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Todd TerryAfter Effects Training
by on Mar 17, 2009 at 6:38:08 pm

Not really a 100% business question... but it affects my business (and you are all the go-to guys) so thought I'd post this here, hope no one minds.

We are thinking of sending our senior editor to After Effects school somewhere... just not sure when or where. He is a top-notch editor, and is decent at compositing (After Effects, Combustion, etc.), but we think he could click that up a few notches.

We have sent another employee for editing training with Sterling Ledet in Atlanta before... I guess that went ok, and know that they do have After Effects training. Was just curious if there were any better/different options than anyone has used or could recommend.

Thanks to all the Cows for your wisdom...



T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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Brendan CootsRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 17, 2009 at 10:20:57 pm

Total Training has some very excellent After Effects materials, better than any class I've ever taken. May not fulfill your need since it's not total immersion (unless you lock him in a room with the discs), but it's probably far cheaper and can be used to train all of your employees current and future.

Brendan Coots

Splitvision Digital

http://www.splitvisiondigital.com


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grinner hesterRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 17, 2009 at 11:43:40 pm

Initiative has always gone too for with me to furnish people with their skill set.
I'd put a bug in his ear and see if he wants to take that initiative but if you buy this for him, he'll apply it to the next job much more than at your place, sooner or later.
To me, if a fine editor has not taken the time to learn AE, he's just an editor that wishes he was a fine one.



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Todd TerryRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 18, 2009 at 12:55:21 am

It's not an initiative thing, it's a time and resources thing.

This editor is as fine a cutter as anyone would want, it's just that he needs to take a jump forward within AE beyond his already reasonable AE skills. I'm not concerned about him taking new-found skills elsewhere, he's been with us for years ("Best job I could ever want") and is well compensated above the market rate.

We could buy him DVDs all day, but I know how we work and how the world here operates... 30 minutes into the first one he would get yanked away to do some "emergency" job here... then again and again. It's just the nature of the fast-turnaround biz we have and the way things here have to work. I could say we'll lock him in the suite for a week, but in practicality we'll just never make that happen.

If we send him away to school, at least that will force the issue and we'll have to deal with his real absence for a few days rather than his "faux absence" knowing he's really just upstairs locked in his suite.

Plus, I know he would jump at the chance to be sent somewhere for AE training (and has told me so), and would be a nice perk for him and a pat on the back for a job well done.

Wasn't really soliciting any observations about my editor's initiative, but rather about the quality of any off-site training that might be available.... if anyone has any insight...

Tx,

T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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grinner hesterRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 18, 2009 at 3:47:54 pm

I wasn't bashin' on him so much as pointing out there are oodles of online tutorials out there.
My thinking is you stand to lose money by training someone who has not taken the initiative to teach themselves a craft. I'd hate to see you write a check, kick him up a notch then he move on to a different place because he's now marketable.
If he's under a non compete, I could see investing but if he's not, you really stand to lose a good editor in the long run.
You'll find oif you hire a young gun AE wiz at half his salary, that'll light a fire under him quick to stay top dog. Self motivation is a good thing.



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Mick HaenslerRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 20, 2009 at 1:39:22 pm

[grinner hester] "I wasn't bashin' on him so much as pointing out there are oodles of online tutorials out there.
My thinking is you stand to lose money by training someone who has not taken the initiative to teach themselves a craft. I'd hate to see you write a check, kick him up a notch then he move on to a different place because he's now marketable.
If he's under a non compete, I could see investing but if he's not, you really stand to lose a good editor in the long run.
You'll find oif you hire a young gun AE wiz at half his salary, that'll light a fire under him quick to stay top dog. Self motivation is a good thing."


As someone who has been using ONLY online tutorials to learn Motion I can say in all honesty, I have become an OK compositor. I'm sharp, motivated, creative, and have some spare time to devote to this but have found tutorials can only take me so far. I also know Todd runs a busy shop and probably works the guy 50 hours a week as it is. So add another 10 hours a week for AE training and now you have a guy pulling burnout hours which is counter productive to the business, the employee and his family. AE is a career in and of itself, learning from online tutorials is like taking a correspondence course for brain surgery.



Mick Haensler
Higher Ground Media


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Todd TerryRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 20, 2009 at 2:56:20 pm

Yes, exactly, Mick... you hit the nail on the head.

This guy is already crunching video for us at least 40+ hours a week. His only breaks from that are when we pull him off of that to serve as a crew member on loction shoots.

