Is Motion Design for you?
We love checking in with our network to see what our alumni are up to. It’s always super cool to see how far people have come in their careers and we’re proud that we played a small part in their success. Frederik is one of those people. He’s a 3D designer and animator freelancing from Malmo, Sweden, for international brands like Nike, adidas, Starbucks, and Adobe amongst others. Take a look at his Instagram.
Since graduating from our Karlskrona campus Motion Designer program in 2013, he’s had quite a ride. One of the most memorable experiences was his final project at motion design agency Onesize in Amsterdam—a trailer for a Hardstyle festival called Qlimax. “It wasn’t really my cup of tea, but a super open brief and nothing was too crazy for these guys. We had barely any budget, so we were a small team, I was leading with the art direction and had a lot of responsibility for the project. That was a big thing for me. I wanted to create something good.” Before he knew it, Frederik was also starring in the trailer. “When it was released there was all this buzz around trying to figure out who the ‘DJ’ was under this ‘cape’. But it was me! It was pretty funny.”
When you’re given the chance to own a project and have fun doing it, there’s no better feeling. After freelancing for the past three years between Amsterdam, London and Sweden, Frederik was looking for a new challenge and to develop his skills. “Part of trying to develop and do work I really believe in meant finding clients that I thought would be fun to work with. So, I reached out to a Stockholms Bränneri (gin distillery) brand because I thought it’d be fun to play with their bottles, which I liked the look of.” The brand was small and didn’t have a huge budget. But as he learned, cash flow doesn’t mean the work won’t be great. It’s a trade-off. “I was really surprised to find they were interested in collaborating. Putting their trust in me and giving me the freedom to do whatever I wanted.”
The strategy paid off. The gin company got a great response from the animation and new opportunities opened for Frederik. Companies like Absolut Vodka reached out hoping for a similar collaboration. “From this, I learned to trust my instincts. To try to do the stuff I really love to do. And the result will always come out so much better.”
After these invaluable experiences, Frederik feels pretty confident in his work and what the future holds for him career-wise. “I’ve been reaching out to dream companies, like ManVsMachine, that I would never have thought would have replied to me in the past.” This confidence is something we see a lot of in our Hyper alumni. “My mum asked me what I’d have done if I didn’t go to Hyper recently and I really couldn’t answer her. You never know how your life will turn out. But the question did make me think about how Hyper has taught me to become comfortable outside my comfort zone. Look, work is going to be uncomfortable a lot of the time. And that’s a good thing. It means you’re growing. Now I feel like I can really hold my own when I’m out there hustling for work. And that’s a great place to be in.”
The freelance life isn’t for everyone though. When it works, it can be liberating. But it isn’t without its pitfalls. Being strict with yourself and setting boundaries can be hard for some. At Hyper, we really want our students to be able to start doing this for themselves from the get-go. “Everything was up to me. No one gave me work or did the work for me, you have to do it yourself and put the time in to get the most out of the experience.” And the best thing about Hyper for him? “It’s so free and open. I was able to fail. Failing was good and we learned that nothing bad came out of it in the end. For instance, I’m very introverted and my English wasn’t good back then. Parts of the course were in English and that was really scary to me when I first started. But over the years, I’ve worked all around Europe and with mostly international clients, so it’s been an added bonus.” Have a look at Fredrick’s website to see all the clients.
Our Motion Designer program is held at our beautiful Karlskrona campus. It’s a hub in the middle of the wilderness, much like an artist retreat. Its isolation gives our students a really unique experience and environment to learn. For Frederik, the choice to study at Karlskrona was a good one. “I’m glad I went there instead of Stockholm. It’s a bubble where you learn a lot and it’s intense in a good way. I got a lot more out of it.”
We’re really glad he did too! Thanks so much for sharing your story, Frederik. Any advice for someone looking to give the program a try? “Well… let’s be honest. You won’t come out of school and be a great motion designer immediately. That’s not how it works. You get tools that will help make you into one, one day, but it’s up to you. Hyper will guide you and show you what’s possible. But then you have to make your own way… And remember, have fun making mistakes!”