Mary Lim

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

pp: interview w/ John Baker

I had an informational interview with John Baker, someone who works close-by. I will definitely interview others outside of KCAI, but I thought I would include this since he did offer me some insight on the industry.

Interview with John Baker | (previous job) animator at MK12
Near the beginning of this second semester, Emmy suggested that I talk to John Baker, previous animator at MK12. Still not exactly sure what I want to do after I graduate, I wanted to talk to John and see what his experience was like as someone who worked with motion graphics. After creating my Gertrude Stein videos, I thought that maybe motion graphics could be something I could explore after I graduate. During the interview, he first explained that there were no clear titles at MK12. Though he generally worked at the front and back-end of projects, the tasks were spread out between every employee, and jobs would overlap. Everyone was included in the idea generation of a project, and everyone got to know team members intimately. I asked if this was typical of motion graphic studios, and he said that it was. He replied that people who work in motion graphics have to be the "jack-of-all trades" due to high competition and the high accessibility of learning about programs such as AfterEffects, Flash, and Photoshop. Another thing he pointed out was how animators usually refer back to historical design, borrowing from past famous designers such as Norman McLaren, John Whitney, and Charles Eames (Powers of 10). This especially resonated with me, especially because I am also interested in Art History, and enjoy learning about the roots of design. Near the end of the interview, he gave me some advice:

-Make sure you're skilled in photography, and hone your lighting skills
-Know how to use green screen and photoshop
-Know how to incorporate AfterEffects and stop-motion, especially drawn-in animation
-Find your voice visually and differentiate yourself from others
-Become proficient in controlling motion and finishing key frames
-Know how to hybridize works with imagery, animation, 3D, and others
-Work on still-design once a week, and generate motion ideas that may not be possible yet
-Learn on your own, and check out some tutorials
-Know the basics of live-action
-Understand the compression of time in film
-Finally, practice!

He emailed me some more links:
Motion Graphics Links & Resources

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