Bachelor of Animation student, Bruce Daya created a world with domesticated giant insects and his imaginative efforts were rewarded with a third place in the prestigious Gwangmyeong Concept Design Competition (GCDC) run by Weta Workshop in Wellington.
Now in its fifth year, the GCDC is open to all New Zealand students of any age and any discipline, with the winner going to South Korea for a week, and all three placegetters receiving a Wacom tablet. The competition is the result of a partnership between Weta Workshop, founded by Richard Taylor, and Mayor Yang Ki-dae of Gwangmyeong City in South Korea.
The competition brief asked students to imagine a famous international television producer was making a new series based around a fantastical land on an unknown planet, not unlike our own planet – in the Medieval period. As a year three, Bachelor of Animation student, Bruce developed a theme around insects, and created an ant colony which was heading back to the anthill castle, and also a dragon-grasshopper hunt scene with the same knights-on-ants design.
As in previous years, the judging panel consisted of Weta Workshop co-founder, Richard Taylor, and key members of the Weta Workshop Design Studio. The same designers whose recent work includes Pacific Rim Uprising, A Wrinkle in Time, Blade Runner 2049, and the Netflix series Altered Carbon.
For Bruce, the competition highlighted the skills he wishes to finesse, but also the obstacles he has overcome in the past to place in the competition. Bruce said, “I’m aiming to be a concept artist for big films or games. I want to design environments, characters and creatures that are out of this world. I have also discovered my passion for filming through the bachelor programme. I would like to write and direct fictional films like Avatar, Lord of the Rings, Marvel movies and the like. It’s exciting!”
Animation College is the only educational college in New Zealand to teach 2D and 3D animation at both a diploma and bachelor degree level, and encourages all its students to enter industry competitions to have their work acknowledged on global platforms.