Next up in our animation industry blog series, we turn our literal spotlight onto Nick Seymour to find out what it’s like being an animator at Cloth Cat…
How did you get into animating?
I’ve never actually had an animation lesson! (don’t tell the boss) I always liked drawing and illustrating, so I suppose I just got lucky. I studied an MA in Animation at University of South Wales for one year, but it was a more director/producer-based course rather than a traditional animation-based university course. This was where I made my first short film, which was screened in a few European film festivals. On the strength of my film, I was offered a place on a prestigious production workshop around Europe called Animation Sans Frontieres – I was one of only fifteen people from Europe to be chosen!
For those interested, here is a link to my short: http://www.thehokeypokeymen.com/
What’s your favourite thing about being an animator?
I love the whole process of animating. It’s great seeing the final product, with everyone’s work coming together for the first time, especially when you think about the fact that it was all created from nothing. It’s a privileged place to be.
What inspires you?
I am a big Sylvain Chomet fan – it probably shows in my work. ‘Belleville Rendez-Vous’ and ‘The Illusionist’ are amazing. As a kid, I was really into ‘He-Man’, ‘Transformers’ and ‘The Mask’ – the classics!
I guess I’m really inspired by good storytelling. I’m particularly fond of short films; animation or live action. I really enjoy the art of telling a complete story, that can make you laugh, cry or sing, in just a few minutes.
What skills are important when animating?
Essentially, my job as an animator is to breathe life into the characters. I think an eye for detail is important for that. The process of animation can seem overwhelming sometimes, but when it’s broken down into smaller tasks it becomes easier and more manageable. Organisation is helpful too, as we often have to prioritise our key tasks, and keep track when we add layers of complexity. And it’s good to be a keen observer and people-watcher too, studying all those different movements and twitches!
What’s it like to work at Cloth Cat?
Cloth Cat is a great environment. For previous projects I’ve worked on, there was a lot of deadline pressure, but here everyone has a really great attitude. Everyone helps each other out – it’s a great team.
Any advice for aspiring animators?
My advice to aspiring animators would be persist! And most importantly, Enjoy it!
Describe yourself in 3 words
Supple, fruity, with a well balanced, velvety structure… oh, and bad at maths.
What do you like to do in your free time?
I like watching people. I also like to vary how I watch people. Sometimes I sit, sometimes I lie down. I often stand. It’s all quite exciting. As long as I’m watching someone (I’m watching you right now!)
15 May 2015