So I was in Angoulême for three days, at a con of sorts. It was a very interesting trip, so I'm summing it up here, in case anybody's interested in what I do when I'm not doodling/reading/watching stuff !
The meeting was organized by an animation studio, Tigobo.
I don't know if it's okay for me to say so, but damn, I really couldn't stand the Tigobo boss, and I wasn't the only one in this situation. They did, however, a pretty good job otherwise ! I was glad to hear so much about artists and tricks and process, but I'll go back on that later.
I am ashamed to say, though, that I totally dozed off at least once per conference, partly from lack of sleep and partly because I seem to have that kind of sleep reflex when my brain isn't actively working. Dunno. Anyway, here it comes !
The first artist we met was Erik Tiemens. Do you know this guy ? You should know this guy. He worked on Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and many other cool movies. Here's his website : www.watersketch.com/#home
He was here with his wife and daughter, and basically showed us a bunch of his personnal work, and answered a lot of questions. He also showed us a step by step of one of his painting, and the last day he gave us a photoshop demonstration while Stephane Baril gave us tips and tricks on PS CS6 (he basically blew our minds with a lot of cool adds-on AND THE NEW ANIMATION TIMETABLE OH MY GOD IT'S SO MUCH MORE PRACTICAL AND I WAS SO FUCKING HAPPY ABOUT IT I NEED TO GET THIS CS6)
It was actually pretty fun because Erik Tiemens was blowing our mind with his painting while still struggling with the french photoshop AND getting his own mind blown by S. Baril. That was pretty cool.
Also during that demo S.Baril gave away free books he wrote on color with photoshop to people asking good questions, so I got a free book, yaaaay !
I also asked E. Tiemens what he thought of personal work, and he said it was not only necessary and healthy, but the most important thing for an artist. He then explained that a good school wasn't only a school teaching you thing, but teaching you to love learning. He won my eternal respect with that answer. I was really thrilled to meet him.
The second artist we met was Robert Valley. Again, you should totally know this guy, here is one of his latest project :
Isn't it freakishly cool ? I think it is. I'm never getting over his art style, and we told him over and over how cool it is.
Though, he says he's broke as fuck, and unlike E. Tiemens who thought that "people who are good will get noticed no matter what", he told us that getting work was hard, as in, really hard. He showed us a bunch of his art, another short he was currently working on and had not leaked on the internet yet, so we were pretty excited about it !
I had to translate everything to my classmates afterward. He apparently talked way faster than E. Tiemens and with a little accent, and the sound on the short wasn't so good, so it was hard to follow. And then my classmate asked me to ask him their questions, and I felt every bit like an official translator. R. Valley was very cool about it, and I think he went for drinks with a bunch of students after that.
Then we had a FX animation Workshop with Schung Lee, who is a Gobelins graduate and currently works on a project named Funky Poulp, a short movie. He was kind enough to show us WIP, and explain how he worked, he even named every single animator on the project (and I really enjoy when the creator takes time to thank everybody in the team.)
It was very interesting, he gave me some tips on animating water and how to get an interesting background even when there is apparently nothing interesting about the scene.
That was also immensely interesting. (I wish I could have gone to E. Tiemens' workshop too, but it was going on at the same time so we had to pick.)
So this con was very interesting. We stayed at some animation student's place, and got involved in other animation students' party, met a painter/comic book artist/ background artist on two animation movie, so outside the con, it was very interesting too.
I must say all these talks about art and animation and the enormous amount of information and socialities have quite exhausted me, but it was a very worthwile trip.
Well, maybe if we had paid the full price I wouldn't be saying that (it was really expensive and for such a price we could have expected some more stuff, such as, for example, a translator.), but we didn't, so yeah ! The only bad note was really the Tigobo boss. I should still thank him for organizing the event because it was a real good opportunity. But yeah.