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By Tom Woolley on

Bridging the gaps between games, film and animation

Are you an aspiring animator, cartoonist or artist looking to break into the industry, do something you love AND get paid? Have you thought about working in videogames?

What’s that you say? You need a degree in computer science, thick glasses and a penchant for Modern Warfare 3 all-weekend multiplayer marathons?

Not necessarily so, my friend… the games industry is crying out for talented artists and animators working in both 2D and 3D, and is a bubbling pot of creative, artistic people who spend their days inventing new characters, stories and environments.

The plethora of successful games companies in the UK also means it’s a relatively dependable career path when compared to the ups and downs of life as a freelancer and short-term contracts.

So what skills are needed to be a games artist or animator?

This is where BAF Game comes in. Bradford Animation Festival’s lineup of talks by creatives working in the games industry aims to help you uncover what it takes and inspire your own creativity. If you’re not sure if the games sector is for you, then come and talk to people who have worked across animation, films and games to find out more.

Who will be there?

Tomek Zawada is the lead animator at Polish studio CD Projekt RED, who are responsible for the cinematic adventure series The Witcher. Tomek will be delivering a talk entitled ‘Choose Your Destiny: Movies vs. Games—which industry fits you?’

Christine Phelan is a character animator at influential games studio Valve and has previously worked as an animator for television. Christine will be talking about her career working across different industries and what it’s like working at one of the world’s most influential games companies.

David Bennett works for Faceware Technologies, who provide the tools for facial capture for many videogames and films. Before joining Faceware, David led the facial motion capture department at Weta Digital and worked on films such as The Adventures of Tin-Tin, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Avatar and Beowulf.

We’ll also be joined by David Brown, Philip Gray and Bill Martin from British games studio TT Games, all of whom previously worked at Cosgrove Hall—the greatly missed Manchester animation house behind beloved favourites Danger Mouse and The Wind in the Willows to name but two.

BAF Game will also be exploring the creation of urban environments for films and games in a special panel event, as well as uncovering the new opportunities the web and mobile devices such as the iPad present for animators, artists and games designers.

This really is just scratching the surface of the programme—hopefully you’ll see the many overlaps that exist between the worlds of games, film, animation and art, and how easy it is to find yourself wandering between them without really noticing.

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