We visited three studios in London; Cine Site, Nexus and Tandem. Here's what i think...
This was the last of the three we visited, it was the most professional visit we went on, which could be seen as a good thing...but I would say its a bad thing. We had to sign a form to say we would not speak of what we saw there (understandable) We were guided round by two people, one at the front, one at the back. We saw the companies show reel...all positive stuff.
Watching people work there, they all looked happy, who would be happy working on blockbuster films? You can't fault the look of the place either, the building was really nice, kept clean and had a calm feel to it, it was huge though, you could probably get lost in there! It didn't have loads of people running round shouting stuff and people ordering people to do stuff, people panicking about deadlines etc, so that was quite nice.
I was a really nice place, I was going to say how it annoyed me how we only heard the positives from the company, but the lady who took us round told us of the negatives ('skyline' was a flop) and gave it to us straight saying, she said:
. about how their a company and have to think about money, and keeping a float
. told us that the show reels they want to see are things with photo real stuff in it
. skyline was a flop
. you might start off making cups of tea, then work on a shitty film, then go on to the big stuff
She was very honest.
But its not for me. Its too impersonal, she talked about the company not the individuals and that put me off. Plus my work has never been 'Photo real' so I wouldn't' stand a chance of getting in there. She never talked about animation skills though.
This porridge was too hot!
This was the second place we went to, the place was tall and thin meaning it was all cramped inside. It occupied about 4 floors (one being the basement) the first floor was really hot and stuffy, but we got a really nice breakdown of some of the projects they work on... what was nice was that we were talking to one person for most of the time on the 1st floor, but other people started to pitch in and say stuff and started to get other work up which they wanted us to see, which was positive, because it meant they were proud about what they do there.
We went to the top floor where the directors lived (and also the air-con), we spoke to one of them (three in total....two freelance one permanent, think thats right) called Johnny Kelly, he was a nice guy. He told us about generally working in the industry which was good to hear about, learned a bit from that.
This porridge was too cold...but I might like cold porridge
We started off the day at Tandem Films. We were shown around by Danial Greaves and it was as if we were invited for breakfast at his house, nothing seemed planned, we just came in and he took us round. I thought that was good, it made it much more relaxed, in comparison to cine site which we started out be signing forms.
He took us to peoples working areas and we watched them work for a bit (I'm guessing they didn't like that, that much!) but we watched them and asked them questions which they were all to willing to answer.
The basement was where they did green screen editing and kept the clients (which everyone found hilarious)
We all crammed into the editing room where we watched their show real and much more. We were in there for ages and probably overstayed our welcome... but we got so much out of Danial Greaves.
What Mr Greaves had to say was so interesting, from him talking about his own work to talking about the animation industry and how tandem works. How he came to make manipulation was a really nice story. Then speaking to another of the Directors there (his name slips my mind) and watching one of his pieces of work was also really interesting (he was a bit more willing to speak about his work...called Text Island)
Watching one of the employees at Tandem working on a new short for Simon's Cat made me realize that this is what i like to do and people pointed that out to me as well.
Its the mixture of seeing someone animating and also listening to the directors talking about side projects which they work on, which makes me realize that the Porridge was just right here.