Entrevista a Benjamin Su

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Roger
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Entrevista a Benjamin Su

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Hola a todos! En este caso os pongo aqui una entrevista que me ha pasado Ben Su, animador de Pixar, y profesor de los cursos de Animum Live!Online. La entrevista está en inglés, espero que no sea un handicap para que entendáis por lo menos la esencia de lo que cuenta.

1.Where are you from and when did you get an interest in animation?
I was born in Taipei, Taiwan and our family moved to Canada when I was ten. I’ve been drawing for as long as I can remember and was influenced by both Japanese and North American comic books and animation. I didn’t take art seriously until I went to an arts highschool when I found myself surrounded by other artists who lived through their art. I have always enjoyed watching Disney animated films and it was a perfect outlet for me to bring characters to life.

2. So you studied both traditional animation as well as computer animation?
Yes, I took classical animation and computer animation program at Sheridan College. I got into this field thinking I would be drawing for the rest of my career, but 2d jobs were becoming scarce by the time I had graduated from classical animation. Having an interest in computer software’s and being a big fan of Pixar movies I decided to give computer animation a try. I’m still very grateful that I have the 2d skills as I find it strengthens my animation and allows me to plan my animation on paper and design stronger poses.

3. What do you think was the hardest step transitioning from 2d to 3d?
I’m speaking strictly from the animation side of the software. Learning the Graph Editor was a very difficult, as I was taught to think graphically. Learning to apply principles such as slow in; slow out by moving curves took awhile for me to grasp. Also the rig limitation is definitely hard to swallow. In 2d you can sometimes cheat expressions by exaggerating them. In 3d you need to create a brand new blend shape to achieve this effect. This becomes laborious as it involves modeling.

4. What are some of the projects you have worked on after school?
I was fortunate enough to land my first job on an Animated Feature Film “ The Wild.” I was on the project very early on and was able to model some of the main character in the film, I eventually worked my way through to become a Lead Crowd Animator and Shot Animator. From there I worked on “ Everyone’s Hero” and “ 9” at Starz Animation. “ Space Chimps” at Vanguard Animation. “ Cloudy with a Chance Of Meatballs” at Sony Imageworks. So far at Pixar Animation, I’ve worked on “ Toy Story 3,” “Cars2” and “Brave.”

5. What softwares were used on these projects? And what software would you recommend an inspiring animator to learn before breaking into the field?
We used Houdini on “ The Wild,” and the rest of the projects were done on Maya. Pixar has its on proprietary software. I would recommend Maya as it is the most common software used in this industry for animators. It’s important to be able to pick up new software’s on the go when you are sometimes thrown on different projects. Companies usually will train you, but the quicker you learn, the less ramp up time you use the more valuable you are to the company.

6. What is it like working for Pixar and how does an animator land a job there?
Pixar holds some of the best talent in the field of animation. It is very inspiring to work here; to learn from your peers and to give them your best work in return. The bar is always set very high and the company makes sure to balance work with a very fun atmosphere. Pixar looks for reels that include good storytelling and unique acting. Make sure your characters have good weight, texture and the personalities/emotions are clear. Also don’t give up if you don’t get in the first time, continue to work hard on your craft and improve your reel and try again!

7. Do you have any new projects on the horizon?
I will be working on “ Brave” until 2012, I’m not sure what my next project would be. As for personal work, I look forward to doing more Children’s books. I have a 16month old daughter and she has been taking up most of my free time now a days J

8. Any advice for aspiring Animators out there?
Be open to feedback, it is the only way to improve your work. Try to meet people in the industry and get feedback from them on your reel. Also, study acting. Either through films or observing from life. The more real your acting is, the more relatable your characters will be to the audience and the more successful your animation will be.
KISS

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Alcover
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Re: Entrevista a Benjamin Su

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Que grande Ben,

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