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Taeyoung Kim – Instructor Feature

April 8, 2021

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Taeyoung Kim is a senior lighting artist at Sony Imageworks and a part-time instructor at the CEA. Born and raised in South Korea he grew up drawing and painting, but it was The Matrix that inspired him to pursue a career in visual effects.

“I feel extremely fortunate to be in the industry, especially here in Vancouver, and I want my students to join this exciting world with me. Vancouver is a main hub for the CG industry, so many studios, so much work (of course covid hit us hard but still…). CEA is attracting pro artists to teach, actively talking to studios to get students real world experience in the studio environment while they study at the CEA. That is amazing.”

“I love sharing my knowledge, the experience I have gained in the industry, encouraging students to trust themselves, that it’s more than okay to make mistakes and ask “silly” questions. Most of all I love their “being here at CEA,” their courage to study for their dream. I have an enormous respect towards that. And I know they can do it if they keep at it, because I was one of them many years ago.”

Students at the CEA benefit from the fact that many of their teachers are the frontline artists helping to develop techniques that will lead the industry in new directions. Taeyoung had this to say about the software being taught and how the CEA balances that within fundamental curriculum.

“I am glad the CEA chose to teach Katana because there are more and more studios that are using it as their main lighting and look-dev application in their pipeline. Teaching the students innovative software gives them an advantage, but only knowing Katana will not land them a job. They still need fundamental understanding of lighting. I try to build their confidence and knowledge by giving them practical assignments and the guidance they need.”

“I have met a lot of teachers, some good ones, some bad ones. Noticing the difference, what separates them, wanting to be one of the better ones, having experienced the uncertainty of studying abroad is what drives me to teach here at CEA.”