Karolina Ficek // Alumni Q&A

2017 graduate
karolinaficek.com

What have you been up to since graduating from the program?
After graduating I did a lot of sleeping. Then after that I did a bit of soul searching. It wasn't until maybe halfway through my 4th year that I had started to get interested in the world of motion design. It was only outside of school that I started to build my motion skills thanks to a mentorship, some supportive friends, and a whole lot of youtube tutorials. I had a pretty fraught first year filled with a lot of doubts and uncertainty about what I wanted to do, but after hard work and some luck I got my first full time gig at Sandbox Inc. in the fall of 2018 and have been working there since.

What does a typical work day look like for you?
I work from 9:30AM to 6PM and everything in between changes depending on the type of project I'm working on that given day. I'm on a 2 person animation team and that means I get to wear a lot of different hats, with my tasks being any of the many stages of animating, like storyboarding, designing styleframes and assets, and compositing. The design styles of the projects I get to work on also vary, with some animations being collage-based, focused on characters, or more "motion graphics-y," which has been a great fit for me because I like to get my hands on something new pretty often.

What stands out in your mind as a highlight of your time here at Sheridan? 
This isn't one specific moment that stands out as a highlight, but as a whole, for me the most valuable part of my time at Sheridan was being able to be surrounded by so many creatives and having that community. I got to learn a lot from my peers and built some friendships that helped me grow both as an artist and as a person. Also it helps when some of those connections have helped me professionally and expanded my network, but I feel lucky that I got to meet the people that I did and be a part of that even if it was for just a bit.

What advice would you give to someone who is looking to pursue an education and career in illustration?
I've found that having several areas of interest can be a great asset and in the beginning, it's a great chance to try out different things and see what works for you. There are so many potential career paths for an illustrator and there a lot of creatives that don't work exclusively in one area of illustration. Going into the program I thought that when I graduating I'd be strictly working with book illustration, but now I'm enjoying motion design, which at the time, I didn't even know was a career option. The industry shifts around over time as well and adaptability is an asset.

Promotional animation done for Vision du Monde with Sandbox - La boîte à films inc.
Client: Vision du Monde
Studio: Sandbox - La boîte à films inc.
Creative Producer: Boaz Beeri
Illustration/Animation: Karolina Ficek
Scriptwriting: Camille Tourny

Looping snippet for the music video for "You're Rare" by Corals

Looping snippet for the music video for "You're Rare" by Corals

Thumbnail for personal profile in the Punanimation directory

Thumbnail for personal profile in the Punanimation directory

Banner illustration for Health in All Policies

Banner illustration for Health in All Policies

Submission to collaborative zine, Sore Loser, by Ua Di Gallo

Submission to collaborative zine, Sore Loser, by Ua Di Gallo

Accordion print design

Accordion print design