Visual Effects Industry Connect 19th March 2018
In partnership with UK-based inclusion initiative We Are Stripes, we ran our first ‘Industry Connect’ event on the evening of Thursday 19th March 2018 at The Mill. The event consisted of speed networking by ‘industry discipline’ subscribing to the ‘see it, be it’ mentality where we ensured that each networking table represented talent from BAME (black and minority ethnic) backgrounds.
We had a huge industry presence across Production, 2D, 3D, Research & Development (R&D), Emerging Technology, Animation, design and a range of other roles that included Recruitment, Engineering and Finance. Studios that participated were The Mill, Framestore, Union VFX, The Third Floor, and ILM. We then followed the speed networking conversations with networking drinks so attendees could build on their conversations.
This event was our first collaboration with We are Stripes and led to a continued partnership and series of ‘Industry Connect’ initiatives culminating with Stripes Co-Founder Nene Parsotam joining the ACCESS: VFX non-executive board in December 2018.
In addition to ensuring an inclusive environment, we removed the stigma of similar events by creating face-to-face encounters with industry from the beginning! So essentially there were no awkward panel discussion ‘audience questions’ or the usual confidence issues that come with typical networking events.
One of our attendees was an 11-year old aspiring animator, and this quote from his mother sums up the success and intention of the Industry Connect event:
“We came to your event this evening - what can I say… You have truly inspired an 11 year old child to realise his potential, see the limitless opportunities that are in front of him. Everyone we came in contact with were so warm and friendly and listened to my son, who was shy at first but by the end of our visit was commanding an audience whilst discussing his passion with a table of animators… Thank you and we look forward to supporting and attending your future events”