Saturday, 7 June 2014

Where Are Animation Recruiters To Be Found?

Where should animation graduates look for recruiters? Or, to put it another way, where do recruiters in the animation and visual effects industries go to find fresh talent? There are many festivals and events around the world which focus on animation and visual effects, and many of them feature jobs fairs where recruiters will take a stand. So where should the ambitious student and recent graduate go looking for work? Here is our list of top places to attend.

1. Annecy
The mother of all animation festivals is, of course, Annecy. The festival takes place in the small alpine town on Lake Annecy in April every year. Annecy is about the art of animation, but it's also about business - lots of companies take stands there, and at the same as the festival there is MIFA, an international sales event in which buyers and sellers of animation content get together. Annecy is big, bustling and overcrowded. Book early!

2. FMX
FMX is the annual visual effects shindig that takes place in Stuttgart every year in April. Everyone who is anyone in VFX comes along - including recruiters. Big VFX houses like Frame Store, MPC, Double Negative all turn up. Polish your animal and creature work, and leave out the cartoony stuff. These guys are looking for photo realism, mostly for live action movies with a lot of animated content.

3. Siggraph
Siggraph takes place in North America every August, moving from Los Angeles to San Diego, and this year fetching up in Vancouver. For animators based in the US, this is the event for you. Everyone shows up; there are panel discussions, industry stands, new technology, and lots of schmoozing.

4. The rest
Other festivals worth attending, if you are in the neighbourhood are: 0ttawa (Canada), Zagreb (Croatia), Hiroshima (Japan),  Holland (Netherlands), Fantoche (Switzerland), Anima Mundi (Brazil), Cinanima (Portugal), and the Brussels Animation festival (Belgium).

Wherever and whenever you go, make sure you have a polished demo reel, and up-to-date CV or resume, and a sack full of business cards. If you don't have business cards, try designing your own at


(Editor's note: for more information on finding work in the animation business, read our post on how to find a job in the animation industry, and check out our post about what not to do at a job interview. Also see our post on starting your own small animation business, learn how to create an invoice, and see how we are helping our students find work through our film co-operative Nano Films.  Download the free Escape Studios Careers in VFX Handbook. Take a look at how can help you find a job, and read our piece about how to survive as a freelance animator. Also, find out what Cinesite look for in a student's demo reel, and read our post on setting up your own animation business.)

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