Plus he has only a basic computer at home... and a wife, family, dogs, house, etc., to worry about in his off hours. I'm all for initiative (and this guy has plenty), but personally I prefer an employee who would rather worry about having a life when outside of the office than one who spends all off his off-the-clock time doing bascially the same thing as he does when on it. Those, imho, stay much fresher and less subject to burn out. There are a lot of production professionals (not not talking about the amateurs or hobbyists) who list "video production" under "hobbys" in their profiles on industry forums. Those that have an outside life (or at least the ones that I have dealt with) seem to be much more well-rounded individuals.

That was my main point in seeking AE school somewhere...


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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grinner hesterRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 27, 2009 at 6:11:14 am

Well maybe pay him while he hits the class of his choice but I'd still have to see initiative before investing in someone elses education. I'd venture to say a young AE artist would not require an official editing school. Ot better yet, scoop one up at half the rate of that editor and let em teach each other some tricks of the trade.
In my experience, handing folks a new career path has always just given em one.




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Todd TerryRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 27, 2009 at 12:26:05 pm

[grinner hester] "Well maybe pay him while he hits the class of his choice"

No, not his choice... mine. My dime, my call. Just didn't know where.

[grinner hester] "I'd still have to see initiative before investing in someone elses education."

I have, and I am willing. Obviously operate in very different ways, but hey, it's all good.

I appreciate the unsolicited advice... but again, I wasn't asking whether to send him to school, but rather where. If anyone has any more suggestions to that end, they are well appreciated.

Thanks,


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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grinner hesterRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 27, 2009 at 1:55:02 pm

Didnt mean to step on toes. I actually saw a solicitation for advice.
My advice is when an artist takes the initiative, respond to it, otherwise don't fund their career's education.




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Gary HazenRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 18, 2009 at 5:03:51 am

Have a look at Future Media Concepts. If you're going to NAB next month you can catch them at the Post Production World conference to find out if they have a training session that fits the needs of your editor. Most of their training locations are on the East coast, so your editor would still get to enjoy the perks of a trip and a little time away from the edit suite.

I don't know how FMC stacks up against Sterling Ledet. I haven't taken an AE class with them so I can't speak directly to the quality of their AE training. I have attended some Avid sessions conducted by FMC and I was quite pleased with the quality of the instructors.



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Greg HahnRe: After Effects Training
by on Mar 18, 2009 at 2:43:22 pm

I took the Advanced After Effects class with FMC. It was ok. In my class at least, the instructor pretty much just went through one of the existing AE training books out there (After Effects Apprentice in my case). I found that I didn't get much out of the class -- maybe my expectations were too high. I'll admit, though, that the benefit of the instructor led class is that you get to ask questions and get input (which you can't get from a book).

In my experience, nothing has improved my abilities in AE more than the hundreds of free tutorials available on the web. (videocopilot.net, AEtuts.com, allbetsareoff.com, and here on the Cow).



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Sterling LedetRe: After Effects Training
by on Apr 3, 2009 at 6:24:03 pm

I'm responding to this post because I'm thinking of advertising on Creative Cow. My concern, (discussed with Tim in advertising here on the Cow), is that our market tends to be people who are not as likely to self-study. This is therefore, a real interesting thread for me.

I frequently tell people who get me on the phone personally, that there is nothing magical about coming to a class. You could learn basically the same sort of things on your own using Total Training, Lynda, or the wealth of free resources available on the Cow and elsewhere on the net.

In addition to the things previously mentioned in the thread (being able to ask questions, steer the class to your needs, etc.), though, I think one of the things that makes the classroom thing valuable for some is that it is a way to ensure the job definitely gets done quickly.

I have a ton of videos and books for use by both myself and instructors, but they just don't end up getting used. Like a previous poster mentioned, interruptions are a big part of it.

There's a big benefit to getting away from your regular work environment and being focused as part of a small group. Also, the better trainers not only know their chops, they make it fun. And when people are having fun, they learn more and retain more.

I think Total Training and Lynda both have very entertaining videos. There's are some of the very best (the only thing I find in the ball park is the You Suck at Photoshop stuff, which always makes me laugh). But for me, I just don't have the attention span to stay engaged with a DVD or online subscription product for hours at a time like I can at a hands-on workshop.

I know our classes are not for everyone, and my suspicion is that they are not a great fit for a lot of the million plus people who learn products well through self-study on the cow, but there is something to be said for the fact that just because you can change your own oil, mow your own lawn, and paint your own house, doesn't necessarily mean that's your best option.

P.S.

Please don't flame me. I'm not trying to just plug my company. I'm actually trying to judge whether or not it's worthwhile to commit to a years worth of advertising on the Cow. I'd appreciate honest feedback from the community along those lines. Do you think we should advertise on the Cow? If so or even if not, please won't you tell me your reasons why or why not?

Adobe, Apple and Quark certified training in Atlanta, San Diego, Denver, DC and Chicago.

http://www.ledet.com


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