Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Student Feedback - August 2011

 As a teacher you receive student feedback as you finish with the various classes.
Below are some notes I received from students directly or through forms that were handed in.
Once again I'm very proud that I am able to help direct the students into our industry in a way that they find positive. It's good for everyone to receive feedback, the good as well as areas to work on.
Reading these notes always gives me a good feeling that I'm doing something right. 
Every now and then you need a shot of something positive.
And I'll take that when it's there :-)

When you first came to this school we were all determined to not like you, because we thought you were taking one of our other instructors jobs... well that didn't last too long, within a week of you joining us you became my favorite instructor !!!! Your story class continued exceeding our expectations! It rocked and it was soo fun when you got us up and "acting" with each other. It was so nice to do something away from our drawing board or computer for a couple of hours! It helped us with the long hours sitting and working! So thank you very much for that!

Awesome mentor! Enjoy the e-Critiques and Q&As a lot. Should write a book, as he has some very inspiring things to say when it comes to giving advice about the different ways of animating a character, and how to approach a shot.

The feedback and suggestions given by Mark are very helpful because he challenges us to think of how we can incorporate the right body mechanics in a way that also supports the acting of the character. 

Mark always explains everything in detail; he takes his time to answer all our questions during Q&A and even looks at our latest work if we need extra help. Also his grading is always fair. And he tries to push us even further with our work, especially with our acting performance, which is great preparation for the next term

Mark is super enthusiastic in class & always offers up great tips or suggestions for our work both in Q&A & in crits. Mark has also been very supportive of the ideas we have for our shots, and he helps us improve upon & develop those ideas & increase the clarity of our work.

Mark is an excellent mentor. he has great work stories and gives very clear and constructive feedback. I have learned a lot in this term and am very happy with my progress.

Mark is a really fun mentor to have. He's very patient, and clearly has loads of experience. He is very open to questions and always makes sure we are on track.

Mark is a great mentor!  His traditional background offers helpful, alternative perspectives on techniques and workflow.  His critiques have been helpful in improving both my mechanics and creative choices.  I also appreciate that he starts out each Q&A by quickly saying hello to everyone individually on-camera.

Mark is a great teacher. He's got a lot of experience and can give a clear comment of what to do or fix

Mark have a huge experience and it's shown in is critique. I love the fact that he give his critique so early, he is the fastest mentor in that field that I ever had. For a person like me who work at the same time it's the most precious thing to have your critique so early in the week to plan your work of this week.

Mark is a great mentor, he's really good at pointing out the things you did right/direction you should go with a shot as well as the errors and things you need to fix. It's a lot of fun hearing about his experience working on different movies too.

In class, Mark keeps things fun & upbeat, & he usually manages to have everyone on camera, if only for a second to say "hey!", which is really cool; I think it helps the class become more familiar with one another. Cool!!

Friday, August 26, 2011

How much money can i make doing this ?


Below is the completed Wage survey. If interested, click the list below to see it larger. - Mark


Once again, here's a recent article from the American Animation Guild 839 Blog in regards to the WAGE SURVEY that was sent out and information gathered. It lets you know roughly what is happening within the industry in the states. These numbers are from union as well as non-union shops.

In comparison, the wages in Canada are generally lower but it all depends on the individual situation.
For example, as a board artist working at Disney TV during 2007, I was paid $1900.00 / week to finish a maximum 16 page script from start to finish in 5 weeks.
The Board job in Vancouver for a 20 page script to be completed in 5 weeks paid $ 1250.00 / week.
The pay for character animators going around town is in the range of $1000.00 to $2000.00 / week once again depending on the individual situation.

Below are the results of the Wage Survey in the United States:
 For comparison purposes, all salaries are computed based upon a forty-hour week.

Directors - TV
  • Minimum: $1,312.50
  • Median: $2,625.00
  • Maximum: $6,009.61
  • 2010 median: $2,500.00
  • Change: +$125.00

Production Boards (TV)
  • Minimum: $906.25
  • Median: $1,892.50
  • Maximum: $3,000.00
  • 2010 median: $1,900.00
  • Change: -$7.50

Character Layout
  • Minimum: $1,034.04
  • Median: $1,854.00
  • Maximum: $4,000.00
  • 2010 median: $1,677.00
  • Change: +$177.00

Visual Development
  • Minimum: $1,098.76
  • Median: $2,101.20
  • Maximum: $3,900.00
  • 2010 median: $2,115,38
  • Change: -$14.18

  • Minimum: $952.56
  • Median: $1,800.00
  • Maximum: $2,612.50
  • 2010 median: $1,672.73
  • Change: +$127.27

Character Animators
  • Minimum: $1,155.00
  • Median: $1,639.23
  • Maximum: $3,163.23
  • 2010 median: $2,068.84
  • Change: -$429.61

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Studio Politics - some thoughts

The American Animation Labor union business representative Steve Hulett has recently posted an article on the Animation Guild 839 BLOG that I find worth mentioning to our senior students as they venture onward into the industry.
- Thanks Steve for taking the time to write down your thoughts. 

Here are some of his notes from the post :

I counsel a lot of artists about how to play the politics at their particular studio, and my advice is more often than not similar at the Animation Guild's far-flung venues:

1) Don't tell your supervisor "I told you so" after you turn out to be right ... and he is wrong.

2) Pick the issues over which you want to go to the mat. (And remember: the less you go to the mat, the more effective you'll be when you finally do.)

3) Be positive rather than negative. Be happy to help out when asked. Strive to be kind.

4) Know what the legal and contractual rules are. When they're being violated, call me and we can discuss different remedial strategies. (They usually don't include the business representative coming in with guns blazing.)

5) If you have a shitty workplace personality (like for instance you don't suffer fools gladly, you get sarcastic too often, or bad-mouth studio bozos a lot when they're out of the room) build a fake, happy-face personality on top of it. This will serve you well over time.

6) As much as possible, stow your ego at home in the garage. Nobody much cares what your problems are. They are focused on theirs.

7) When in conflict with supervisors or studio brass and things look dire (meaning: you seem to get the stink eye a lot) seriously consider rolling onto your back with all four paws in the air and exposing your throat. (This is yet another metaphor for apologizing and "eating humble pie", even when you truly believe there is no valid reason to do so. You've parked your ego in the garage, remember?)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Pitching a good story isn't the easiest thing to do ...

Sometimes pitching a good story isn't the easiest thing to do. ;-)

Our junior 2D and 3D animation students are getting ready to go forward with their ideas for the upcoming senior terms at VANarts.
here in downtown Vancouver B.C. Canada.

The students are a great group as they work together, searching for creative ideas.
Below is a compilation of several of my Term 2 STORY CLASS students as they practice 'pitching' their story ideas for their senior animated short films.

They have fun as they're learning. Sort of the way it should be :-)

Pitching a good story isn't the easiest thing to do. from Mark Pudleiner on Vimeo.