BGSU Computer Art Alumni Survey


New Fall 2003
1) (OPTIONAL) Name:
Deneva Goins

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? August of 2002

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B: I just finished graduate school

PART B: Graduate School:

11) Where are you attending Graduate School and what degree are you earning?
I graduated on September 22, 2003 from the Hogeschool Voor De Kunst Utrecht (Utrecht school of the Arts) here in the Netherlands. The degree I earned is the equivalent of a United States 'Master of Arts' Degree accredited by the Open University of England. The official name is European Master of Media Arts (EMMA). My focus was Interactive Multimedia.

12) How many schools did you apply to?
I applied to 2 schools, and one art colony only in the Netherlands. I suggest applying to more schools though.. and visit them if you can.. see if you like the 'vibe' first.

13) What did you include in your application?
Each school needed different materials. I included all the required materials including the application, CV, portfolio CDROM, slides of art, passport photos, copy of passport, recommendation letters, motivation letter, hmmm theres a lot to include.. forgive me for not remembering it all (this was more than a year ago).

14) Are you receiving any financial assistance?
I applied for the standard graduate student loan for $18,500 which was more than enough to attend school here. You can attend school in Europe with a US based loan so long as the school is recognized by the US as a valid degree issuing institution. Dont expect any loan money from the governments here though, unless its a Fullbright scholarship or something. (Lets not forget that the dollar has gone down considerably in value compared to the euro and these details will affect the value of the loan money you receive if you are in another country!)

15) Is graduate school "hard"?
I think graduate school is only 'hard' if your heart is not in it. People should only go to graduate school if they are prepared to work hard, like it, and not expect anyone in the sidelines to be out there cheering them on. The motivation and the passion must come from within. Well, considering the fact of being in a new country, I think the adjustment was difficult but manageable. Culture, language, a totally different school system, and technology differences are all things I encountered here.

16) Are you glad you chose to go to grad school?
Yes, especially when the economy isnt so great, might as well take the time and get some more education.. it only makes you more competitive. School is never a waste and when the economy is yucky like now, the interest rates on student loans goes DOWN, so now is the time to borrow or invest!

17) What are your goals after grad school?
I graduated about 1 month ago, so I am looking for work here in Amsterdam and in LA, California. London is also an option, but not one I have seriously looked into, (as I prefer the weather in California :))

Of course, being in a foreign country right now, I need a work permit to legally be employed, so I have applied with the Dutch government to become self employed. Curretnly I am writing my business plan to prove that I will be able to support myself adequately.

I know a lot of people here and barter my services in exchange for their services. For example, I give a website or design of sorts in exchange for advertising in a magazine, on the radio, or on TV. This is a good way to become exposed as a freelancer. Otherwise, I am freelancing to make money.

My goal with the freelance work is to save up enough money in the next 9 months to relocate to LA (Venice Beach area) with the first 3 months of rent paid (about $3500) and explore the industry there. I talk on yahoo messenger and communicate via email with companies and people to get information about the culture and job opportunities there. My goal is to be there in September of next year or sooner.

11) Are you happy? Mostly, yes.. though living from client to client is extremely scary business when you have bills to pay. Freelancing was a good way for me to see what I am worth!

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
Hmmm, I would have managed my money better during grad school. I would have taken another vacation during the year (preferably Thailand) or just traveled more.

13) Words of advice?
I highly suggest that you KNOW YOURSELF WELL and what you want before picking up moving to another country or state for a job or for school. Many people are used to their current surroundings and often compare themselves with those surroundings to assess their personal value.

Unless you plan on staying in the same city for your entire life it is important to know that when in a new environment such as another city or country, you will have nothing to compare yourself with as everything is totally unfamiliar to you. You are the only thing that remains constant in your world.

You must be confident, self motivated, know what you want, and have a reasonable plan of getting there. Its difficult/impossible to make a plan on getting somewhere in your life if you dont even know where your going.

So 'know what you want' and do what gives you that 'passionate' motivated feeling, no matter what anyone tells you. If you dont know, do some exploring, try some new things, and feel around for what you like. It is worth it to take some time and see what makes you happy rather than push yourself in the wrong direction.

