Adam Bailey, Head of Animation Development at Cloth Cat Animation delivered possibly one of the most positive industry talks I've been lucky enough to experience so far. Beginning with telling us what a good time it is for the animation industry in the UK, and an even greater time for us to be trying to break in to it, Adam gave us a fascinating insight as to how Cloth Cat started up and how they work behind closed doors. One of the key things he mentioned was that there are always jobs that people forget about when it comes to animation, so having other skills is vital when it comes to approaching employers for opportunities to work in a pipeline.
As we're currently deciding upon our work for our final major projects, it was extremely useful to hear Adam's comments about demo reels. His advice was to have a clear idea about what sort of companies we are showcasing ourselves for, because apparently as quick as thirty seconds in to a reel, you can get a feel for what that person is about and where they fit in to the industry. As great as it is to have ideas, it's also good to know your audience and think about your market as well.
In terms of contacting Cloth Cat about job opportunities, they are particularly thorough with posting what positions are available on their blog, although they take showreels all year round. Another of the really useful points Adam made was that at this point, we need to have showreels and portfolios ready to go, so that if we see a company has posted somewhere about a potential new project, we can put ourselves out there. There's no harm in introducing yourself, because many companies will keep showreels on their system for potential upcoming projects when they might need to take on more team members. Following companies on Twitter and other social networks and being actively involved in the online community are all ways of making a name for yourself and meeting new contacts.