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Creativity for Hire

April 18, 2013

Industry converges to find next generation of animation talent at Sheridan

For Immediate Release: April 18, 2013
Oakville, Ontario

Over 130 representatives from Canada’s top film, media and entertainment companies will gather at Sheridan on April 25 and 26 to hire Canada’s future stars in animation and digital visual effects.  Nelvana, Mercury Filmworks (Ottawa) and DHX Media (Halifax and Vancouver) will be on site. So will dozens of smaller shops that fuel the GTA’s highly creative media scene like Guru Studios, House of Cool, and Arc Productions. HP is the presenting sponsor.

A Giant Homecoming

Animation Industry Day is a chance for production houses to preview the exceptional talent of over 130 students graduating from Sheridan’s Bachelor of Animation degree and its post graduate certificates in computer animation, digital character animation and digital visual effects.  A sneak peek of this year’s films can be found at http://vimeo.com/62097842

“It’s like a giant homecoming,” explains Tony Tarantini, a Professor in the Bachelor of Animation degree program and Coordinator of Animation Industry Day.  “Sheridan has a very strong legacy in animation. We’ve been teaching it for 40 years so we’ve seeded the industry. Many of the people who are coming back to do the hiring are  either graduates themselves or work at production houses run by our alumni.”

On April 25, screenings take place that showcase each student’s culminating work – a one minute film they create from script to screen.  Students tackle everything from the concept art and storyboarding to the design, art direction, layout and animation.  Following the viewings, students display their portfolios on computer terminals, so industry representatives can ask them about their work.  Formal interviews take place the next day.

Precision, Patience and Rigour

“What gives our students the edge is our commitment to teaching the fundamentals,” adds Dr. Angela Stukator, Associate Dean, Animation and Game Design at Sheridan.  “Only after they’ve developed a sense of using pencils, paper and paint do students get the option to make films in 2D, 3D, or stop motion. The entire program is also very rigorous.  Students are accustomed to getting up to three hours of homework for every hour they spend in class. Patience and precision are needed to succeed in this very meticulous and demanding type of work.”

Rather than focusing on making students job-ready, the programs enhance students’ comfort levels in experimenting with new techniques and technology so that they leave Sheridan well positioned to help take industry where it’s going.  Each program has its own Program Advisory Committee, giving Sheridan direct access to the ideas and interests of industry leaders.

Rewarding Top Talent

“Historically, about 30% of the graduating class receives a job offer over the two-day event,” says Tarantini.  “And the day is about more than recruitment.  Representatives from the TAFFI film festival – which was started by four Sheridan animation grads – and the Ottawa International Animation Festival are coming to meet filmmakers and find festival content. Approximately $25,000 in cash and equipment will also be awarded to students in recognition of their achievements.

For a full schedule, please visit the Animation Industry Day website:

Animation Industry Day

About Sheridan

Sheridan’s Faculty of Animation, Arts and Design is the largest arts school in Canada. The wide range of programming – from animation to gaming, illustration to music theatre, and photography to crafts and design – results in a dynamic and stimulating learning environment.  Sheridan is also vested in making creativity a tangible and defining notion of the College.  The aim is to build a new kind of postsecondary institution in Ontario – one that remains focused on undergraduate, applied learning that is strongly connected to fields of practice, but that also meets university accreditation requirements so that graduates have more pathways to continued learning – today’s pre-requisite for personal, career, and industry success.

Media are welcome.  To RSVP or obtain additional information, please contact:

Christine Szustaczek
Director of Corporate Communications & External Relations
Tel: 905-815-4169
Email: christine.szustaczek@sheridancollege.ca