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Senior Narrative Animator
Come join the award-winning God of War development team! Santa Monica Studio is looking for a Senior Narrative Animator to help us push the boundaries of interactive storytelling and set the bar for narrative creativity on the PS4. This individual will contribute to our cinematic vision by animating and breathing life into the performances of our characters and game world.
As a Senior Narrative Animator, you will be working closely with the Narrative Animation Lead, Director of Photography, Animation Director, and Narrative Director to create story moments that are visually stunning, while also working with a wide range of development team members to ensure technical feasibility.
- Work closely with the Narrative Team during the cinematic pre-visualization process, assisting both with live-action and 3D pre-vis. Focus on nailing character development, choreography, and timing of each scene with the Director of Photography.
- Assemble and prepare cinematic scenes for shooting on the motion capture stage.
- Assist with mocap shoots, informing the stage crew of set building and prop needs, checking for continuity and keeping track of editing needs for scenes.
- Assemble, edit, clean up, and enhance motion capture data shot on stage, including both body and face. Collaborate with the Director of Photography to maintain proper staging and visual language.
- Animate non-mocapped characters, creatures, and props by hand. This includes hand-keyed facial expressions and lip sync as necessary.
- Work closely with Narrative Tech Designers to integrate scenes into the game engine, monitoring and troubleshooting any technical issues that might arise.
- Give concise and timely feedback to outsourcing teams.
- Proactively facilitate requests or information needs regarding any aspect of the animation creation process. Work with the Character Tech Art team to improve character rigs, tools and workflow pipeline.
- Actively advance skill set and abilities by keeping aware of industry trends and techniques, evaluating competitive products, and learning new software packages and traditional art methods.
- A strong demo reel that demonstrates expert knowledge of fundamental animation principles and acting skills. Be able to create a full range of lifelike performances from the subtle to the dramatic and powerful.
- Demonstrate proficient command of weight, timing, and posing through manipulating motion capture data as well as key-framing.
- High level of proficiency in Maya and MotionBuilder. Experience working with both body and facial performance capture pipelines recommended.
- Good understanding of scene staging and layout. Experience with photography or cinematography a plus.
- Comfortable learning and working in game engine environments. Some knowledge of crafting interactive storytelling and/or minigames is useful.
- Work well in a creative, team-oriented environment, exhibiting excellent communication, time-management, and organizational skills. Be able to reach across multiple disciplines to gather feedback and address cross-functional issues.
- Strong leadership skills, production sensibilities, and the drive and talent needed to produce and implement the highest quality work. Penchant for practical innovation and the ability to bring new ideas to the table.
- Basic modeling skills and knowledge of scripting in MEL and Python a plus.
- B.A. in fine arts or relevant curriculum, or equivalent skillset
- Minimum 5 years’ industry or related experience
- 1 or more published titles working with motion capture performance data a major plus.
- Passion for video games
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