My 3D internship at Framestore

Duration
4 mins

Looking to gain some experience in 3D with an internship? We chatted with 3D animation grad, Keegan McDougall, about his journey as a Framestore Launchpad intern (and the many perks that come with it).


My expectations

I wanted to take this environments internship at Framestore because I like creating organic assets like trees and animals. I also wanted to get 3D job experience and learn how VFX companies function, and to start practicing skills and gathering insights from the various departments. I made a point of walking around and asking the texture leads all the questions I had before officially started in my role. Working in textures is my dream job, so if things pan out and I get a job in that department, it would honestly be the best thing for me.

The work

Most days I've been working on shots. All the shots in 3D have been made and tracked so what's in the 3D software is the same angles that the camera had when it was filmed. I hide everything you don’t see in the frame, so it doesn't take as much memory to render the image.

In the last couple days, I've also been working on a reproduction of a building in Manhattan, which was surprising. I didn't expect to do such a large prop like a full building; I figured I would be modeling lamp posts or rocks.


Learnings

There's a bunch of different techniques I've learned since starting here. For example, I learned to project textures or colors to make an asset look like it's detailed. I've heard about this technique before but never tried it.

We're also using Linux. I had to learn a new OS which was tricky at first, but it's pretty straightforward now. Those are probably the two things I've learned that were the most significant challenges. I'm still learning new techniques daily.


My personal project



Framestore allows us to work on a personal project during our internship, and it is supervised by a mentor. I’ve been assigned to lead environment TD, Eve Chauvet who's been really helpful in helping me progress. My project partner and I are making a post-war/apocalypse building: I’ve done the modeling, texturing and layout. For modeling, I’ve created a lot of assets that help fill the scene, like a crane, cement barriers, and manholes. The next step is to create textures for all of these assets. In doing this project, I’ve learned a lot regarding look dev and lighting that is helping me in my journey right now.




The perks

There are so many perks to working at Framestore, including the food kind: free cereal and toast, bagels on Wednesdays, and Friday-evening meetings with beer.




We’re also treated to special outings. We recently finished our day as usual at around 6 PM and met at the park, where Bubble Balls were waiting for us. We played a few serious games of Bubble Soccer, but most of the time, we were basically a bubble mosh-pit.




And on one Saturday, Framestore rented the entirety of La Ronde, a Montreal amusement park, from 9 AM to 11 PM, so we had the entire place to ourselves without waiting in lines. We rode the roller coasters and feasted on all-you-can-eat and drink burritos, beer and sodas.


One of the family



Overall, I wasn't expecting it to be so cool. I knew it would be awesome because it's such a great company, but I wasn’t expecting the people to be so open and down-to-earth. They really treat you like you’re one of their good friends.



Got a question about Launchpad or a VFX internship? Let us know in the comments below or contact Framestore! Stay tuned for Keegan’s final thoughts on his internship on Life in 3D.

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