Rookies win global industry connections

Congratulations to Flinders University/CDW Studios students Jordan Soar, Nate Thorman and Tai Bennett who are winners in the 2021 Rookie Awards, the leading global contest for aspiring creatives in games, animation, visual effects, immersive media, motion graphics and 3D visualisation.

Jordan Soar’s “Realm of Hemu” from the 2021 Rookies Awards

Honours student Jordan Soar is the People’s Choice winner of the Concept Art award, with a portfolio that centred on fantasy and science fiction environment concepts for the entertainment industry. Jordan says the win has reinforced his belief in himself and his work, and he looks forward to what the future holds.

“Winning the People’s Choice award was a big surprise,” says Jordan. “I’ve always had a deep love and passion for films, TV and games, which is what led me towards entertainment art industries. Winning this award has given me a lot of encouragement, showing that my study and potential career are on the right track.”

Nate Thorman’s “RE:GEN” from the 2021 Rookie Awards

Nate Thorman was chosen as one of five winners who each have the opportunity to undertake a telephone interview with Epic Games and the talent team looking to hire applicants.

Tai Bennett won a virtual mentorship with IO Interactive and plans to use the opportunity to pick the brains of the pros, to help develop his skill set.

Tai Bennett’s “Crescent Crusade” from the 2021 Rookie Award

“This mentorship has been a huge confidence boost for me, so I’ll be making sure I get the most out of it,” says Tai. “I want to focus on building and improving my portfolio, and hopefully I’ll be able to receive some constructive criticism on any weaknesses I may have, so I can improve and set myself up for the future.

“I’m really excited that I’ll get to meet industry professionals, so I’ll be getting a list of questions ready to ask them!”


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