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Career Lounge

One of the most popular events at the East Coast Game Conference returns! We will host the Career Lounge and portfolio critique sessions in its own private room this year during both days of the conference. This is where professionals in the games industry will participate in open floor, informal, and collaborative session discussions on day-to-day operations in their prospective fields. Also, our portfolio critique area offers one-on-one opportunities to obtain feedback and advice from art professionals from game studios in the Triangle. This part of the Career Lounge was so popular we added in more great industry professionals to help evaluate and elevate your portfolio.

If you're interested in meeting with an industry professional for the portfolio critiques, there will be a sign up sheet in front of the career lounge room, please look for the ECGC volunteer if you need help. The Career Lounge and critique session times, along with attendant professionals, are listed below. Check out who is coming to talk, and from which studios, underneath the schedule. We hope you can join us and meet industry artists from studios such as Insomniac Studios, Vicious Cycle and Red Storm Entertainment!

As we are planning for the career lounge in 2015 take a look below at what we had last year in 2014


Roundtable Schedule 2014:

Day 1 - April 23rd

  • 10:00am – 11:00am:
    Anthony Marinello - Director of Production at Katsu Entertainment
    Topic: “It’s not you / It is you” – Sharing experiences from the hiring side of things
  • 2:00pm - 3:00pm:
    Josh Fairhurst - President & co-founder @ Mighty Rabbit Studios
    Topic: Going the Indie route
  • 3:15pm – 4:15pm:
    Shaun Kime – Technical Director, Military Simulations @ Organic Motion
    Topic: Focus on engine programming
  • 4:30pm - 5:30pm: (NOTE: This session is in the Unreal 4 for Everyone / Room 305B)
    Emily Gabrian - Senior Recruiter @ Epic Games
    Topic: Getting into the Games Industry

Day 2 - April 24th

  • 10:00am – 11:00am:
    Stephane Imbert - Director of Technology @ Katsu Entertainment
    Topic: Bringing the beloved 1984 Boulder Dash game to a new generation of players, from concept to finish
  • 11:15am – 12:15pm:
    Chris Devens – Associate Environment Artist @ Insomniac Games
    Topic: Roadblocks to avoid when trying to get into the industry
  • 3:15pm – 4:15pm:
    Ken Turner – Instructor in Simulation and Game Design @ Wake Tech Community College
    Topic: QA practices and the role of QA within the industry

 

Portfolio Critique Schedule

Day 1 - Wednesday April 23rd

  • 11:00am – 12:00pm:
    Suzanne Meiler – Lead/Senior Artist @ Vicious Cycle Software, Inc.
    Steve Henricks – Senior Environment Artist @ Red Storm Entertainment
    Nick Georgopoulos – Senior Environment Artist @ Red Storm Entertainment

  • 2:00pm - 3:00pm:
    Nick Georgopoulos – Senior Environment Artist @ Red Storm Entertainment
    James Trevett – Senior Lead Artist @ Red Storm Entertainment
    Steve Henricks – Senior Environment Artist @ Red Storm Entertainment

  • 3:15pm – 4:15pm:
    Suzanne Meiler – Lead/Senior Artist @ Vicious Cycle Software, Inc.
    James Trevett – Senior Lead Artist @ Red Storm Entertainment

Day 2 - Thursday April 24th

  • 10:00am – 11:00am:
    Eric Terry – Senior Artist @ Epic
    Joseph Drust – Artist / Creative Development Manager @ Pixologic
    Jason Martin – Lead/Senior Artist @ Icarus

  • 11:15am – 12:15pm:
    Eric Terry – Senior Artist @ Epic
    David Schultz – Senior Environment Artist @ Funcom
    Joseph Drust – Artist / Creative Development Manager @ Pixologic

  • 3:15pm – 4:15pm:
    David Schultz – Senior Environment Artist @ Funcom
    Jason Martin – Lead/Senior Artist @ Icarus

 

ECGC – Career Lounge Leads

SuzanneTudman ECGCSuzanne M. Tudman
Lead/Senior Artist
Specialization: Environment Art
Vicious Cycle Software, Inc.

Suzanne has 15 years experience in the game industry focusing in environment art with 16 shipped titles. She has been with Vicious Cycle as their Lead/Senior Artist for 3 years. Recently Suzanne completed Pac Man and the Ghostly Adventures and currently working on an unannounced title. In 2009, Suzanne decided to change up her 10 year career as an artist to focus on recruiting for the game industry. She joined the large recruiting firm Vaco as their Director of Design and Gaming, specializing in job placement and business development. Prior to recruiting, her passion has always lied as an artist. She was the Lead Environment Artist at Atomic Games and worked on the controversial game Six Days in Fallujah. Suzanne also worked for Red Storm Entertainment as a Senior Environment Artist for 7 years. She created environments on AAA titles such as the Ghost Recon series and Rainbow Six.