Also, dont let relationships of any sorts get in the way of your happiness. This could be boy/girlfriends, or even your parents. YOU are the most important person in your world above EVERYONE else. DONT FORGET THAT! You are the one who will live with the decisions you make... not the others, so its wise to listen to the opinions of your loved ones, but everything you choose to do must be for you and yourself alone...not a compromise of what someone else wants for you! YOU are responsible for your happiness and the decisions you make.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
And oh yea.. let me mention it is TOTALLY possible to become an artist such as a painter or something, you just have to find your audience. I have been living in Amsterdam for the last year and a half and know that things can be different inthe world of the creative professional! I have met fashion designers, actresses, writers, singers, young successful painters, etc.

Maybe it doesn't seem realistic where you are now, but PLACE is everything and if you are motivated just DO what you want. DOnt wait for someone to discover you and invest in you. You may need to work side jobs to finance your dream, but that may be what you need to invest to get you in the right place. Companies hire people who are passionate, motivated, and willing to go the extra mile because they LOVE what they do, not people who work simply to make money. You may need to move, but anything is possible, even acting, singing, writing, television work.. etc.

22) List your accomplishments (to be published):
Please see the attached CV for scholarship accomplishments, degrees and others.

My new website is not up yet, but it will be here again: http://www.deneva.net
email: deneva@sugarpuppy.com or deneva@deneva.net


New Fall 2003
1) (OPTIONAL) Name:
Lacie Garnes

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? December 2001

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B: Yes...working on a MFA

PART B: Graduate School:

11) Where are you attending Graduate School and what degree are you earning?
Working on an MFA in Art and Technology Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

12) How many schools did you apply to?
Four total: two well known art schools, two smaller state universities with fairly good art programs. Also, at two schools, I applied to two different programs...so really...6 total applications were sent out.

13) What did you include in your application?
Each school needed different materials. All required slides and other documentation of work as well as professional references. Other application materials included resume, artist statement, letter of intent, slide list, and official applications for the MFA programs.

14) Are you receiving any financial assistance?
I did receive a scholarship at SAIC which covers about a third of my tuition this year. I have taken out government loans to cover the remaining balance.

15) Is graduate school "hard"?
I would not consider it "hard". It is challenging and very rewarding. I'm given an opportunity to research my interests and pursue my ideas more openly. I am still adjusting to this new freedom a bit. Self-discipline is not always my strongest attribute.

16) Are you glad you chose to go to grad school?
I was out of school about a year and half before entering this Master's program. In that time frame, I jumped from one horrible job to the next (about 10 in all), none of which were directly related to my BFA degree. It was rather miserable and I found myself exhausted and frustrated. Making art became secondary to paying bills, which leads to an unhappy artist. Now it is once again my focus and I would say I am very glad to be doing this.

17) What are your goals after grad school?
I wanted to get an MFA with the intention of one day teaching. I think that's still my goal, yet, parts of the "industry" are also appealing.

11) Are you happy? I am happy in terms of my educational choices.

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
I would love to have had a full tuition waiver. I'll be deeply in debt when I'm finished.

13) Words of advice?
Know what you want and, very simply, take each step toward that goal. Applying for Grad school was very scary, but it really just took doing the next step in the process. Set aside time and know your deadlines. It was a huge help to have professors at BG look over my application materials. They are the ones that decide who makes it into their Grad program, so who better to ask for help? They know what programs are looking for.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Whatever it is you decide to do, I hope you find happiness. It's so important.

