- Job title:
- Senior Roto and Prep Artist
At the time, Luan was a freelance Junior Compositor, but had been out of work for a few months. “I was doing some retail work to make ends meet,” Luan explains. "Sometimes as a freelancer it’s necessary to do those sorts of jobs in between to get by.”
Luan was also spending the time not working on building her online presence and improving her showreel.
Working in VFX, it’s necessary to have an up-to-date showreel to show companies what you have worked on and what you can do. It’s very important to have something to show them.
While working on her showreel, she noticed that using FCP X was proving challenging. “I didn’t know how to use FCP X very well. I really wanted to learn to use the program properly.”
Being awarded a Diversity Fund bursary meant Luan was able to attend FCP 101: An Introduction to Final Cut Pro X with Transmedia. She found the course very useful and credits being able to take it as part of the reason why she got her current job; as a Senior Roto and Prep Artist with MPC.
“I was writing to companies, linking them to my showreel, my website and my LinkedIn page. It took a while before I got responses, but then I started receiving invitations to interviews. The course definitely helped with that.”
Luan believes the most important thing is to not give up, even when you are in a situation which is tricky. She sees all experiences as something you can learn from. “Even difficult situations can be really valuable,” she explains. “It's character-building."
There are still some challenges around representation and diversity in the VFX industry. Creative Skillset’s Census of the Creative Industries from 2012 found that women make up only 19% of the VFX workforce with Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) representation at only 1%.
However, a mixed-race Chinese and white Irish woman, Luan does not feel like that has worked against her in her job. "There is actually quite a lot of diversity in my industry; especially in Roto and Prep. Occasionally you will see the same faces over and over in the same places and on the same level as you, but mostly I think it’s very diverse."
Luan says she has worked with people of all backgrounds. “The industry is very international; you end up working with people from all over the world.”
Her biggest piece of advice to others is to remember that it sometimes takes some time to find your passion and to get to your dream job. “It’s taken time and effort, but I am very happy with where I am now. At some point I would like to progress to be a Senior Compositor, but it’s important to not rush too much and to not give up when you experience setbacks."
Sometimes you need to re-educate yourself, try something different or go on a course. The important thing is to stick with it.
If you are from an under-represented* group and working in advertising and marketing, animation, fashion and textiles, film, games, interactive media, photo imaging, publishing, radio or VFX, find out if our Diversity fund could help you.
* Women, disabled or BAME.