Given the current situation, 2020 is a daunting year for new entrants to the animation industry. What happens when you overcome the initial challenge and land a placement? We asked Blue Zoo interns and mentors to give their tips to maximise your time with an animation studio.

Here’s what they said…

Blue Zoo Intern Short Film 2018

‘My advice would be do not be afraid to ask everyone around you how they do things. There are very many things that uni doesn't teach you so there's no shame in asking about workflow or advice, everyone always learns from each other.’ - Oleksiy, 2017 Blue Zoo Intern 

‘- Take full advantage of the resources around you. Not only are your new colleagues great places to learn from, but there are often old tutorials and recordings you can access while at the studio and watch in your spare time.

- Make sure to not only add those around you on LinkedIn but why not leave HR/production with your personal email on your last week so they can keep in contact if they want you back? This also means you can get in touch with them if you want to find out about future vacancies or if you need a copy of any of your work that's been released since you left.

- If you got to work on a production/show while interning is there going to be a wrap party/premiere? Why not ask because if there is you might get invited, and then you can catch up with all those you met while interning even after the internship has ended.’ - Marcus, 2017 Blue Zoo intern

'Don't be afraid to apply yourself in relation to internships. It doesn't matter if you're an energetic person with lots of ideas or quiet person interested in learning more. You are hired to be exactly who you really are because of the unique insights you have to offer. Always try to apply yourself but try to be relaxed whilst doing so. Personally I perform best when I am chilled out so don't over think it and relax! Make lots of mistakes and enjoy learning, it's what you are there to do.' - Joe, 2019 Blue Zoo Intern

Blue Zoo 2019 Interns receiving feedback

‘1. Speak to the people that inspire you in the company or heads of the department that you wish to work for. Never be afraid to approach them and get your name heard.

2. Never sit there and be afraid to ask - it's much better to be on the right path than sat stressing.

3. Surround yourself with good people.

4. However big or small the project or budget put all your love into them.

5. Collaborate and be a team player.’ - Grant, Blue Zoo Art Director

‘I think for me the best thing I've taken and would recommend to interns is to talk to the people around you. If you're stuck on how to do something or have a question just ask someone around you, as for me I learnt so much by doing so. And I'm still learning so much every day through asking people and getting advice both technical and creatively!! And as an artist we will never stop learning from all the talented people around us, whether that is in a studio or virtually!!’ - Ryan, Blue Zoo Modeler and Texture Artist

‘When you start working in the internship a lot of questions come up, and you will find yourself lost, not knowing if you should ask your mentor or not. I think that you have to find a balance between asking and trying to pull it off yourself. When you find something you don't know how to do (especially if it is a technical thing) the first thing to do is try to fix it yourself: search on Google, watch a tutorial... But if you find yourself losing a lot of time to searching, that's then it's actually good to ask. In conclusion, don't overwhelm your mentor asking questions you can easily find answers to on Google, but don't be scared to be annoying for having questions because we all have been new to the industry once and we are here to learn after all!’ - Marcos, 2020 Blue Zoo Intern

Best of luck to all university students, graduates and new entrants to the animation industry. We hope this advice will help you feel empowered in your internship or junior role! If you want to work at Blue Zoo in the future, remember to follow Blue Zoo Careers on Twitter and keep an eye out for new vacancies on the Blue Zoo Careers page