22) List your accomplishments (to be published):
2003
Work accepted by jury for the Annual Findlay Art League Photography exhibition. Findlay, Ohio.
2002
Best of Show, Salon Des Refuses Annual Juried Exhibition. 21 North Gallery. Toledo, Ohio
Toledo Area Artists Juried Annual Exhibition. The Toledo Museum of Art. Toledo, Ohio
First Place-Two Dimensional Art. Undergraduate Exhibition, BGSU. Bowling Green, Ohio.
James W. Strong Award for Excellence in Studio Art. Undergraduate Exhibition, BGSU.
Entity, IMMEDIA. International Digital Art Exhibition. Ann Arbor, MI.
Work selected to travel to Los Angeles to represent Bowling Green State University, School of Art to acquire funding and donations from distinguished donors and alumni.
2001
Millennium Demographics: Being Other. Undergraduate Student Exhibition. BGSU
The Toledo Area Artists juried art exhibition. Toledo, Ohio.
Salon Des Refuses art exhibition. Toledo, Ohio.
The Findlay Art League's Juried Photography exhibition. Findlay, Ohio.
2000
The Findlay Art League's Juried Photography exhibition. Findlay, Ohio.
Undergraduate Scholarship received for excellence in art.


New Fall 2003
1) (OPTIONAL) Name:

2) Did you graduate? If so, when?
Yes, December 2001

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B
No.

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
I am currently a crash test photographer with the Ohio Transportation Research Center.

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
I was a full-time, freelance web designer for two years, of which I still dabble in somewhat.

6) What did you have to do to get this job? What was your job search like?
I stumbled across a job board when perusing their web site. Even though I had no photography background, most of the skills I learned in computer art is what got me the job.

7) What is a typical work day like?
With this job, the term "typical day" doesn't apply. Different professions all need to work in tandem for a successful test (engineers, mechanics, photography, etc.) or it doesn't work at all. A day can last for 8 hours or 18 hours. My job consists of setting up all necessary high-speed digital and film cameras for the following day's test. I am in charge of all photographic documentation of the vehicle before it gets shattered into a million pieces the next day.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
40+....emphasis on +

9) How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
My "play time" has turned into a really exciting second-income business involving the buying and selling of LEGO bricks and sets online. Over the last six months or so, I have gone back to my childhood days when building with LEGO bricks was all I wanted to do. I have very recently began creating sculptures and mosaics out of LEGO bricks. It keeps me busy before and after work, but it's also a whole lot of fun.

10) Do you still make your art?
Most of my art has shifted to the whole LEGO thing. I still use Photoshop religiously when planning out LEGO projects. I began a new computer animation project about a year ago, and have made some decent strides with it, but as unfortunate as it sounds, time really is money, and my CG projects end up getting put on hold. You just have to set your priorities.

11) Are you happy?

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
I don't think I would change anything. The progression of my life from college to now has all been about good, thought-out choices that I made at the right times. And most of those choices - not to mention most of the experiences - were a direct result of my college career. 

13) Words of advice?
Speaking from my own circumstances, the only advice I can give is to not be disappointed if post-collegiate life shoves a fork in your road and forces you to go in a direction you didn't plan for. If you get the job you always wanted, then congratulations are in order. But if you don't, just take each day as it comes. If you use your mind properly, and make good decisions along the way, that fork in your road may just lead you to something great.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Whatever you end up doing in life, make sure it's something you truly love doing. And for all you digital art majors, even if you don't get a computer art job, keep computer art a part of your life. It's too much fun not to.

22) List your accomplishments (to be published):
Spring 2001
Best of Show and First Place Computer Art Annual Undergraduate Art Exhibition BGSU

November 2001
2nd Annual Future Animators of the Future Video and Animation Traveling Festival Boston, Massachusetts New York, New York San Francisco, California

April 26, 2002
Animation was shown on TechTV's computer animation show "Eye Drops", which continues to show in episode repeats.

Today
I have a very good, well-paying, full-time job
I have a very fun, well-paying almost full time hobby
I have a smile on my face :)


1) (OPTIONAL) Name: Mike McKenzie

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? May 2001

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B No

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
I am Director of Marketing for Evolution Studios a web design firm that is based in West Palm Beach, Florida.

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
Just this one, but the first three months I was a multimedia and web developer. I was also an intern at Mirror Images in BG while I attended the University.

6) What did you have to do to get this job?
I sent a resume, a week later called for an interview, after that I had the interview, and then the next day I sent a thank you letter. Then a week later they hired me.

