Top 10 world ranking for digital illustration – 3 years in a row

Another placement among the world’s top 10 digital illustration schools cements Flinders University’s global reputation in the booming visual effects industry.

The hotly contested The Rookies competition attracts leading multi-media schools from all over the world. For the third year running, the Flinders University / CDW Studios collaboration has been named a top 10 ‘Best Concept Art and Illustration School’. It was the only Australian institute to make the coveted category.

“We are delighted to be in The Rookies top ten for the third year running,” says Katie Cavanagh, course coordinator for the Flinders University Bachelor of Creative Arts degree in Visual Effects and Entertainment Design.

“Winning School of the Year for digital illustration in both 2017 and 2018 was amazing in this fiercely competitive contest and we continue to score at the very top, with elite digital art and illustration schools from around the world.”

CDW Studios founder Simon Scales says: “Students who are studying the bachelor’s degree are of a truly international standard and the work they have been producing during the degree is absolutely outstanding.”

The VFX industry is burgeoning and local companies are increasingly employing graduates, amid growing opportunities with global majors.

With the sector changing at a rapid pace, Flinders University is constantly evolving to ensure graduates remain in high demand with world-class skills.

“Last year we revamped our Bachelor of Creative Arts (Digital Media) into the Bachelor of Creative Arts (Visual Effects and Entertainment Design) to reflect its specific nature,” Ms Cavanagh says.

She says teachers at Flinders and CDW Studios are at the top of their game. These include Mr Scales who has continued his work for the Lego group and video game companies alongside teaching, while global VFX heavyweights are brought in for the course’s legendary masterclasses – names like Eytan ZanaDarren Quach and Carlo Arellano.

Associate Professor Jason Bevan will join the talented faculty in 2020, relocating from China where he leads visual effects courses at Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University. An expert in motion design, animation, digital film-making and visual effects, he established a glowing industry reputation prior to his academic career. Graduates from his courses have worked on major productions that include Avengers End Game, Inception, Wonder Woman and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

“Like all Flinders degrees, VFX students can incorporate entrepreneurial topics that have been designed by our world-leading entrepreneurial hub, the New Venture Institute,” Ms Cavanagh says. “This can be valuable particularly given creatives often work as freelancers, contracting on games or films.”

Students Jay Blencowe, Jonathan Wenberg and Duncan Li placed in the 2019 Rookies competition to propel Flinders and CDW into the top 10.

Flinders/CDW Studios’ Rookies achievement complements student Penny Parker’s recent placement in Adobe’s inaugural ‘global class of top talent’. Her win highlights the University in the Adobe Design Achievement Awards, a new avenue showcasing excellence in emerging digital creatives.

Find out more about the Flinders University VFX degree.

An image from Penny Parker’s winning Adobe entry
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