top of page

I have always been fascinated with cartoons while growing up, from Spider Man to the anime movie, Akira. For movies, Star Wars: A New Hope was the first film I saw with visual effects that really changed everything and set my standard for science fiction and fantasy films. I also grew up reading comic books, and that is where I learned how to draw (and read, but don't tell my pre-school teachers that). While I was choosing a college major for undergraduate studies, I was dissuaded by my parents to not become an artist because “you won't make any money”. My first college major was in graphic design but it was a specialty major for business majors under advertising, so I switched to political science with a career path to become a lawyer to appease my family. But after working as a paralegal for some firms, I quickly realized that becoming a lawyer was not the path I wanted to follow after one year of law school.


Luckily, I developed a fondness for PC computers and learning new technology while in college. That is where I learned about how Pixar's Toy Story was made with computer 3D programs. I had a chance to visit Pixar while it was still setting up its headquarters in Emeryville, CA and saw their animation story boards for Monsters Inc. and the Incredibles. I knew if I could learn the technology and apply it with my artistic skills, I could become an animator. I liked 2 D animation, but drawing each frame on paper to make a person move and talk seemed too tedious and waited until technology catch up like Toon Boom animation software. I tried self learning through about 3D animation software like lightwave 3D and 3DS max for 3D modeling, Adobe Effects, and Adobe Premiere for video editing as I wanted to become a director of movies and animation.


I learned the process of how movies were made by being a movie extra on the set in some major motion projects and thought going this route would get me into directing faster, but unfortunately I had to let that go as I got married and had a child and make a constant paycheck to pay the bills.


While working in the IT field, I kept an interest in animation and the advancing technology that was becoming more available to the public. When I first tried Maya, I felt it was way too daunting to learn on my own and I decided to go back to school to learn from actual professionals in the industry. I did get accepted into the Savannah Art Academy of school and design, but they did not have an online animation program at the time and I had would have to go through another program, motion graphics. I decided again to wait until I found a school that had the animation program I wanted to enter. After a couple of years of searching, I found AAU with the online animation/ VFX master's degree program.


I am unsure about what area of the animation/ visual effects industry I would like to pursue, but story boarding or pre-visualization would be the main 2 areas of interest. My experience in graphic design from running my own small business and from drawing comic book characters in independent comic strips would be a positive attribute for finding work in those areas.

bottom of page