Mihai Stan

BSc (Hons) Computer Animation and Visual Effects

Mihai Stan

Mihai began his studies as an amateur enthusiast in Computer Animation and Visual Effects. Now a University of Bradford graduate, Mihai is an experienced, dedicated professional in visual effects, with a strong portfolio of work to his name and an exciting career ahead.

I developed my ability to problem solve, find alternative yet effective solutions to unseen difficulties, and time manage effectively while under a strict deadline

The journey begins

"My road into visual effects started at the University of Bradford.

As a first year student, I had a very basic idea of VFX and what is behind the entire subject, but over time the entire field proved to be one of the most compellingly complicated industries to work in.

"After my first year of study I started to realise what roles in industry I would be suited for, so I started focusing most of my attention on those areas, particularly Digital Compositing – the art of combining multiple image sources, computer generated imagery, raw plates, photographic elements and live action stock footage into one seamless piece, which appears to have been filmed with the same camera, with the same lens, under the same lighting conditions."

Freedom to choose

"Out of the three years at the University of Bradford, I strongly believe that the third one was without a doubt the best for my personal development.

"I had the freedom to choose what to work on in my own way during an individual project module. Working independently I was able understand where my strengths lie in terms of Compositing and Visual Effects. I developed my ability to problem solve, find alternative yet effective solutions to unseen difficulties, and time manage effectively while under a strict deadline. 

"Considering a career in the visual effects industry, there is nothing on this earth as capable of turbo-charging your development as an artist. This is everyone's responsibility as an aspiring VFX artist, whether you want to work on games, films, TV series, 3D, 2D or simulations."

Embracing the University experience

"University has played a major factor in my development. Tutor guidance has been invaluable, especially during my final year at the University. Being able to communicate frequently with tutors about my work has allowed me to understand the importance of effective feedback to make adjustments and improvements. University has made me curious, and has helped me understand that asking for help and guidance is always better than sticking your head in the sand.

"With the tutors' support I have been fortunate enough to be selected to be a teaching assistant in my final year, helping second year and postgraduate students grasp compositing - from the basics to the more advanced workflows and procedures, enabling me to test and grow my compositing knowledge. In general terms, you cannot explain something until you fully understand the principles of the subject, so this was a huge opportunity to grow as a Digital Compositor. 

"I am currently a Junior 2D Artist for Double Negative in London.”

Advice to others?

"Never be afraid to ask for help or branch out to other areas of visual effects. Being curious is the most important trait you can have if you plan on working in this industry. Also, keep in mind that the industry is a very challenging place, with a lot of working hours, and you have to be prepared to deal with them in your own personal way.

"A small tip from my experience so far would be to never leave things til the last minute, it won't work.

"Apart from this, constantly work, dedicate yourself to what you're doing, have fun and don't be afraid to experiment, there are no limits in what you can do in this field, the only limit is how much you allow yourself to do, and achieve."

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