Fortiche: Can you tell us about your career ?
I started my career as a crowd animator in Illumination Macguff. Even though I always had a soft spot for CG animated films more than any other form of animation, I moved to London to work in VFX for 5 years, where I worked at Framestore, ILM, MPC and DNEG. Even though VFX work wasn't my favourite, I learnt quite a bit about realistic movement and acting and developed a quick workflow.
But my love for CG animated high quality content would always end up winning, and I'm glad I joined Fortiche, which for me is the perfect mix of realism and stylization. I've said it before and I'll say it again for the record, Fortiche are the Kings and Queens of good taste. Now let my colleagues think I'm a suck-up.
F: Why did you choose this career path?
I did my very first animation in university in 2D, pencil on paper, a lot of paper, and I firstly fell in love with the illusion of movement, the fact that these separate drawings in pieces of paper could actually move in front of my eyes. But after I pursued this passion and continued my studies in 3D, I then fell in love with the acting and the illusion that this puppet can become a character, with thoughts and feelings. Some say it's a bit of a “god complex” animators have, but I think it's more of a portrayal of all the moments and emotions I've observed throughout my life. I only know that these puppets can portray real characters because their emotions are made through a lens of real people in real situations. And for me trying to recognize and identify real human emotions and their specific representations in each person is one of the most challenging and rewarding things. More than a “god complex”, animation is the characterization of human experience. And once you really think about this, who wouldn't fall in love with it?
F: What is your role on the project or at Fortiche?
I'm a senior animator, producing the movement and acting for each character in my shots.
F: How long have you been working with Fortiche?
One amazing year in Las Palmas ;)
F: What is your best memory at Fortiche or do you have an anecdote to share with us?
I think my best memory at Fortiche was the realization of what I was about to work on and with whom. I started quite late on Arcane, which means that there were TONS of amazing work already produced by the talented team that started all of this. And watching those finished episodes was a daunting yet incredibly amazing experience. I really felt like rubbing shoulders with the royalty. I'm glad I still am!
But an anecdote might be tricker, because there are so many! So I'll just say that lunch times in Las Palmas studio can be quite entertaining! The conversations vary wildly from politically important, to what's the best method of painting one's nails. It was once suggested that if we just put a microphone in the middle of the table and release the conversation through a podcast, we could become famous! Conversations are lively, often with a lot of random and fun "facts" that turn out to be really just a poorly remembered click bait titles we once read, but even though we speculate about everything in the world, there is almost an unspoken rule that we don't really google anything to check. It might be that all we're talking about is rubbish, but it might also be that we're discovering the meaning of life. Who can know for sure.