Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Nature of our Industry

I am currently employed in a large animation studio with over 100 colleagues. Mid last week a large majority of the studio I work at was stood down without notice, myself included, for a yet to be defined amount of time. It was explained by the owner to us in a brief meeting. I think that it is ok for me to mention this here as it seems like it was a story that was spread quite quickly amongst people in the Australian animation industry (i received messages from 2 friends in other states half an hour after the meeting saying that they heard about it.)

I dont think it appropriate to talk about the specifics of how this came to be or to blame any specific cause, but I would like to talk briefly about a phrase that was uttered during the meeting. "The nature of our industry".

It seems to be accepted that people in our industry can be treated differently than those in others. Perhaps its the perception that we are "lucky" to work in our profession. Perhaps it is a lack of a unified body or union. Im not really sure, but I very much doubt that if you stood down dozens of people without notice in other office that it would considered par for the course.

I dont think that the industry can thrive while the people working in it are mistreated. Seniors will retire early into different fields, juniors will be disillusioned, and with the creative quality compromised as a result the demand from clients will decline. I do not accept that the industry has to be this way, and hope that I never facilitate it doing so.

I am hopeful that I will be able to work with talented people on bay st again soon.

If you are involved in the situation and feel that this post in inappropriate please email at afgrigg@gmail.com

Love Alex.


Gemma said...

I hear about that kind of thing alot. It's not right. I think the new generation of Artists, film makers and animators really need to do something about it.

Just because this is a 'creative industry' doesn't mean that we don't have to adhere to the set of rules and decency that other industries do, just because you should concider yourself lucky to be in it.

hope it all works out Alex

Sophie said...

Practitioners in "less creative" industries like journalism are fed this kind of crap too.

Maybe it stems from the belief that creative work isn't "real work" like accountancy, or making roads or teaching kids how to read.

At any rate it sucks and I too hope I don't encourage that sort of thinking.