What I've learned: From studying Animation to working full-time

“I’ve always been captivated by animation, and as a kid I was fascinated by how the characters I loved were created and made to move in film, television and games. Since then I decided that I had to be a part of that process.”

Since graduating, Animation student Erika Wu has been working at Studio Moshi, the creators of “The Day My Butt Went Psycho” after being recommended by her JMC lecturer Damian Smart. Since then, she’s worked on “The Shopkins Movie: World Vacation” which premiered in cinemas on October 5th, and is currently working on a new kid’s series called “Space Chickens”.

What are some of the biggest lessons you’ve learned since working in the industry?

I’ve learnt that sometimes when I’m working on a difficult shot and I get frustrated with it, it’s usually best to move on to a different one or take a break and come back to it later. It’s also better not to overwork a shot, and better to focus on creating strong key poses rather than smooth in-betweens.

What were your favourite things about JMC?

I found the small class sizes were very helpful for me. It was easier to get help from my lecturers and I got to better know and connect with them and my classmates. I found it useful how we were taught a variety of both 2D and 3D animation techniques including pen and paper, cut-out and stop-motion as skills learnt in one will still be relevant in the others.

How do you feel your time at JMC prepared you for the industry?

I learned a lot about puppet animation, and how to combine it with hand-drawn stuff to make my work process more efficient and give my projects look higher quality too. I also learned what businesses are looking for in potential recruits; adaptability, quick thinking and willingness to learn is key. You can’t be inflexible and sometimes you have to study new software to keep up with the industry.

What advice would you give to current students?

To this day, I continue to reference what I learned, so save all your notes from class. Whether you find a job in the industry, or pursue animation as a hobby, those notes will continue to be helpful to you.
You can check out Erikas portfolio here!
Find out more about studying Animation at JMC Academy