For me, ZOS feels like another family. I have built real lasting friendships with many of my workmates. There’s a strong sense of community here, and I feel lucky to be a part of it.
I’m currently supporting the Dungeon Team as an Animator. I provide animations for monster abilities, boss abilities, as well as storytelling moments that can range from a special conversation to elaborate intros and deaths. I say “currently” because we often rotate Animators around so nobody is doing one thing forever. Before my current role, I supported the Design Team that focused on the open world quests and content.
I started my time with the ZeniMax family working as a contract QA tester at Bethesda Game Studios where I was part of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim team. After Skyrim launched, I transferred to ZeniMax Online Studios, and here we are today.
When I first get in, I go to my morning meeting, head to the kitchen for a coffee and a snack, chat with some co-workers, try to remember to read my emails (I’m really bad at that), and then work on my animation tasks.
Tasks range from sifting through the animation library to find appropriate animations to best execute a Designer’s vision to creating an animation from the ground up and testing it in game. A few hours later, I have another meeting and take a break for lunch (we usually play games together). From then on, I work on more animation tasks and possibly attend another meeting near the end of the day (maybe even two).
On Fridays, the Animators usually get together to act out and film reference footage. It’s a great time to bounce around ideas, get a fresh perspective on some of your movements or acting choices, and have some fun!
For me, ZOS feels like another family. I have been here for almost six years at this point, and the time really flew by. I know most of the faces, and I have built real lasting friendships with many of my workmates. It’s common for us to hang out after work, including at each other’s places since we all live relatively close. People play tabletop games together after hours sometimes as well. There’s a strong sense of community here, and I feel pretty lucky to be a part of it.
Some artists often feel like their work isn’t good enough or that they could have done better, and that’s totally me. Sometimes, it’s challenging to try to meet my own expectations. I work alongside many talented people, and I push myself to try to keep pace with them. My team is good at telling me what I’m doing right, but more importantly, they’re good at telling me when I’m missing the mark. In the end, we all just want our game to be the best, and we want to walk away knowing we did our best.
My eye as an animator has definitely developed a lot during my time here, and it has a lot to do with being around the Animation Team. I try to improve my animation skills by drawing outside of work and doing little exercises in 2D as well.
Becoming a professional Animator is easily my proudest achievement. It’s been over three years since I made the move and I still can’t believe it sometimes. Becoming a career artist has always been my life’s goal, and the climb wasn’t easy. I’ll never forget the moment when the news came that I got the job. It was truly life changing.
I love RPGs as well as action and action-adventure games. Currently I’m beating the old Castlevania games from my backlog. I enjoy digital painting, looking for good authentic taco places, and I have an “on-again off-again” relationship with the gym. I’m also trying to read more, but that’s not working out too well.
ZENIMAX ONLINE STUDIOS is hiring for The Elder Scrolls® Online, Commander Keen, and future projects. We’re looking for talented, self-motivated people of varied experiences and backgrounds with the desire to make great games. Welcome to ZOS!