Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Back Up Your Data!

Hard Drive - delicate moving parts
There are few things more depressing than being told by a student that their hard drive has died, and they have lost all their work.

This means essentially starting afresh, going back to the beginning to start again the long, slow slog of building up a demo reel.  It's hard to over-stress the importance of backing up your data. It's a pain in the neck, and it takes time, but never forget that a hard drive is a delicate piece of technology filled with vulnerable moving parts.

Hard drives don't last for ever and, like all tech, will (eventually) let you down. The secret is to back up your data. But how best to do this? We take a quick look at some of the options.

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

2018 Animals & Creatures Animation Reel

Check out the latest excellent animal and creature work done by our student animators at Escape Studios. As our animation department grows, so does the volume work being generated by our talented students. Much of the work shown above was done by our second-year undergraduate students, who are only half-way through their studies, but already demonstrating a professional level of skill in their craft.

Monday, 29 January 2018

Iliana Franklin Teaches Storyboarding

Iliana Franklin teaches at Escape Studios
This past week our second year undergraduate animators welcomed a special guest tutor: Iliana Franklin, to teach the art and craft of storyboarding.

Throughout this week, Iliana has been teaching a practical and industry-led approach to storyboarding, using both traditional drawing skills and also digital techniques.

Friday, 26 January 2018

Who's Coming to the VFX Festival?

Who's coming to the VFX festival this year? As ever, we've got a great line-up of speakers, and there are still a few tickets left.

We recommend that all our students and Escapees attend the VFX Festival; it's a great way to find out the latest news in our industry, and also to meet in person some of the recruiters from the big London animation and VFX houses.

Thursday, 25 January 2018

Allison Rutland - Pixar Animator

Many congratulations to Allison Rutland, an Escapee who today works as an animator at Pixar, and worked on their latest box office smash: "Coco".

Allison is very much at the top of her game - In 2016 she won an Annie Award for Best Character Animation for her work on Inside Out - an exceptionally competitive award in which animators from all over the world compete - it's sort of like the Best Actor award at the Oscars.

In a recent interview with Escape Studios, Allison talked a little about her work at Pixar, offering advice for students on how to break into the animation industry.

Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

January 2018 Character Animation Reel

Check out the latest excellent work, our January 2108 Character animation showreel, completed by our student animators at Escape Studios. As our animation department grows, so does the volume work being generated by our talented students. All of the work shown above was done by second-year undergraduate students, who are only half-way through their studies, but already demonstrating a professional level of skill in their craft.

Monday, 22 January 2018

Show Dogs! Go Daniel, Will and Dave!

We're loving the trailer for Show Dogs, in part because three of our "Escapees" worked on this upcoming feature film, which combines live action with animation. Congratulations to Daniel Baidoo, Will Smith and Dave Novis - who all landed animation jobs on the feature. You can see Daniel Baidoo's work featured in the trailer at the 5 and 46 second mark; that's the giant panda in the cage and the dog rolling over the top of the car. Congratulations to all of them, and especially to Daniel - who is still less than half way through his second year of undergraduate studies, and landed an early internship at Lipsync, which turned into a part-time job.

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Escape Studios in "Top 100" Animation Schools

We're proud to make it into the Animation Career Review rankings of the top 100 animation schools worldwide.

After all, our undergraduate course in 3D animation only launched 18 months ago - so it's pretty cool to make the cut when we're still the new kids on the block, and haven't yet had our first graduate show.

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

"Bring Your Own Animation": Monday 22 Jan

Calling all London-based Escapees - "Bring Your Own Animation" is taking place on Monday 22 January, hosted by Kate Gabriel, 3D Artist at MPC.

BYOA is an animation event that takes place every month at a pub in London, generally on a Monday night. This month the event is taking place at The Lukin pub in Fitzrovia.

If you are a student who is working on a shot or an updated reel, bring your work on a USB or hard drive and get feedback from professional animators. You'll also hear the local gossip and find out the word on the street; there is often useful intel like - who is hiring?

Thursday, 11 January 2018

New Year's Resolutions For Animators

Happy 2018
What should an animator's new year's resolutions be? Animation is a growing business with many opportunities, especially in our home town of London where VFX, film and animated TV series continue to expand. My inbox is full of requests for skilled animators, so the future is bright for those with the right training.

That said, the world of animation and vfx is a competitive one, and good animators need to be smart to stay on top of their game.  So, apart from eating less, or going on a post-Christmas diet,  what are some simple ways to maintain your edge in 2018?

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Animation Taster Day on January 26th

Animate a bird in flight
We're running another Animation Taster Day here at Escape Studios on Friday 26th January.

Taster Days are a great chance to learn about character and creature animation, and find out what an animator's job is all about.

You will learn how to use Autodesk Maya and get a hands-on introduction to 3D Animation techniques, all for just £25.

By the end of the day you'll have your own piece of creature animation - a bird in flight - uploaded to your YouTube channel.

So, how do you sign up?

Friday, 5 January 2018

UCAS Deadline - January 15th

UCAS - time to apply
Thinking of applying to Escape Studios to study the Art of 3D Animation, Games or Visual effects?  The UCAS deadline of January 15th is fast approaching.  We are welcoming applications for the third intake of our new integrated BA/MArt in Animation, Games and VFX - just launched in September 2016.

One of the most common questions I get asked at Open Days is "should I wait to apply until I have finished my portfolio?" - to which the answer is definitely "no".  Get your application in early, and worry about your portfolio later. You'll have plenty of time before attending one of our Creative Workshops to pull your portfolio together.

Thursday, 4 January 2018

Animation Short Course Starts Monday

Paddington Bear - animated at Framestore in London
Now is the last call for our next animation short course - three months of intensive training in 3D animation - starting on Monday 8th January.

We still have a couple of seats left for anyone who wants to learn the art and craft of 3D Animation in Maya. You might be a 2D animator wanting to break into 3D, or a graduate who didn’t get the right skills at university – or someone with no experience of animation who wants to make a career change. We teach all our students from scratch, and our goal is to make you job-ready by the end of the course.

Tuesday, 2 January 2018

Cenay Oekmen Talks Concept Art

Creature Concept Art by Cenay Oekmen
Cenay Oekmen is leading a new evening class in Concept Art, starting in March 2018 and digging into the skillset that allows digital artists to create stunning artwork and help shape the style and design of a project.

Concept Art sits alongside a number of other evening classes that we are now running, such as Storyboarding and Character Design, where we teach the skills that make up the pre-production part of our industry.

Production may get shipped to cheaper shores, but pre-production work tends to stay at home, and producers regularly complain of skills shortages in this area. We asked Cenay to talk a little about how he got into Concept Art, and how students can follow in his footsteps, and break into the industry.