7) What is your day to day like?
Pretty laid back I get in about 9:00 am and leave at 5:00. We are developing a new multimedia CD-ROM package, so currently during the day I research our market to try and determine how well the product will do. Then later in the day I meet with my boss and our marketing group and we discuss our research. If we develop the CD then I will spend my days contacting and meeting with potential clients.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
35 to 40. If anyone is looking for a laid back work environment, then I highly suggest looking in the Florida area.

9) How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
I would say about 6 to 8 hrs weekly. I am addicted to golf, so I play 18 on the weekend and there is a course next to my work so I go to the driving range on my lunch breaks. This is not half as much playtime as when I was in school and it is a lot harder to come by now. Enjoy it while you can.

10) Do you still make your art?
I would say that I still start making my art, then something always comes up and it gets pushed to the side. So, truthfully no. I do plan to (plan being the keyword) start painting again in the future.

11) Are you happy?
Yes, very. It takes a month or so for the realization that college is over to set in, but after you get over that everything is great.

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
I would have taken as many different types of classes as I could fit in my schedule. I got hired for this job because my company wanted someone with design and development knowledge to meet with potential clients, rather than hire a marketing major. One marketing class would have really helped.

But, honestly and most important I wouldn't have spent as much time in the CAVE lab. You are only at BG for a short time, so enjoy that time with your friends. You'll miss them when you graduate. Don't flunk out with them, but get out of that damn dungeon and have some fun while your still in college.

13) Words of advice?
Start sending your resumes now! I put it off and really got worried when I didn't find a job right away. It ended up taking me 5 months, so get them out ASAP. And sent as many as you possibly can.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Don't get discouraged. The "real world" is not as bad as people like to make you think. Every interview I went to employers were surprised by how strong the BG Computer Art curriculum is. So, you have the skills. Just get your resumes out there.

I remember when I took senior sem this survey really helped me deal with the stress of graduation, so I tried to cover everything that was worrying me at that time. If anyone would like to ask me any questions (web, multimedia, or 3-d) feel free to email me at: mckenzi@evcom.net. If I can't answer your question we have ten other artist and developers here at Evolution Studios that most likely will.


1) (OPTIONAL) Name: John Niederkohr

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? Yes (December 2000)

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B NO

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
I am the Director of Alternative Traffic for Rawhide Internet Services in Toledo Oh. Home of SearchBoss.com

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
None. About 2 months from Graduation I found this job on monster. 2 interviews, one with The VP of Biz Dev, and I got the job.

6) What did you have to do to get this job?
I had an average portfolio with printed material, resume, cover letter, etc. But they really like the creative sections of my portfolio.

7) What is your day to day like?
Very fast paced with different tasks around every corner.

8) How many hours do you work a week? 40-45

9) How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
Weekends only. When I get home from work I help my wife with my son Luke. By the time he goes to sleep its 9:00 and about time for me to go to bed.

10) Do you still make your art?
Unfortunately No. I am now in Business Development and Sales which mainly pertains to E- commerce. I initially started this job as a creative design person for the site but quickly got moved to sales. I wish there were more hours in the day to pursue my artistic talents. Many things about my person has changed over the past few months. Therefore I think that once I do return to my art there will be such a substantial change that it may be hard to compare to my past works. But I can't wait to see what happens with it.

11) Are you happy? YES

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything? 30 hours in a day instead of 24.

13) Words of advice?
Don't let anyone intimidate you about graduating from college and going into the "real world". This is the greatest thing that I can experience right now, along with my family. I have total control over my future. Sure things could change any second but I know that there is something else out there to fulfill my day. Especially returning to my creative self.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Good Luck, and hope to see you out there some day...


1) (OPTIONAL) Name: Matt Hecht

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? May 2000

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B

Not in grad school yet, starting in the spring of 2002

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
I am currently working in special operations, Air Force

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
Worked as an illustrator for SPIN Magazine, and then moved onto freelance stuff (CD covers, posters).

6) What did you have to do to get this job?
Sign a dotted line!

