School of Computing, Media & the Arts

Student views

Ruthie Nielsen

Ruthie studied computer animation and visual effects and now works for TT Fusion in London

Ruthie Nielsen

BA (Hons) Computer Animation and Visual Effects

When I visited Teesside everyone was so passionate about animation and so warm and friendly that I knew I wanted to go there straight away.

How did you find out about Teesside University?

My mum was helping me look online for universities that had good animation courses and we found Teesside University came up a lot. One of my teachers mentioned a different university so I visited both open days and I’m so glad I did. When I visited Teesside everyone was so passionate about animation and so warm and friendly that I knew I wanted to go there straight away.

Why did pick your chosen course?

Originally I was looking at media related courses. But after looking at a few universities I realised I wanted to study animation, and chose Teesside because it has a reputation as one of the best universities for animation in the UK.

Tell us about your career since graduating?

Before graduation I was doing some freelance post-production work on the film Irene’s Ghost for the University, which I had finished working on in my final year. The University had more freelance work to offer me after graduating but I accepted a job as a film runner at Moving Picture Company (MPC) in London. I worked hard at MPC and continued with personal work in my spare time. I left MPC after two months, when I accepted a job offer for my current position at the game developer company TT Fusion.

Describe your current role, your main duties and achievements?

I’m currently a junior character rigger working at TT Fusion, a division of TT Games. We work on AAA family-friendly games. At TT I am responsible for creating control rigs for a wide variety of characters, creatures, vehicles and props. I am also responsible for writing python and MEL scripts to automate processes and support the animation pipeline.

What are your ambitions for the future?

I hope to continue working on AAA games at TT Fusion. I am extremely excited about upcoming projects and hope to have made important contributions, not only to those projects, but also to the rigging and animation pipeline.

Would you recommend Teesside University and your course?

Definitely! The course taught me the skills I needed to get into the industry and the student facilities are right next to the tutors' offices so they were always around to help. I learnt a lot of practical skills that have been useful, but the most important skill I learnt was the ability to take criticism. It’s something that’s extremely difficult to teach, but I found that regularly getting verbal feedback from the tutors really helped me to not only accept critical feedback, but to apply it as well.