Following last month’s New Year, New Job 2014 special, Develop will be bringing you more game industry professional to explain what their jobs involve and offer key advice to help you follow in their footsteps.
Associate art director
Daniel Oxford, associate art director at Codemasters, describes the path you should take if your goal is to become a video game artist.
How would someone become an associate art director?
The role can essentially be split into two specific groups, depending on the particular requirement for the team. You can work towards this level, and beyond, either via a management route or a more talent related path. In my case here at Codemasters, it’s very much the latter; progressing from junior artist up to senior/principal, before stepping up to art direction in order to widen my sphere of influence within the project.
What qualifications and/or experience do you need?
A great art background, with a stellar portfolio and a passion for communicating your vision. Really for this level, demonstrating a defining involvement in the visual style, direction and quality of a number of triple-A games is going to be essential.
If you’re interviewing someone to join your team, what do you look for?
Talent and enthusiasm are the key – along with, for more senior roles, experience. For any art roles, a gorgeous portfolio is always going to be a major advantage.
What opportunities are there for career progression?
It’s a great career path – from the initial artist level, getting stuck into the details of game art, right up to senior art director, controlling the creative vision for all visual aspects of a complex triple-A production.
Why choose to follow a career in your field?
It’s seriously exciting stuff, the level of visual feedback and interest you can both see and direct, working with the right people, can be awe inspiring. There’s nothing quite like reading a review, or hearing a group of gamers, praising the graphics of your game – it’s incredibly satisfying.