7) What is your day to day like?
Quite adventurous.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
On call 24 hours a day, so it varies.

9) How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
Well, since my art has sort of moved from my job to my hobby (for now) I guess drawing and stuff is my play..

10) Do you still make your art?
As much as I can, though I don't have the access I’d like to a computer.

11) Are you happy?
I would rather be somewhere else, but I look at it this way - I have plenty of time down the line to do my art and be happy. For now I'll do my job and make money!

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
I wish I would have focused more on 2d computer art than 3d.

13) Words of advice?
Don't think that getting that dream job is impossible. Just put your mind to it and you can go far in life.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Travel as much as possible. That’s why I joined the military (I'm currently living in Korea). It is great for inspiration... and for a life changing experience. I have found many new influences for my artwork here.


1) (OPTIONAL) Name: Ron Francesangelo

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? Yes, Spring 2000.

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
Self-employed. Creative Director for Seraphim Productions, Ltd. We do anything from promo videos/CDs to commercials. This is somehow balanced with creating films and an upcoming young-adult adventure book series. Check us out at www.seraphimltd.com

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
Lots of freelance stuff, all relating in one way or the other to production/post-production.

6) What did you have to do to get this job?
Make a lot of connections with people who are doing similar things in this area and all over the U.S. (network, network, network!), and get funding to get started with equipment, lawyer and accountant fees, etc.

7) What is your day to day like?
9am - 9pm work days (yuck), which consist of doing work for clients for half the day (and drumming up business), and working on "in-house" projects the other half.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
Lots. 60 plus, I'd say. (usually includes Saturdays, which would add more time)

9) How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
I try to schedule at least a few hours a day to relax, and don't work Sundays. To relax I hang out with friends, play video games, watch movies, or write/draw.

10) Do you still make your art?
Yes, but it is becoming more and more difficult to find the time...which is why I am striving to make my work and my art become one without losing the love I have for my art by turning it into work.

11) Are you happy? Yes, but not satisfied.

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
I might have gotten a steady job right out of college (to save a lot of peace-of-mind), which would have gave me a grasp on the working world a little sooner, but I am glad I am trying this now.

13) Words of advice?
Do what you love, and success will follow (if you work hard). Also, don' bite off more than you can chew. To know your limitations helps you to understand yourself and accomplish them in small amounts, instead of burning yourself out over something that is not worth tackling all at once, which usually ends up as something that could have been great but instead just wore you thin.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Don't give up on what you want in life. The tough part is figuring out what that is. Once you have that, go for it until you get it. Oh, and don't worry so much. :)


Updated Fall 2003
1) Name:
Eric Foos

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? Yes. Spring of 1999

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B No.

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
3D Art Lead, Friendly Software Corp. in Maumee, OH

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
Illustrator, Wizard Graphics Inc (B.G.), Art Director at the Center for Teaching, Learning and Technology (BGSU)

6) What did you have to do to get this job? What was your job search like?
Sent a demo, convinced my boss(s) that they needed to move into the world of 3D.

7) What is a typical work day like?
Making sure myself and my team are on the same page. Then it is a creation free for all.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
Average 45. Crunch 55-60.

How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
10-20. First, with my 2 kids, every night after work. Once they are sleepingŠ. Movies, video games, or ³quality time² with the wife. Golf on the weekends, camping, anything to get outside. During work: Nerf Wars, game demos, golf.

10) Do you still make your art?
Occasionally. What is great about being in charge of the 3D department is I have the very real freedom to make it my own.  I still love to sketch, when I find the energy.


Updated Fall 2003
1) Name:
Erik Riccardi

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? Yes. 1998

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B No.

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
My title is Web Designer for AmericanGreetings.com

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
When I graduated I worked in retail and became a manager for a Disney Store. While doing this I freelanced and started my own business (Riccardi Design). Then I got my big break and became a web designer for a e-commerce company. Then I moved on to become a Senior Web Designer for a job placement firm. Then unfortunately I was layoff in ' 02 and then continued to freelance. Once again luck stuck and I'm now at AmericanGreetings and continuing to run my own business.

