The winners have been announced in the Autodesk-sponsored The Rookies 2017 student competition.
A total of 2,752 students from 627 academic institutions in 81 countries, submitted 8,725 projects during this competition. This is massive, and a tremendous platform to showcase some of the talented workers coming into the industry today. It’s also something we should all be happy to see, as more new ground-breaking work shows our industry is not sitting still.
Shawn Wang from the USA, is the Animation 2017 Rookie of the Year with ‘Planet Unknown’. [hero shot above]
Mateusz Adamski from Denmark, is the Architecture 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Loic Salan, from the United Kingdom, is the Film Production 2017 Rookie of the Year with ‘Eileen’.
Maria Rodriguez from Australia, is the Graphic Design 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Maxime Delcambre from France, is the Illustration 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Jan Sebastian Van Ackeran from Italy, is the Industrial Design 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Eli Goulliu from the USA, is the Motion Graphics 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Robin Tran from Sweden, is the Next Gen Gaming 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Lanli Su from the USA, is the Photography 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Kevin Decatoire from France, is the Visual Effects 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Lukas Garliauskas from the United Kingdom, is the Virtual Reality 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Ziwei Wang from Canada, is the Web and Mobile 2017 Rookie of the Year.
Similar to the EXPOSÉ entry judging, the selection of winners were hitting a level of complexity every year. The judges were asked to explore each potential winners’ portfolios and not just checking out individual pieces of work being submitted. They were looking at their full potential as well.
The official categories for 2017 were: Animation, Architecture, Film Production, Graphic Design, Illustration, Industrial Design, Motion Graphics, Gaming, Photography, Visual Effects, Virtual Reality, Web & Mobile, and special categories like Film of the Year (Visual Effects, Animation, Film Production), and Game of the Year (Console and PC, Virtual Reality, Web & Mobile).
In the Rookies, this year students also competed for Studio Internships and Willow Paquette was the winner, and Academic Scholarships, brought home by three lucky winners. Azusa Tojo from Japan. Abigail Nath from Auckland, and Guilia Arnaboldi from Cantu in Italy.
“People are genuinely shocked when they discover how amazing the student work is these days — even after all these years we are still constantly blown away with the quality and diversity of new talent,” said Alwyn Hunt, co- founder of The Rookies.
The judging panel for the 2017 Rookies consisted of Weta Digital’s Joe Letteri, Gino Acevedo and John Howe. Rising Sun Pictures brought in Shane Aherne from Adelaide, Nick Angus came along from Alt.vfx in Brisbane and Matthew Allen came across from Monolith Productions in Seattle. From my work producing the annual Ballistic books, I totally understand the massive effort creating, collating and judging all this material and applaud everyone involved.