Suzanne has worked for the East Coast Gaming Conference as their Career Lounge Coordinator since the very first year. She organizes and recruits industry professionals to host roundtable discussions and portfolio reviews. Suzanne has had numerous speaking engagements at local colleges as well as conferences in Raleigh, NC and Atlanta, GA.

 

Ken TurnerKen Turner
Instructor in Simulation and Game Design
Wake Technical Community College 

Currently teaching at Wake Technical Community College in the Simulation and Game Development curriculum, Ken is a consummate game professional. With a career that spans more than 10 years, he has worked on over a dozen AAA titles and has credits on over 40 titles and simulations. Within the realm of QA, Ken has worked with many developers such as Red Storm Entertainment, Ubisoft, Destineer, Atomic, High Voltage, and various branches of the US government. He has held a variety of positions within QA from contract tester up to QA Manager and has worked in a producer capacity on several simulations. Ken is known as a knowledgeable and easy-to-talk-to person who has spoken at conferences and lectures about how to get into the industry. He likes the color red.

 

ECGC – Roundtables:

Chris Devens2Chris Devens
Associate Environment Artist
Insomniac Games

Chris Devens has been in the game industry for a 5+ years but has been a lifelong gamer. Chris has been working for Insomniac for 1 year coming from Epic Games for the last three prior years. The first two years were spent as a QA tester during which time he shipped multiple titles such as Infinity Blade, Bulletstorm, and Gears of War 3, and GOW3: Raam's Shadow DLC. He has spent the last year as a contract environment artist working on Epic's upcoming Fortnite. Prior to joining the game industry, Chris worked as a marketing director and graphic designer for multiple real estate development companies.

 

shaunShaun Kime
Technical Director
Organic Motion

Shaun Kime is a Technical Director at Organic Motion, where he has been working to blend markerless body and facial motion capture, physics, and animation together to create the next generation of military engagement training with roleplayers. Previously, Shaun was a Principal Engineer at a local startup, Activate3D, which was acquired by Organic Motion in 2012. Shaun was also a Technical Director at Emergent Game Technologies on the Gamebryo game engine. During his time at Emergent, Shaun shipped 16 versions of the popular middleware package. Shaun has also participated heavily in the local game development community, serving as Technical Chair for the 2011 East Coast Game Conference.

 

Josh Fairhurst3Josh Fairhurst
President & co-founder
Mighty Rabbit Studios

Josh Fairhurst is the president and co-founder of Mighty Rabbit Studios - a small independent game developer based in Holly Springs, NC. He was the lead designer and programmer on Saturday Morning RPG, and is currently working with his team on a new tactical strategy game called Breach & Clear. Previously Josh worked as a game tester at Epic Games on Gears of War 2. He graduated from North Carolina State University in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science.

 

Stephane ImbertStephane Imbert
Katsu Entertainment
Director of Technology

Stephane is Co-founder of Katsu Entertainment and currently working on the awesome 30th Anniversary edition of Boulder Dash. In a past life, Stephane worked as technical lead on some of EA's best known franchises including MADDEN, TETRIS, NASCAR and MONOPOLY where he had a terrific time designing NASCAR Kart Racing and surviving Superman Returns.

 

Anthony Marinello2Anthony Marinello
Katsu Entertainment
Co-Founder and Director of Production

Anthony Marinello has been a Producer and Software Engineer professionally since 2002. He has developed games on platforms from AAA console to handheld to mobile, with some of the biggest brands in the entertainment industry and tens of millions of players worldwide. His shipped games include EA's NASCAR racing series, Madden NFL Football, Superman Returns, and the top-ten grossing iOS title, MONOPOLY Hotels. Anthony is currently Co-Founder and Director of Production at Katsu Entertainment, developing the 30th Anniversary Edition of the classic Boulder Dash game.

 

Ken TurnerKen Turner
Instructor in Simulation and Game Design
Wake Technical Community College 

Currently teaching at Wake Technical Community College in the Simulation and Game Development curriculum, Ken is a consummate game professional. With a career that spans more than 10 years, he has worked on over a dozen AAA titles and has credits on over 40 titles and simulations. Within the realm of QA, Ken has worked with many developers such as Red Storm Entertainment, Ubisoft, Destineer, Atomic, High Voltage, and various branches of the US government. He has held a variety of positions within QA from contract tester up to QA Manager and has worked in a producer capacity on several simulations. Ken is known as a knowledgeable and easy-to-talk-to person who has spoken at conferences and lectures about how to get into the industry. He likes the color red.

