The former Noroff student works as an animator at Framestore in London. - I never thought I would be one of those people who would breathe life into characters like Rocket and Groot.

Iselin Davø Fredriksen (31) has been studying design and animation (now called 3D design and game technology) on campus in Oslo. Earlier she studied psychology at the University of Oslo, but after five years she felt like doing something completely different.

I've always loved drawing and painting, so my fiancé suggested that I try out the 3D program "Blender", and after an online tutorial from Blender Guru, I was hooked.

Four months later, Iselin was sitting on campus in Oslo. Both her psychology studies and her background in theater have helped her in her role as an animator.

I like to think that absolutely everything you do in life gets you where you need to be, you don't need to have a plan ready.

Noroff brings in external people

After her studies at Noroff, Iselin was lucky enough to land an internship at Qvisten Animation in Oslo, where she worked on her first film and gained experience in film production. Afterwards, she also took several online courses where she specialized in different types of character animation.

We got a glimpse of absolutely everything during our studies.Iselin Davø Fredriksen

Noroff gave me a good foundation to build on, but it's important to keep developing even after you've finished school. 3D is a constantly evolving profession, so it's important to keep learning.

She returned as a teacher of animation a few years after completing her studies. She feels that Noroff is good at bringing in external people with knowledge, so that students are taught by specialists in the industry, while also having the opportunity to make contacts before they finish their studies. The former Noroff student says that what's great about Noroff is that students gain an understanding of all parts of a 3D pipeline.

This makes communication between the artists flow better. We got a glimpse of absolutely everything during our studies. I thought I was going to be a modeler, but then I fell so hard for animation that I've never looked back.

Making it through the eye of the needle

Iselin was offered the opportunity to work at Framestore in London through an onboarding program in the summer of 2021, an offer for "Entry Level Artists" who have not worked in large companies before. The needle eye was small as they only took in 14 animators from all over the world, Iselin was one of them.

Here I got to learn Linux, get to know the production rigs and pipeline at Framestore for a few weeks before I was put into my first real production. It was a soft start into the industry, which I'm very grateful for, she say

Recently, the 31-year-old has been working on the animation of Guardians of the Galaxy vol.3, which opens on May 5 this year.

I never thought I would be one of those people who would breathe life into characters like Rocket and Groot. If I had told 12-year-old Iselin that, she would never have believed me, she jokes.

She continues:

James Gunn is a fantastic filmmaker who knows what he wants, which has meant that it has been almost seamless from start to finish. It's been an absolutely fantastic project to work on, says Iselin.

This is Iselin's third Marvel project and she has learned that each project brings its own set of challenges.

I've learned an incredible amount and become a much stronger animator over the past two years, and I'm so grateful that I get to learn from the extremely talented colleagues I have around me. I'm already working on the next movie and I'm really excited about what the future will bring, she says.

It's been an absolutely fantastic project to work on.Iselin Davø Fredriksen

- You have to dream big

What the former Noroff student misses most from her time as a student is the everyday life with her classmates.

I miss how we inspired each other to learn new things and how engaged our teachers were when we wanted to try something outside the curriculum. The community you have at school is invaluable. Life on campus was really quite similar to life in the industry, but of course there was more room for trial and error on campus.

What are your goals as an animator?

The last time I had an interview with Noroff and was asked that question, I said that I wanted to go to England and hopefully end up at Dreamworks in the future. Now I'm in England, so surely Dreamwork is next? I say what I said at the time: "you have to dream big".

Iselin says that animation is a fantastic profession, but that it takes time to become good at it. She has a clear message for others who want a career in animation.

Dedicate time to getting good at the subject, because school won't give you anything if you don't dedicate yourself to the work. My best tip is to think of school as a workplace.

Don't let the fact that someone is better than you stop you. There will always be someone better, and that's great because it means you can learn from them. We're all at different stages and can learn from each other.

She also encourages being proactive and getting to know people from the industry.

Noroff is good at bringing in industry people, so take full advantage of that, she concludes.

Noroff is good at bringing in industry people, so take full advantage of that. Iselin Davø Fredriksen

Iselin Fredriksens work at Animation 2022 Framestore.

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