Katie Woods’ Superpowers:
- Diversity in skills: I can do a lot or I’ll learn how to do it.
- Communication: I will bug the heck out of you if I need something to do my job.
- Excitability: I get really excited about things, work or otherwise, and I will be excited on calls and make memes if I feel passionate about something.
Katie Woods ’18 is an Animation & Game Arts alum, part of the program’s second-ever graduating class. Right after graduating, she moved to San Diego, CA for a job as a motion designer with Viasat, the organization Woods where she completed her internship. She worked with Viasat until 2021, when she joined the motion design team at Brazen Animation, a Texas-based animation studio, where she works fully remote, allowing for more time to invest in her other interests.
“I’ve begun diving into music and performing again, working out and fitness, as well as volunteering with the Orphan Kitten Club,” she says. “These things help me get out of the house and find fulfillment in things other than my job and creative projects.”
The career path that Woods has found herself on is very different from what she envisioned for herself while she was at Moore. “I remember, at Moore, I was stubbornly saying ‘I’m going to work as a character designer at Cartoon Network and that’s just what’s gonna happen!’” she recalls. “[But] after my internship I learned there are so many more things I can do with my skill set.” Woods also realized that her personality meshed better with a full-time motion graphics job. “I like the stability, the creativity I get with multiple projects and [I can] flex my abilities without burning out. I can still draw at the end of the day and pursue projects such as children’s book illustration, which I do on the side.”
Looking back, the most important thing Woods learned at Moore was how to learn—specifically how to pick up things like software programs quickly, which has allowed her to pursue a wide range of skills. The ability to learn also helped her become self-sufficient and adept at seeking information independently.
“At Moore, we are given projects to take in whatever direction we want, which I think encourages students to take their concepts, plus what they learned in class, and expand on it with free resources,” she says.
Woods has three pieces of advice for current Moore students. First: don’t limit yourself to studio jobs—expand your search as broadly as possible, and consider corporate jobs, which can often allow for more creative freedom and better work-life balance. Second: practice life drawing and basic skills, even if you don’t think it’s relevant to your art. And finally: take breaks and invest in hobbies outside of art.
“I think a lot of students, including past Katie, feel like if they aren’t working or drawing, they aren’t doing anything,” she says. “You aren’t just a machine that produces artwork; you’re a person with a bunch of hobbies and interests. Don’t burn yourself out.”