 

 

ECGC – Critique Bios

Joseph DrustJoseph Drust
Artist / Creative Development Manager
Pixologic, Inc.  Makers of ZBrush

Bios: Joseph Drust is an artist residing near the small town of Pittsboro, North Carolina. He graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design with a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Game Design. Joseph has over ten years of experience working in the video game industry as a character artist with a focus on modeling and sculpting. He has created character assets for games including Ghost Recon, Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter, Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow, Ben 10 Alien Force, and Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon.

Presently, Joseph is an Artist/Creative Development Manager with Pixologic, Inc: The Makers of ZBrush. Currently In his free time Joseph teaches online classes for http://www.ryankingslien.com/, kitbashes vinyl toys, and experiments with 3D Rapid Prototyping and scanning technologies.

 

David SchultzDavid Schultz
Artist
Specialization: Senior Environment Art
Funcom

David Schultz graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in French and Philosophy. He is currently an Senior Environment Artist at Funcom with six years of experience in the videogames industry. David first learned digital art in 2004 as an Intern at a small studio in Asheville, NC. He struggled to find work as Freelance Commercial Artist, and had to reevaluate what he wanted to do. David has always loved video games and the thought of creating worlds, so he decided to commit myself to learn the skills to become an Environment Artist in the Video Game Industry. He has now been in this industry for six years, first with Vicious Cycle Software and now as a Senior Environment Artist at Funcom. David has worked on a broad range of titles such as: Eat Lead, Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon, Ben 10 Omniverse, and The Secret World.

 

Steve HenricksSteve Henricks
Senior Environment Artist
Ubisoft – Red Storm Entertainment

Steve Henricks is currently employed at Ubisoft/Red Storm Entertainment as a Senior Environment Artist. Steve was lucky enough to be enrolled in several pre-college art programs in the city of Pittsburgh, eventually getting several scholarships to Carnegie Mellon’s pre-college art program. It was there that Steve was formally introduced to computer graphics. In 2008, after years of civil design and 3D CAD work, he returned to school and earned his Bachelor's degree in Game Art and Design from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. Before completing his degree he began working at Red Storm and has been there for over 6 years.  In the past few years, he has created art for the multi-player and campaign portions of Ghost Recon: Future Soldier, and several of the games DLC packs. Currently, Steve has been spending his time creating visual benchmarks and is working on an unannounced AAA Ubisoft title.

 

Nick GeorgopoulosNick Georgopoulos
Senior Environment Artist
Ubisoft – Red Storm Entertainment 

Nick received a degree in Computer Animation from The Academy Education Center out of Minneapolis, MN. He had a career in graphic design and video production before he made the move into the game industry as a UI art at Atomic Games working on Six Days in Fallujah. Nick is currently working at Red Storm Entertainment as an Environment Artist and recently finished work on Ghost Recon Future Soldier.

 

James TrevettJames Trevett
Senior Lead Artist
Ubisoft – Red Storm Entertainment

James Trevett is currently Lead Level Artist at Ubisoft Red Storm. James got his start in games by building multilayer levels for Bungie's Myth series with a small mod team. This led the way to an art position at a small start up, or two before joining Red Storm as an Level Artist. During his time at Red Storm he has worked as a Level Artist, Technical Director and Lead Level artist on numerous titles. James specializes in creating assets and level composition, always striving to push the limits of technology with art and design.

 

jrm2Jason Martin
3d Artist
MFV.com

Jason Martin, is a 3D Artist and working professionally in the Gaming and Digital Media Industries since 2007. He started my career as an intern at Icarus Studios, based in Cary, NC, currently known as MFV.com. Jason has had the opportunity to work on PC and mobile games including Fallen Earth and Dexter: The Game, earlier in my career, and more recently, TabApp and TabApp Elite.

 

 

 Eric TerryEric Terry
Senior Artist
Epic Games

Eric has been working in the gaming industry for the last 16 years as an artist and modeler. He previously worked as a Senior Texture Artist at Red Storm Entertainment for 12 years and the last 4 years he has been working with Epic Games as a Senior Artist. Eric's Specialty are in Environment Artist (modeling, texturing, shaders). Eric hates long walks on the beach and I likes playing video games and we having 4 kids (all girls) there is not much free time on his hands.