6) What did you have to do to get this job? What was your job search like?
Once I was layoff off I was in a pool of other designers looking for the same thing. The job search was hard. I had many interviews but got nowhere with them. I decide to come up with a strategy that would put me ahead of other candidates. I found this job advertised in the local paper and decided to go for it, and now I'm here. The job market right now for designers is not the best. A person who bought FrontPage or Dreamweaver and build their first web page now calls him/herself a web designer. You need to stay ahead of the game. Learn new ideas and concepts. Build web sites for fake companies to show employers your skills and to put in your portfolio. Network, network and network. I found out the hard way it's not what you know, it's who you know.

7) What is a typical work day like?
A day for me is working on projects that were assigned to me. At AG I'm in charge of http://www.beatgreets.com/ and http://www.msn.americangreetings.com/.  Maintaining, doing graphics and programming for them. Going into meetings and learn about new ideas coming down the road. Then after work, I come home and work on my own projects for my own clients.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
65-75 hours a week.

How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
Not as much I would like to. I play golf every Thursday w/ people here in the office and then I work on my own art or designs.

10) Do you still make your art?
Some, but not as much as I would like to. The web sites and print work I do for clients is art as well.

11) Are you happy?
Yes.

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
Well I wish I can go back through the computer art program. Take the knowledge I know now and apply it to learning and maybe go into a different direction.

13) Words of advice?
Learn all you can. Take advantage of the resource you have at BG. Start building contacts in your field. Stay ahead of the next guy. Network, network and network.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Keep your head high. Your job search might come up empty at first, but keep at it and the reward will be great. Never give up!!!

22) List your accomplishments:
My own business: Riccardi Design http://www.erikriccardi.com/.
Was in the 2001 Aquent Holiday Calendar. Was among 25 artist from around the world to be published.
Silver Award for Digital Vector-based Illustration - 2002 Cleveland Desktop Publishers User Group Digital Artz Competition.


1) (OPTIONAL) Name: Sunil Ketty

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? Yes, December 1997

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B No

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
I am a 2D/3D Artist For A video game developer, Dreamforge Intertainment INC. & ANC Sports, where I work for the Pittsburgh Steelers at the new Heinz Field. I help control Rotational signs and the LED screen that displays short animation of the Different sponsors.

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
Dreamforge was my first job out of college and I just got the Steelers job.

6) What did you have to do to get this job?
A nice Video Portfolio, Demo Reel and a Fine arts video (images of other art work)

7) What is your day to day like?
Fun and very laid back!! All depends on the current title I'm on, but usually involves modeling, texturing and lighting.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
40 hours + Time at the stadium, unless there is a big milestone to meet and that can mean some long hours.

9) How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
As much as I can...Deck hockey, Ice hockey, Freelance work!

10) Do you still make your art?
Yes, I try to Oil paint and draw as much as possible; I do a lot of Freelance work and try to sell as much as possible.

11) Are you happy? Yes

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
The location of my company-its in the middle of no where, so I live right outside of Pittsburgh and drive and hour to work!

13) Words of advice?
Show your best work and no need to over do a reel. Find your focus, what you enjoy the best and build on that and always have fun, we get to do art for a living!

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
You will enjoy working in this field, the people are cool, work is very laid back and where I work I don’t have to worry about what I wear!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Updated Fall 2003
1) Name:
Christine Gilmore

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? Yes. 1997

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B No.

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
I've started my own business Gilmore Design Group Inc. you can find it at www.gilmoredesigngroup.com.

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
I've worked for consulting firms in Ann Arbor Michigan before moving to Chicago. Since moving to Chicago I've worked for two large agencies in the city doing web site design and have been freelancing from 1999 until 2001 when I started my own business.
To see my resume visit: http://www.christinegilmore.com/resume.html

6) What did you have to do to get this job? What was your job search like?
I was laid off from Agency.com in 2000 and the freelance market was slowing down in 2001. That is what prompted me to start my own business.

