Though ‘Mentorship’ was last month’s theme, we saw the following post on Sigi Klar’s blog and asked for his permission to post it here, which he happily permitted.
Last year I was lucky enough to be accepted into the Audio Mentoring Project (click here for details) and I undertook a very enriching mentorship that helped me grow a lot as a Sound Designer.
What is the AMP you ask? Well the AMP is a collection of seasoned practitioners and developers in the Game Audio Industry. Together these professionals have volunteered their time and energy to form a council to help pair upcoming and aspiring Sound Designers with veteran professionals already in the industry.
The AMP aims to pair you with a mentor that really suits your needs based on your application. As an example, I am very passionate about AAA shooter games and I aspire to work in the AAA scene (DICE PLZ). I was therefore lucky enough to be paired with an Audio Lead from one of the large AAA companies.
My mentor really helped me learn a lot about the AAA pipelines and get a broader understanding about the workflows of large AAA Studios. We also worked on a small demo level SCI-FI shooter together using screen share to work within the UNREAL 4 and WWISE during our calls. I learnt a lot about profiling and troubleshooting during these sessions and as well as the best practices and naming conventions.
I also got feedback on two showreels and some super valuable advice in regards to my freelance business.
So what advice can I give to anyone that is considering applying?
1. Firstly … JUST DO IT:
Honestly apply and you will not regret it. My personal experience was highly enriching and inspirational to say the least.
2. It’s okay to be nervous but don’t stress about your first call:
My first skype call was terrifying… for about 30 seconds. It’s easy to place people on a pedestal but I soon realized that my mentor was a super friendly down to earth person that was here to help me.
3. Respect your mentor and appreciate the opportunity:
The AMP is built around volunteers and community. Your mentor has given up their time to help guide you so please value their time and understand what a valuable FREE resource you have been gifted with.
My biggest regret during my mentorship was that I didn’t communicate with my mentor as much as I could have. Make sure to engage with your mentor and let them know how you’re doing.
5. Have goals and questions ready for your mentor:
I don’t think our calls would have been quite so productive if I didn’t have a list of questions ready for my mentor beforehand.
6. Be open to feedback:
As in the real world of Sound Design you are going to occasionally be critiqued or given advice on better ways to achieve a sound or goal. Don’t take it personal! Instead listen and take on board the feedback you’re given!
In summary I would highly encourage anyone to apply! If you’re vested in Game Audio it is too good of an opportunity to turn down! Regardless if you’ve been freelancing for years or perhaps fresh out of college the AMP will have a mentor to fit your level!
I’d like to thank the AMP and my mentor for the opportunity and with that I will leave you with a small snippet of the level we worked on (: