Flix UK's offices

Date published: May 29, 2018

Students learn animation skills on the job

James Russell, Creative Technical Demonstrator at MediaCityUK and Fraser Durie, Course Leader for MA Wildlife Documentary negotiated a knowledge transfer partnership with a local animation and post-production company. They proposed the project with Flix Faciltiies to give our students hands-on industry experience, in line with our ICZ strategy.

James gave his time to provide training on compositing techniques for Flix’s mid and senior level visual effects (VFX) staff, using industry standard software Nuke. In return, Flix offered one day’s training in 2d animation software “Toon Boom Harmony”, a package we have recently bought to use at the University.

BAFTA award winning animator Jardine Sage, whose work features regularly on CITV, taught three level-six animation students. The lucky students were also able to meet and quiz Head of Animation, Graphics and VFX Simon Partingdon. This was a great opportunity for our students to gain an insight into their chosen careers and be trained at an industry level in cutting-edge software by leading professionals.

Undergraduate student in Animation Larisa Covaciu said: “The experience was really good because we were actually able to meet and learn from industry professionals and even more than that, we went to their office and got a feel of the actual environment and how it is to work for a company. I didn't have any experience with Toon Boom before, but I was able to play around with it and learn from the best. I also mentioned I was interested in production and so was given the opportunity to speak with one of the producers at the company. Overall it was a great experience and I am glad I was part of it.”

Fellow student Robert Jones added: “I found the experience very worthwhile in learning to rig my characters for my group production piece; the staff were also very helpful and accommodating. “

Ameera Hill, Head of Technical Services, Digital IT, MediaCityUK said: “This is a great example of how we can collaborate with our academic and industry stakeholders and get the best use of our facilities in order to ensure students are receiving the very best in terms of their experience whilst at Salford. It also supports our ambition to become a centre of excellence for Toon Boom.”

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