Counting the days until Career Camp begins? Same here! Today we're introducing you to Inês Coimbra (Assets Artist) and Sara Batista (R&D Developer) who got hired by Platige! If you have a Career Camp success story you'd like to share with us, reach out to be featured and send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Hello Inês and Sara! Thank you for sharing your stories with the Tribe! First question: how did you first hear about Career Camp and what made you decide to apply?
Inês: I heard about Career Camp through THU's official social media channels. As I have been involved with THU since 2013, I always keep a close eye on new initiates that I can be a part of, and Career Camp sounded like an awesome event! So I applied for a ticket in its first ever edition and just kept reapplying every edition since then. Career Camp has filled a huge gap for me, this event has helped me with keeping constant track of my progress and to take accountability for leveling up my own skills - and that's exactly why I have been present for all the editions.
Sara: I first heard about THU back in 2021, during an RTP news report and I started following the activities and events since then!! :) A few months later, André found my profile on Linkedin, we scheduled a coffee and during our wonderful conversation, he introduced me to Career Camp. I didn't have the possibility to attend the THU main event in 2021, so when André offered me the opportunity to attend Career Camp 2022, I didn't hesitate to take it! :)
How did you prepare for the event?
Inês: Portfolio wise, I made a clear plan for my work - I selected specific concepts I loved and turned them into 3D pieces; I made a list of all the things I wanted to fix on my existing work; and I tried to add more professional work. I also asked artist friends of mine for feedback on my portfolio, and that really helped me, because it made me aware of problems I wasn't seeing there before. After that, I worked on my THU profile, to make sure it looked as good as my Artstation and Linkedin pages - and started applying for mentorships and job applications.
Sara: To prepare for the event, firstly I made sure I had my work published and accessible online. In my particular case, I was already developing my personal website, to aggregate all my links and projects. For my portfólio, I gathered all my project's repositories, made sure they were all organized and clear - artstation included. I completed my profile on Linkedin and spent a good amount of hours creating my CV. I wanted it to clearly convey who I was, what I aimed for and show all the links to my social media, website, gitlab and github. This way, I had everything ready to send quickly to anyone interested. Lastly, I reflected deeply about my goals for the event: What am I looking for in this phase of my life? What do I aim to accomplish with the event?
You got hired for Platige Image. What approach did you use to stand out during your interviews?
Inês: My 1st interview with Platige Image was during Career Camp, which was a great experience! Pre-interview, I prepared by studying the company and to familiarize myself with the projects they were working on. I already knew I would be asked questions about my work, so knowing my portfolio very well was super important - from knowing how I built my assets, all the techniques I used, how I created materials, and so on. After the 1st interview, I kept in touch with the recruiter and kept a close eye on any new opportunities available. I think my efforts really paid off, because a few months later, I actually met the Platige team for an in-person interview at THU Main Event - and we already knew each other from Career Camp, which was a wonderful icebreaker! For the 2nd interview I took the exact same approach, however this time around, I was able to show a lot more professional work I had recently done, and that I believe made a big difference. After that, I had 2 more interviews - for both of them, I just kept studying more and more about the company. I also tried to take as many notes as I could about what had been asked in the previous interviews, to prepare myself for the next round. This whole process took a couple months, but it really allowed me to know the company very well in depth, even before having an offer.
Sara: Funny enough, I had a group mentorship with Platige Image during Career Camp, 2022 edition, but I only applied and was actually hired as an R&D Developer for the company a few months later, at THU main event 2022! ;) For the interview, my approach was simply to be myself, be real and share my interests, passions and projects. I reflected a lot before going and prepared some base questions to ask during the interview. Since I had my portfólio organized and ready to show, during the interview's process I felt very peaceful and prepared. At that point, there was nothing else to do but to talk with the teams and see if we could be a great match to each other. And thankfully, with Platige, I felt an instant connection from the start and it ended up leading me to a great opportunity ehehe!! :)
Could you tell us a bit about your role at Platige?
Inês: I love being an Assets Artist - it's definitely a great job and it's exactly what I have always wanted to do! Every day at Platige Image is different, depending on the project we are working for - but that's also very exciting. In the Commercials Department we mainly get to work on smaller, more fast paced projects, which gives me the chance to work on several assets in a short amount of time. I really love how Platige is such a big company, but at the same time it feels like a tiny home - I have met some incredible people during these past 10 months, including the CEO, Karol Zbikowski. I have also had the pleasure to go to Creator's Circle and to represent Platige Image, which was a really big honor for me.
Sara: Being an R&D Developer at Platige involves supporting the Unreal Engine Pipeline, which briefly means: researching and testing the newly released Unreal Engine features and plugins; preparing technical documentation; conducting training sessions for the artists; developing tools and features to enhance the pipeline and provide technical support to the projects and teams. During my personal experience, I've been able to use both my technical and artistic sides combined, which I love ehehe!! :)
What would you say to someone looking to get into your line of work?
Inês: If you want to become an Assets Artist, as Walt Disney once said "If you can dream it, you can do it". Being an Assets Artist is awesome, because we are responsible for so much of what makes a show/project incredible - we are building the aesthetics of the props that will help drive a story. However, this industry is really tough, especially when you are starting out, so it's super important for you to maintain focused, to keep working hard on your portfolio, to keep asking for feedback from anyone you can talk to who is working in the industry, to keep elevating your skills by expanding your knowledge, and to attend industry events - your success will come from taking all these steps.
Sara: In my personal opinion, the best skills to train to become an R&D Developer are adaptability, creativity and fast learning. Technology advances super quickly! Each update brings new features and we need to learn, adapt and incorporate them into our custom tools and projects. We need to find creative solutions to overcome production challenges and push boundaries. Also, communication is key! Learning how to communicate your ideas and thoughts clearly is a must! ;)
What advice do you have for attendees of the Career Camp this year?
Inês: I think Career Camp this year couldn't come at a better time! In a time where the industry is going through so many changes, so much negativity, I think it's crucial for us to come together. I see it as a great time to elevate everyone's skills, to attend mentorships and to have the unique opportunity of connecting with amazing companies. My main advice would be to try to learn what companies are looking for, both skills and portfolio wise, so you have a clear plan and know exactly what you have to do to land the job you want. Also, use this as a time to meet with other like minded artists, that you would not have the opportunity to meet otherwise - you never know where that might lead you!
Sara: Make the most out of it, trully!! Applying for job offers is just one part of this great event, there's a lot to do and learn during these days. Give it a go, reflect on your personal goals and objectives, tailor your portfolio, apply for the mentorships, attend the talks. Prepare yourself to receive feedback, digest it and incorporate it into your work. Please don't be discouraged if you don't get any mentorships or that dream job offer, it's all part of the journey and it all comes down to timing. Engage with other tribe members!! Believe me, you will find amazing support and precious tips within the Tribe!! ;) And enjoy it!! Allow yourself to feel inspired and to inspire others!!! <3