Tuesday, December 7, 2010

How Long Did it Take for You to Feel Comfortable Showing Your Work to Others?

You have to learn to have a thick skin pretty fast when you’re an animator. Getting used to having your work looked at by others is a necessity. It’s so easy to lose sight of what’s working and what’s not working in your shot when you’ve been staring at it for a long time, and one way to help you get through that phase is to show it to other people to get their thoughts on it. So that’s something you should get used to immediately, if not sooner. I was doing that from the time I was in school, and it never was a problem. Mind you, I was a performing artist before I got into animation, so “putting it out there” for peer review was already something I was pretty used to.

And in the case of some studios where you’ll be attending meetings called “dailies” every day, you’ll be showing your shot to the director in front the ENTIRE DEPARTMENT. The first time I had to do that on the first feature I worked on, I was scared silly. I was working alongside some of the best animators in the world, and I felt like throwing up. But of course, it’s a situation you get used to, and you do start to get a sense of what the director is going to really like when they see it as you get to know their sensibilities, so dailies get easier to take as you go along. I’d say once I’d done it four or five times, I started to get in the groove and feel ok about it. It also gave me the opportunity to see the progress of other animators, and boy oh boy, did I ever pick up a TON of knowledge during that film.

Guest Blogger Dana Boadway


Helaine Crawford said...

Wow, dailies sounds like an amazing opportunity to see what everyone else is doing and get good feedback, although definitely nerve-wracking as well.

Karen said...

I would probably be terrified at the start too with events like the dailies, not so much for fear of what they would say but more speaking in front of such an important team.

Ah but in the end it would be amazing to work with such insanely talented people. One thing if for sure, through a person's work you can see a part of themselves so getting to know their work is getting to know a part of them. Thanks for the awesome article!

Phil Willis said...


I still go through that anxiety presenting my work in dailies.

I'm sure it gets better eventually, but have that exact sickening feeling just before showing my stuff in front of sixty or so animators that I really respect.

But there's nothing like the feeling when the animation director says they like your shot.

Thanks for the inspiration.

Rajesh Gupta said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this topic. Very inspirational!

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