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Mentor of the Day: Frederic Durand

Frederic_mercedes-commercial_passthrough2We’re pleased to welcome back Frederic Durand, a CG Lead Lighting Artist, for another term as a mentor! Frederic has over 20 years of experience lighting animated films, feature films and commercials at an array of studios, including Disney, DreamWorks, Jim Henson’s Workshop, Sony Imageworks, and Digital Domain. Check out his reel and his website—you’ll see plenty of familiar films and commercials. If it’s your dream to bring light to beautiful worlds, Frederic Durand is the perfect mentor for you!

Working with Frederic means you’ll learn a whole lot more than the technical side of lighting in CG. You’ll really explore the artistic side of lighting, as well as what it takes to work on the job as a lighter. He will explain classic filmmaking techniques that have been around for decades, as well as how we apply these methods and ideas in modern computer animated filmmaking. For Frederic, it’s not about how we use the tools, but why we use them.

Hayley Williams, Frederic’s mentee in the Spring 2015 term, said, “I was interested in learning lighting, especially in CG, but I also learned a lot about the business and all the other non-artistic aspects of film/CG/VFX, which I consider just as important. He also gave me a ton of references—books, movies, websites—so I can continue teaching myself, too.”


Frederic has a detailed plan on what he likes to go over with his mentees, but is still absolutely flexible to the goals and needs of each individual. He is willing to take up to three artists from anywhere in the world for a 10 week mentorship—a wonderful opportunity for any aspiring lighter ready to dive into deeper insight about their craft. Frederic is a generous and patient teacher, and looking for a few amazing mentees to brighten up the CG world!

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