Tuesday, June 28, 2011

New blog header and more thoughts

It's always such a production on this blog. But if you were wondering what Solace was going to look like, look up.

Originally, I was going to post just a plain link - but I decided to blow your mind with two of the same image. I'm probably going to post more today anyway (I say that now.)

In other news, I am actually employed. You can argue the technicalities of that all you want - as I've had quite a bit of freelance and good freelance at that, and one can say that this is still freelance because I am still working from home, but it's a biweekly paying job (as opposed to a deposit and final check) and that's an improvement in my books.

So to all those grads waiting for that "real job" to happen, I had very little hope for a while especially with some leg pulling that I was experiencing.

More on this, since I'm feeling verbose:

I've often considered "REVOLT" to be more of a failure than a success, however its unfinished look has actually drawn more good attention that I thought it would (especially on Industry Day). So far I've gotten four or five good freelance jobs just because REVOLT was left uncoloured in some (read: most) areas, and not cleaned up.

Now I'm really not saying don't finish your film, Sheridan kids, that was a fluke.

To Grads, here's a checklist for your life right now: I'm saying take your time, and look at your work as it is right now. Where do you stand and what does your work do for you? Can you properly present yourself to a studio right now?
Do you have a portfolio that doesn't have that ridiculous Sheridan portfolio URL (No offense to Sheridan, but that URL is impossible to remember)?
Do you make sure you don't post stuff you're not legally allowed to yet (due to the project its related to being yet unreleased)? If you do, be sure to talk to your mom and dad about getting you a lawyer if the company gets ripped off because of you.
Are you professional in your cover letter writing? Not formal, not casual, just somewhere in the middle. You're not writing to the Queen, but you're also not writing to your mom.
Have you gotten off your computer, to buy a GO ticket, or some other transportation ticket and gone down to Toronto? Have you gone down to L.A. (for those California-inclined)?
Are you still playing video games?

You should always aim to be productive. But that goes without saying.

There's also that awful flipside to being complacent, I think, where I hear stories of peers who've become too pushy and too desperate. Frankly, I think this is worse. I admit I've gotten really close to being too pushy, but I think this actually repulses employers...a lot.

Let's be clear here, I Think being pushy with crappy freelancers is a good idea. Studios, not so much. A reputable studio is not going to rip you off, let's face it, they have a Human Resources department, and a few others to make sure they don't.

Freelancers, generally speaking, don't really know who you are, and just want the work done. They're usually alone, and you need to know what you're doing so you don't get ripped off. Want to make sure? Talk to one of the Illustration grads, and ask them how to not get ripped, how to write your own contract, and how you can not screw them up. There are more and more animation grads doing illustration, and I know that a lot of animators settle on a price where as illustrators will try and get a reasonable deal in freelance.

I'm also beginning to realize that one of the most prominent issues with unemployed Animation Grads is that they're so used to the school computers and being able to just come and use them - that they themselves don't own one. Oops. No big deal.

Unfortunately you may have to joe-job it for a bit, but then you can get a solid computer. You can make a nice thick computer tower for 600$. (then there's assembly, and recycling fees, and taxes above that, making it about 750-800). Still that's about a month and a half at part time, at minimum wage. Easily done.

Current Sheridan Students:

Don't be turned off by the stories of unemployment, please view this video: http://blip.tv/will-draw-for-food/will-draw-for-food-compare-your-life-to-pixar-3086885

That's all for now.


  1. thank you so much for sharing that link and your thoughts about work after graduating :) it keeps be believing theres hope! I've also read that it takes 10 years (or 10,000 hours) of practice to become and expert at something. i guess everything worthwhile takes a lot of hard work and time!

  2. Thank you, Seema! Sometimes I feel like I'm talking to myself when it comes to the rants on my blog (which is totally cool).

    But I think people should see the world after graduation from a less than immediate-wild-success point of view. Because success isn't immediate, or even wild, 99.9% of the time.