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Creative Spotlight: John

What did you study at university?

So, I studied 3D Animation and Games at Middlesex University. I liked trying every part of 3D animation, whether it was in film or games. In my second year, I had to specialise in one field specifically and I ended up focusing on environment modelling. It was very cool. It’s hard to get a job in. You can go into visual effects or into film or games, it just depends on how stylised your work is because obviously something unique might not work for games but could work really well in certain types of animated movies. I was looking more into games and stuff. During lockdown, I was applying to a bunch of games studios but none of them had positions open. What was really interesting in my final year was that I got way more feedback and responses from gaming studios but the retail jobs I was applying for never really got back to me.

What is the job you are aiming for?

Ideally, I would like to work in the gaming industry. I have researched the virtual effects industry as it looks really fun. But ideally, I would be looking at an environment or character artist.

So, what are you up to right now?

A few friends and I from university have started our own games studio to try to make a game while we are here. We just started production on the game. The game is a VR game about West African soldiers that were forced to fight for the Allies during WW2. They were sent to what was Burma (Myanmar) at the time and it’s a decisions-based, historical VR game. There’s eight of us so I’m excited to see where it goes.

How did COVID-19 impact your post-graduation plans?

I think it just made it really hard to get a job. Usually, from what I’ve seen, jobs in the game industry come and go pretty often because people move to different studios to work on different projects so there are typically always positions that need filling. That just hasn’t happened this year. The plan was to stay in London, but I came back because the situation wasn’t getting any better. There aren’t a lot of jobs in the field of gaming I’m interested in so that’s why I’ve basically made my own studio.

In third year, one of the things we would do is put together a small version of a game and then we would go to a gaming conference in South London called EGX where you could show your game to people like Playstation and Xbox but COVID got in the way that as well.

Any hobbies you are enjoying at the moment?

Playing games, obviously! It’s primary research. I do a bit of kickboxing and football.

Check out John’s work:

We particularly love John's Panda Hut Environment! - check it out:

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