around the world.

The Studio Project takes us up to the end of May and is the final project for the academic year. It also involves entering the "Rookies" annual contest.

Time to join the Fb Classroom
We also encourage all our students to start thinking early about the kinds of companies they might like to work for, and consider internships over the long summer vacation. A successful internship can be a powerful stepping stone to a job at the end of the final academic year.

Facebook Classroom
In the meantime, all our second year animators should join our FB Classroom - this closed group is our online Classroom, where we shared ideas, post work, and get critique from our peers. 

1st, 3rd and 4th year at Escape Studios
Follow the links below to see what is in the other years at Escape Studios:
The Escape Studios Animation Blog offers a personal view on the art of animation and visual effects. To find out more about our new BA/MArt, now recruiting for September 2019, follow this link.   To apply, visit the official page here.

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