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ToonBox Entertainment

Toronto, Ontario - Canada
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Position: Senior / Lead Animator

Reports to : Animation Director / Animation Supervisor

Position Description and Responsibilities:
The Senior / Lead Animator is responsible for overseeing animation efforts related to the casting and blocking of shots, animation reviews/dailies and the delivery of approved and/or revised shots on time to meet weekly quota expectations for a given team(s) of animators, with varying levels of experience.
The Senior / Lead Animator is also expected to partner and collaborate with the Animation Director, CG Supervisor, and other department leads to ensure that assets, staging, camera work and character intent is fully understood prior to the onset of animation to ensure successful execution of animation by his/her team.
The Senior / Lead Animator is responsible for partnering with the Animation Director in animation launches (which may include translating the storyboards and/or director’s launch of a sequence/shot from layout into animation) and reviews of character performances while overseeing his/her animation team to ensure that the motivation and acting adheres to the filmic language and goals established for the project as well as maintains a consistent style and coherent level of continuity – both visually and technically – throughout the duration of the production. He or she produces work (character animation) in a fast paced, CG environment using Maya and a suite of proprietary software for THE NUT JOB feature film, amongst other productions/titles as required by the studio.
All Directors, Supervisors, Leads and Artists, pending skill set, may be required to assist other asset/shot departments such as modeling, character finaling, fur finaling, lighting/composite with hands-on shot work.
Responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • To collaborate with the Director/Director of Photography/Animation Director/Lead Artists to explore and develop the visual storytelling, primarily that of acting, of THE NUT JOB 3D feature film slated for theatrical release, amongst other titles.
  • To listen to the director’s verbal description/launch of sequences and shots and realise character action /pacing/mood/cinematography in visual form.
  • To lead and proactively provide support to the animation team (inclusive of other animation leads) which includes troubleshooting and/or obtaining appropriate resolution to any aesthetic or technical issues as they arise to keep production moving forward.
  • To create new and interesting ideas to capture both the activity and the emotional intent of the scene.
  • To maintain a style and deliver quota that is keeping with the look of the show / budget
  • To present and lead the visual direction of animated sequences via contributing to sequence production while concurrently overseeing a team of animators.
  • To assist with recruitment of animation talent as deemed necessary.
  • To organize and manage timelines to ensure all sequences/shots are cast, completed and submitted on schedule.
  • To revise, edit and modify animation/shots as indicated by the director or creative team.
  • To implement various computer programs to enhance the visual presentation of ideas for the scene or for effectively capturing the director's ideas for shots/sequences.
  • To assist with visual exploration, research, and/or creation of design (character/environments/props) as may be required to further foster the creative collaboration at the studio;
  • To maintain awareness of the broader show needs as they relate to aspects of art and design and related revisions which include, but are not limited, to stereoscopy.
  • To work in adherence to budget and schedule constraints while maintaining continuity within the story, cinematography, aesthetics, acting/mood.
  • To assist in training and mentoring of Entry Level artists as required.
  • To familiarise and test production pipeline tools, work-flow and processes in support of studio projects and pipeline growth.
  • To ensure quality control via verifying that all shots follow studio policies and guidelines prior to moving into next stage of production.
  • To maintain a diplomatic, positive attitude that fosters professional collaboration within the animation department as well as across the various disciplines.
  • To work and collaborate with Technical Directors, Production Supervisors, CG/VFX Supervisors, and Production Engineering to maintain and further the production pipeline.

Required Skills and Experience:

  • Bachelors degree in Animation, Film, Art, relevant field or equivalent experience desired;
  • 3 - 5 years of experience at features level animation
  • Good knowledge of Shotgun
  • A strong working knowledge of 2D and 3D animation principles for both cameras and CG characters;
  • A strong working knowledge of the principles of cinematic staging, blocking and camera work;
  • A good working knowledge of Maya and Unix/Linux;
  • Good working knowledge of stereoscopic production methodologies;
  • Must be able to work in a collaborative environment and take direction easily and be willing to participate; as a member of a team as well as to work independently as required;
  • Proven leadership skills within an Animation Department on animated feature productions.

Benefits: Medical Benefits, Dental Benefits, Life Insurance Benefits, Group Insurance Benefits, Vision Care Benefits, Other Benefits

Annual Salary: $55,000 to $95,000 for 40.0 hours per week - Based on experience

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