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Animator

An animator uses sequential photographs of drawings, puppets and models to produce films of varying length for use in advertisements, computer games, pop music videos, etc.

Animators are the creative minds who bring the media to life with their original designs and art work. Using various computer animation and modelling programmes and tools which manipulate aspects such as light, texture and shadow, they produce moving images for a multitude of products and productions seen in films, television, websites and computer games.

The Irish animation industry exports to a number of countries and has gained contracts from some of the world’s biggest animation studios and companies. It continues to grow, with Irish studios producing and owning rights to more and more of their own original material.

Work activities

  • Working in collaboration with directors and other animators to develop storyboards which depict the initial desired outlook of the production.
  • Translating these initial ideas into graphics and animation using sophisticated modelling and animation programmes.
  • Writing and planning scripts for narrative sequences.
  • Budgeting for the production.
  • Editing animation sequences.

Work conditions

Travel: is limited, with work based primarily in a studio.
Working hours: can vary according to deadlines.
Location: animation studios are based in cities around the Republic of Ireland such as Dublin, Kilkenny and Galway. Opportunities expand to a range of companies and studios across the world.

Typical employers

  • Animation studios/companies

Entry requirements

A primary degree in a relevant subject like illustration, 3D/graphic design or computer/computer aided engineering is normally required to enter the profession. A Masters in animation is beneficial; listings of animation courses in the Republic of Ireland can be found on sites such as www.iftn.ie

Further information

Competition is quite high due to the popularity of the animation and film industry, making work experience invaluable but difficult to secure. Look out for short film competitions advertised online or in newspapers and magazines for opportunities to showcase ideas and material.