20+ years of professional motion graphics/design.
I've been using After Effects professionally for over 20 years and would probably get severe withdrawal symptons if I ever spent too long away from it.
With its superb integration with After Effects and excellent motion graphic capabilites, using Cinema 4D was always a natural progression for me. As a 3D package, it offers a broad set of powerful tools whilst never compromising the creative process.
How do. So my name is Jamie and I’m a freelance motion graphics artist based in Sheffield, UK. Or a motion designer if you're that way inclined ;-)
In many ways it feels like I’ve been involved in motion graphics since 1986, when I was just a small 10-year-old kid. My mum who worked at a local TV repair and rental shop was able to feed my appetite for all things computer, with incredible discounts on cheap ZX Spectrum games. However, my much beloved computer was never just a game machine for me. From the day I got it, I always saw it as a mind blowing tool for creating stuff. Anyone familiar with AMX mouse (the first art package I ever used, written for a computer that had a massive 48Kb of ram, along with a three-buttoned brick of a mouse), will know that compared to modern day wizardry, it was very easy to blow my little 10-year-old mind. However, the seed was planted.
As technology grew and developed, I was there, unwittingly but happily growing with it. My ZX Spectrum eventually got replaced with an Amiga 500, and all of a sudden, rather than painstakingly clicking each individual pixel on and off to slowly draw my *cough* masterpieces, I was suddenly able to do things like create in glorious 256 colours (shout out to the old school Deluxe Paint users out there) and it wasn’t long before I was creating my first ever animation; a short, looped piece that showed the plight of a simple character doing a little, natty dance before turning round, dropping his pants, and plopping into them. High art, yeah?
So the path was already set. I somehow managed to gather up enough examples (I excluded any plopping action) of my artwork to get a portfolio together and land myself a work experience placement at EA Games, where I was lucky enough to work on my first ever game, Desert Strike on the Amiga (I did the scene of the poor fella eating grime off the prison bars if you're actually interested... What do you mean those bars aren't exactly Fort Knox?! Shhh shuddup). From there I managed to get more holiday work during college and it eventually lay down a path of them agreeing to sponsor me through my university degree (Software Systems for the Arts and Media).
So around this time I was also falling in love with music videos. Music had always been a significant part of my creativity. One of my earliest memories is seeing this animation for Yusuf (formerly Cat) Stevens' Moonshadow. I remember feeling so bewildered and delighted by it, but without even knowing what it was. It took years later for me to re-discover it and finally find out what the hell that thing was that I kept remembering. I actually thought it might have been a vivid and surreal dream. Anyway, I'm not sure how significant all that is, but whenever I fell in love with certain songs, I'd always spend time just listening to the music, without distractions and, well... imagine stuff. I still do. So back then when my dad decided that he needed Sky Sports too much in his life, we got a satellite box, and along with it MTV. It was more than just a music channel to me, it was a pipeline to a lot of weird and wonderful visual treats. VHS tapes became my mixtapes. I would buy 8-hour long tapes and set the timer to record from midnight, so I could later fast forward through them, looking for hidden, strange gems. Thinking about it, it was probably a good job I grew up in the era of MTV and not the internet.
Through my degree and then eventual employment with EA Games, I developed a passion for graphic design, UX and most significantly, motion graphics. Adobe After Effects became a cornerstone and the sense of creative freedom it gave me, kept me in good stead for many years. Since then I have dabbled between full employment for computer game companies and freelancing as a motion graphics artist. My most recent venture allowing me to finally obtain, learn and master Cinema 4D, along with the amazingly fun and powerful X-Particles, as I continue to feed the same childhood passions...
...and try to pay a mortgage ;-)
tl;dr format: I love motion graphics and music videos.