Senior Animator

Toronto, Ontario, ca
Company: SideFX
Published on 2021-03-31 08:29:20

Note: Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, in order to keep all of our employees and candidates safe, SideFX is hiring and onboarding remotely.

Position Overview 

SideFX is seeking an exceptional professional with a passion for the animator’s craft and a vision for the future of animation to join its Toronto-based R&D team. As our company embarks on redefining the way CG creatures come to life in film and game production, you will play an essential role in influencing the direction of Houdini’s new animation toolset and user experience. You will be right at the heart of a constantly evolving synergy between technology and art, always in touch with our users and peers in the media and entertainment industry. Whether you are artist-focused or technology-oriented, you will have ample opportunity to grow professionally and make significant contributions to the success of our products.

As a member of the SideFX Research and Development group, you would be working with the some of the brightest minds in the CG industry. Our R&D team has received many prestigious industry awards, including four Technical Achievement Awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, an Academy Award of Merit (Oscar®), a Technology and Engineering Emmy® Award from NATAS, and four back-to-back Editor's Choice Innovation Awards from CG World Magazine. Movies using our toolset have received the Oscar® for Best Visual Effects every year in the past two decades. We share a passion for innovation in computer graphics and a drive for excellence in animation. Providing digital artists with the best and most advanced tools for their craft is, and has always been, our singular focus.

Overview Key Duties and Responsibilities*

  • Provide creative solutions to help delivering a best-in-class, next-gen animation system that matches Houdini’s game-changing approach to procedural rigging and motion editing
  • Work very closely with our KineFX software developers, our CFX experts and our rigging TD’s to map out the requirements of the character animation environment, including toolset, workflow, performance, and physical simulation
  • Help define, validate and refine the toolset and user experience throughout the design process
  • Integrate user feedback and business requirements into ongoing product experience updates
  • Support alpha/beta testers and early adopters of the animation system
  • Occasionally assist marketing efforts by producing animated demo material for product launches and interfacing with artists at Houdini-related community events
  • Other duties as assigned
  • *Adjustments will be made to enable duties & responsibilities to be met working remotely considering the current Covid-19 pandemic situation.

    Required Skills and Experience

  • 5+ years animation experience in feature animation, VFX feature films, TV series or games
  • Strong hands-on expertise in producing high-end character animation
  • Thorough understanding of traditional animation principles and techniques
  • Demonstrated knowledge of main principles of character performance: timing, posing, acting, staging, nuance, conveying story and emotion
  • Ability to animate multiple characters with props, facial animation and lip-syncing
  • Experience with mocap data acquisition, motion clip editing, cleanup, and refinement
  • Advanced knowledge of rigging requirements and techniques
  • Innovative spirit, paired with the ability to solve problems creatively
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills (English)
  • Exceptional collaboration and interpersonal skills
  • Bonus skills

  • First-hand experience with Houdini and/or large-studio proprietary animation software
  • Experience with working closely with software engineers and UX designers
  • Passion for making things better for animators
  • Vision for the future of rigging and animation
  • Production-level rigging experience
  • A demoreel or URL to online portfolio along with your resume must be provided when applying in order to be considered for this role. 

    For over thirty years, SideFX has been providing artists with procedural 3D animation and visual effects tools designed to produce the highest-quality cinematic results. We are passionate about what our customers do because our roots are in production, both as artists and as pioneering technical innovators. SideFX has been recognized by the Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Science several times for its flagship software product Houdini and its seminal procedural-based technology.

    Houdini is used by the world’s top film, TV, and game studios to create blockbuster movies such as Black Panther and Moana, captivating TV shows like American Gods and Games of Thrones, and hit video games like Horizon Zero Dawn and Mafia III. Our customers include Disney Feature Animation, Pixar, Sony Pictures Imageworks, Weta Digital, Blue Sky, Electronic Arts, Microsoft Game Studios, Blizzard Entertainment, and many more.


    Our transit-friendly head office location, directly adjacent to Union Station in the heart of downtown Toronto, is open-concept with a relaxed style that includes, casual dress, and wraparound views from the 14th floor.

    SideFX is committed to inclusion and diversity. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply. Accommodation will be provided to candidates with disabilities, upon request. 

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