I am currently in my third year at Escape Studios studying Visual Effects and I have the Paul Franklin Scholarship. In my first year I was able to use this as an advantage to network with recruitment at Double Negative and ask them whether they have any summer internships and they were able to offer me a Runner role for that summer.
My main duties as a runner were to complete multiple maintenance or hospitality tasks. Some tasks were in groups or done independently, and some could take a few hours or I could complete 3-5 things within an hour. Tasks included preparing refreshments for meetings, keeping the building tidy, restocking the kitchens and removing unwanted furniture from studios.
Usually, runners are hired after they graduate and have a basic idea of what area they would like to specialise in, but as I had only just finished my first year at Escape Studios I was still unsure which area of Visual Effects I wanted to go into, whether it was 3D, 2D or FX. In my spare time, I was able to use their training room and I spent a few weeks at a time working on a variation of projects between the different departments such as roto prep on Wonder Woman using Nuke or Tracking on Ant Man using 3D Equalizer. I was also able to get advice back from in-house trainers and mentors.
This opportunity allowed me the chance to network with many artists, supervisors and others who worked in the building. It also helped me have a greater understanding of what I wanted to specialise in before starting my second year, which put me a few steps ahead of my peers. Therefore, I was able to start working on projects in class that would help to develop the most necessary skills for when I graduate. Also as I was able to be surrounded by 3D artists, I got an idea of what a strong portfolio would be and what software and soft skills were important in the creative industry, Double Negative in particular.