Jason graduated from the University of Lincoln in 2005 with a BA (Hons) in Animation, having specialized in 2D hand-drawn, motion graphics, and compositing. His career has taken him from the UK to Australia. His client work has spanned commercials, documentary films, game trailers, large-scale projections & interactive experiences for clients such as Etihad, Ford & Microsoft.
How was your University time?
Fun, I made good friends, and it allowed me the space to experiment with animation without having to make a living from it. I couldn’t blanket recommend universities to art students anymore, it’s so expensive, and the technical side can be learned on youtube for next to nothing. Having a peer group to learn simultaneously though it is pretty valuable to help you grow.
Why did you choose a career in this field?
Fine art seemed so stuffy and boring, so I considered Illustration and Animation, picked animation because it sounded more exciting. 18yr olds should probably not make life-changing decisions.
What was your first job or nuggets from jobs you had that helped you get to where you are today?
My first full-time job in Animation was at a Brighton studio in the UK, which made animated gif backgrounds for phones and created web series. This was back in 2007 before iPhones and before youtube had become a massive thing. This taught me a lot about creating work for the market, not for myself. Also, how to loop gifs.
How did you prepare for the interview?
I researched the company website, got my portfolio in order and made sure I had a clean outfit.
Things are changing very fast in the industry; how do you keep yourself updated. Please list techniques or newsletters, podcasts, events, etc.
I follow a lot of artists on Instagram, which helps me keep up with the latest hotness. I get more value from participating in online forums & slacks. Having regular contact with peers and people better than me is helpful as a remote freelancer.
There’s a limit to how much I want to think about work, so I have fallen off on podcasts, but I’d recommend the mograph.com podcast and Monday Meeting. Motion Hatch is great for the business side too.
Any advice about CVs?
If you’re reeling good, nobody reads them. I’m only half-joking. Keep them short, and proofread thoroughly.
Advice for someone looking for a job?
Be polite, don’t pester, and realize rejection isn’t a personal assault. There are 100 reasons to choose a candidate or pick someone’s reel, and missing out on a job is usually because someone has already done the exact work they are looking for.
Why do you think you were selected among other candidates?
I’m personable, competent and professional. I assume my reel was good enough.
Lessons from jobs that you couldn’t get.
Don’t dwell on rejections. Focus on what you can control.