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Through the eyes of...
an Animation student

We’ve been asking our students about their UCA experience and what they get up to in a typical day, to show you what it’s like to study here. This week we chat to recent graduate Izzy Argent, who gained a first-class degree in Animation!

12 Aug 2022

Hi Izzy! What made you choose UCA and your course?

“I fell in love with animation during my foundation course at Oxford Brookes. We had a masterclass on stop motion and hand drawn animation; I stayed up all night finishing the project and exploring my own animations. It made me realise I wanted to pursue it at as a degree.

“I chose UCA after a visiting tutor at Oxford recommended the University. I attended an open day and Lesley Adams, the course leader, said during her talk that: ‘You can do anything with animation, create everything’, and I really fell in love with that idea. The tutors are passionate, the campus is buzzing with creativity, and the University has great industry links. It’s the best place to be if you want to study animation.”

What was a typical day like on campus for you?

"My typical day on campus in first year was working from 10am till 5pm then going to a society, catching up with friends, or going on dates. When it got closer to deadlines I stayed later sometimes until the studios closed. Visiting the canteen for coffee was a must and I sometimes went home to halls for lunch or short breaks. Having halls right on campus was so convenient.

'During second and third year I worked from home most of the time due to COVID but even then, I had frequent contact with tutors. My course dealt with COVID so well and I always felt close to the University even when I was unable to visit campus.

What was your favourite UCA memory?

“My favourite memory from being at UCA would have to be sitting in the cinema watching everyone's work after a deadline. We were able to experience each other's work and get inspired and amazed by the creativity of our course mates. I really valued everyone’s opinions and loved being lucky enough to see the starting point of their career in those cinemas. 

What piece of work are you most proud of and why?

“Of all the work I produced at UCA I’m the proudest of my graduation film Changing Room. It’s a very personal film with the protagonist based on myself. It also has some of my best animation, which I’m really proud of, especially during a pandemic when it was hard to find motivation.”

A still from Changing Room by Izzy Argent. Five swimmers make a star shape in the pool

A still from Izzy Argent's graduation piece, Changing Room.

What are your post-uni career plans - and have they changed since you started your studies?

“Since leaving UCA I’ve been working in animation while doing some freelance illustration on the side. I’ve been considering doing an MA in Directing Animation, but I want to make sure it’s what I really want so I’m taking a few years to build my skillset and passions before applying anywhere. I started this course without a clear goal in mind so the decision to graduate as an animator with the option to pursue an MA grew naturally for me.”

How do you recommend future students choose the right course and university for them?

“To make sure you’re choosing the right course I would recommend trying elements of everything you’re interested in studying and then find a course that fits what you’re most passionate about.

"In terms of choosing a university, things like employability afterwards are important - UCA has an excellent career support service and has great industry links. But the energy of the campus is also important and making sure tutors’ values line up with yours was crucial for me. I was encouraged to explore everything I could, taboo and otherwise, and being in that open minded space with similar peers made my university experience so positive.”

Finally, what’s the one thing no-one told you about uni before you started?

“That the University experience is different for everyone, and you should focus on exploring who you are and what you care about. Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) was huge in first year for everyone and with social media it was easy to get caught up in what you weren’t doing. But what you actually do is more important.”

To find out more about our Animation degrees, visit our course pages