Experiencing the animation industry on an international study tour

By Lara Berkley/ Animation
Read about Bachelor of Creative Industries graduate Lara Berkley's experience on an international study tour to award-winning animation studios and schools throughout Europe.

The Absolutely Animation Study Tour was, without a doubt, one of the best things I experienced in my three years of university.

In summary, it was a brilliant chance to explore the art I love while surrounded by fellow creatives and be inspired first-hand by the best and brightest in the industry.

I learned not only about animation and art but also about the people who run and are behind everything the industry does. The work, and the creatives themselves, inspired me more than I could have hoped and I am grateful to have discovered that on this tour.

When we arrived in France, I was comfortable with my ability to draw, though was nervous about starting the workshops at Gobelins as I felt that my 3D skills would be lacking. However, after a day at Gobelins, animating and talking with our supervisor Maria, I began to realise my fears were for nothing.

I was more capable than I thought. The people around me were super encouraging and supportive, which made continuously polishing easier.

I started to keep an eye out for how other animators treated each other from then on and found similar situations in the Gobelin classrooms, La Cachette, Mifa sessions and even at the animators picnics we were invited to.

Creators, I’ve found, love to work as a community and love to help.

I’ve experienced this work ethic first-hand due to the friends I was able to make on tour. These new friends inspired me to apply for Animated Film Slate, where I am worked with them on two animated student films.

If it weren’t for the bonds I made over tour and the knowledge I was able to pick up, I wouldn’t have already started a portfolio to be proud of nor have the small but growing network of contacts from around the world.

Animators are passionate about making things and sharing them and I’m really glad that I am going into such a welcoming industry.