7) What is a typical work day like?
I typically make a trip to the post office to mail out an estimate to a potential client. Then I head back to my home office where I work on a multitude of projects, from managing freelancers for logo or print design projects, to designing and developing web sites and interfacing with programmers for more complex web projects. Unfortunately I spend most of my day on the phone with clients talking about future project or revision changes and feedback so most of the actual work I am able to get done happens between 6pm and 11pm in the evening.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
Average of 60 hours a week

How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
Unfortunately I don't have a lot of time to play but when I do I'm either watching a movie, which I love to do, or playing a video game, I'm currently playing Rise of Nations, or playing ball with my dog. My favorite past time is just enjoying a weekend with my husband.

10) Do you still make your art?
I consider each of my client websites my art.

11) Are you happy?
Absolutely! The only thing that would make this better is more money, but that can be said for any job ;)

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
I would have a larger budget to have the ability to grow my business a little easier. But everything in my life has lead up to this place and I couldn't be happier. I've always had a dream to own and run a successful business.

13) Words of advice?
For getting your first job. Focus on your portfolio. If you want to get into the web world, create your own projects. Re-design websites that you've seen online that need help for free or at a discounted rate. School design work is great in a portfolio, but most businesses want to see real, working design. Don't be afraid to take pro-bono work to establish your portfolio. It may be the difference between finding work in 1 month or 1 year.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Good Luck! The design world has changes a lot in the past three years. We used to command whatever salary we wanted but now things are different, the salaries are less and the jobs entail many more responsibilities. The days of a web designer only doing design and no HTML coding are long gone, so learn, learn, learn. The more you know the more valuable you become. Don't be afraid to dabble in the programming world, even if you don't ever want to program anything in your entire life, being able to understand the programming and having the ability to effectively communicate with programming is extremely valuable.

22) List your accomplishments:
Designed, developed and worked as a team on over 80 websites since 1998. Some of my current favorites: http://www.gilmoredesigngroup.com/
http://www.espritproductions.com/
http://www.jasongilmore.com/
http://www.readysetsellonline.com/
http://www.yourenumber1.com/
http://www.fdccc.org/
http://www.brandshee.com/


1) (OPTIONAL) Name: Bradley Rebh

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? Yes, Dec. 1997

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B No.

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
I am a designer and artist at a console game company near Seattle, WA called Adrenium Games.

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
I was an artist at Cavedog Entertainment (a computer game company near Seattle)

6) What did you have to do to get this job?
I went to conventions a lot and sent out a ton of reels. Of course you need a killer portfolio to even get looked at. I think the key is to bypass the HR people and talk to the people that matter.

7) What is your day to day like?
My day to day depends entirely on the schedule. Sometimes I spend the day creating special effects, sometimes I spend the day optimizing an area for frame rate, sometimes I'm inventing puzzles, sometimes I'm hooking up an event system. Most days I do a little bit of everything. My schedule and task list is very very varied.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
I probably average 60-70 hours a week over the course of the development cycle.

9) How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
15-25 hours of play time. Hockey, Tennis, Video Games, Board Games, Movies, that sort of stuff...

10) Do you still make your art?
Yes. My art is interactive entertainment. It's more difficult to have complete control of your vision when you're part of a team, but (in general) the end result is better because of the team's experiences and opinions.

11) Are you happy? Yes.

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
Office politics get in the way too often in the creative process.

13) Words of advice?
Find out what you're good at (and enjoy doing) and market yourself that way. Really work your demo reel around that aspect. It seems to be easier for an employer to look at a portfolio and see a fit for the person if they sell themselves as a texture artist (for instance) rather than someone that touches on a wide range of skills.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Oh and keep your reel short and with your best stuff (2-3 minutes max). Getting a job is mostly who you know. It's difficult to get a company to take a chance on a student fresh out of school. Don't let it discourage you, don't give up. If you have the patience and the skills, it'll happen.


Updated Fall 2003
1) Name:
Jason Gilmore

2) Did you graduate? If so, when? Yes. December 1995

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B No.

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
I am a game designer for WMS Gaming, Inc. in Chicago, IL.

