Aspiring Entertainment Designers: A Rare Look Inside the Industry
Posted by Elizabeth Alton on Thursday, September 18th, 2014
Have you ever imagined putting your engineering skills to work building the next heart-pounding roller coaster or applying your art skills to illustrating the latest Disney attraction as an Imagineer? You’re not alone. Hundreds of thousands of people have no doubt wondered what it takes to become one of the elite few who bring some of the world’s most imaginative designs to life in theme parks today. Entertainment design is a thriving field that’s growing each year, with a wide variety of attractions being unrolled and numerous opportunities for innovation and pushing the boundaries of technology. But unlike people who dream of becoming nurses or police officers, most people considering careers as entertainment designers have no idea where to start.
To help address this issue, the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) has launched a new webinar series aimed at students and industry newcomers to answer some of their most frequently asked questions, such as:
- What is themed entertainment?
- How do theme parks work?
- How can I build roller coasters?
- What career path should I follow if my dream is to work for Disney, Universal, or another big brand?
- What kinds of teams design museum exhibits, theme park rides, and other attractions?
TEA Talks: A NextGen Web Series is a project of the TEA’s NextGen Committee, a sub-group within the organization. The purpose of the TEA’s NextGen Committee is “to connect students, faculty and recent graduates to the TEA industry, organization and members, supporting and fostering the next generation of TEA members and themed entertainment industry professionals.”
The Themed Entertainment Association itself is an international non-profit organization that represents creators, writers, developers, designers, and producers of compelling experiences worldwide. Their membership includes staff members at some of the industry’s biggest brands, as well as boutique shops and independent creative professionals. The series will take advantage of the association’s diverse membership to give unique insights into different career paths, entry points into the industry, and positions that students and newcomers should consider. Attendees can expect a first-hand look at themed design through discussions, case studies, and presentations.
The first event will include five speakers who range from executives at themed entertainment companies to the creative talent behind some of today’s most popular attractions. The slated guests include:
- Christine Kerr, Vice President of BaAM Productions and President of the TEA International Board
- Steve Birket, Business Development Director at Birket Engineering and President-Elect of the TEA International Board
- Marissa Blake, Entertainment Interior Designer at VOA Associates
- Alex Korting, Principal Creative behind Alex Korting Themed Entertainment Design
- Jason McManus, Creative Director at Lightning in a Bottle
If you’ve ever dreamed of getting to hear from the talent behind your favorite exhibits and want to learn more about what drives the industry, this event is for you. For people unable to attend, a recording of the webinar will be available on the TEA’s website after the event.
The first webinar is happening October 7, 2014. The event is free, but participants must register in advance and seats are limited. To learn more or register, visit the TEA webinar events page currently hosted on EventBrite.
Images via TEA, previous Entertainment Designer post, WDW News