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
I was a 3D artist/animator for Image Space Inc. in Ann Arbor, MI for 3 years.

6) What did you have to do to get this job? What was your job search like?
I had to have a great demo reel, and also show off my 2-dimensional skills as well. The job search was actually non-existent. I had a head hunter call me while I was working for Image Space, which lead me to interview at WMS, and consequently, get the job here.

7) What is a typical work day like?
A typical work day for me is from 10am to 6 or 7pm. I spend the day doing a lot of creative thinking, coming up with new game ideas, patents, and visual designs for our games. I also manage a team of 3 software engineers, 6 artists, a mathematician, and a sound engineer.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
Usually between 40 and 50 hours. In the fall (like right now), I average about 70 hours a week due to our upcoming Gaming Show. That only lasts for about two months, though.

How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
 I usually play about 10 hours a week, and I play very well. But seriously, I spend a couple hours a week playing video games, and the rest of the time in my recording studio (for music).

10) Do you still make your art?
I still make art, but it's of the musical variety now (I'm a musician).

11) Are you happy?
Yes, I'm extremely happy and feel very fortunate about where I am in the world. I take none of my success for granted.

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
I don't know as that I'd change anything. I maybe would've taken more music classes in college.

13) Words of advice?
Certainly. Firstly, in this day and age, follow your dreams. Secondly, to be successful any industry you have to know someone to make it. Priority number one is to make networking connections. I can't stress that enough. I was fortunate in being at right places at right times, but if I could do it all over again, I'd certainly get to know more people in my field. Fortunately, I'm doing that now!

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
Don't overlook the casino gaming industry! We need artists and programmers! Plus, the casino gaming industry is starting to go the way of video games. So, if you like that field.....

22) List your accomplishments:
Shipped Video game titles: Zone Raiders (1997), SportsCar GT (1999); Shipped over 3 dozen casino game titles (1999 - present) including: Reel 'em In: Cast for Cash, Yukon Gold, and Monopoly, just to name the more popular ones....
For more info on me, go to http://www.jasongilmore.com


Updated Fall 2003
1) (OPTIONAL) Name: GARY M. DAVIS

2) Did you graduate? If so, when?
BGSU 1992 FIRST YEAR OF BGSU CGI ALUM! LONG LIVE RON COLEMAN!!!

3) Are you now in graduate school? If so, go to Part B
NOPE

4) What is your job now and whom do you work for?
i own my own business (visualZ). i do consulting, production and training

5) What other jobs did you work before you got this one.
5 YEARS AS CREATIVE DIRECTOR OF A CGI COMPANY THAT DOES SIMULATOR RIDE FILMS. ETC.

6) What did you have to do to get this job? What was your job search like?
most of my jobs have all been word of mouth off reputation. i have never job hunted.

7) What is a typical work day like?
i work all the time and love it. im either working out of my home or traveling on a gig.

8) How many hours do you work a week?
about 75

9) How many hours do you play a week and how do you play?
as much as possible

10) Do you still make your art?
not as much for sun as i would like to.

11) Are you happy? I AM HAPPIER THAN I HAVE EVER BEEN.

12) If you could, what would you change, if anything?
work less, make more

13) Words of advice?
do not, under any circumstances, fall into the frame of mind that using one particular platform or software applications makes someone good or bad. there are people with multi-million dollar facilities that suck and people with scraps winning academy awards. to say "apple rules" or "PCs kick ass" is childish and employers and colleagues will see thru that hooey in a new york minute. its about the person driving, not the tools.

14) Anything else you want to tell your future colleagues?
learn the fundamentals of art, not applications. BEING A CGI ANIMATOR IS MORE LIKE A LIFESTYLE THAN A JOB. BE PREPARED FOR A MINDSET THAT IS DIFFERENT THAN MOST FOLKS WHO DO A 9 TO 5. ITS FUN AS HELL THOUGH.

22) List your accomplishments (to be published):
certified discreet  training specialist for 3ds max and combustion
certified training for kaydara motionbuilder
regular instructor at the oregon3D training center
demo artist and author for discreet
vfx artist