Let’s introduce Ray Rossetti, 3D artist and animator, who wanted to become an artist since childhood.
Please introduce yourself:
Hello, My name is Raquel – or short Ray – Rossetti. I’m a 25-year-old freelance 3D artist and animator with a multicultural background. I was born and grew up in Germany. I have now been working in the German games industry for around a year and a half. So I’m still at the beginning of my career.
How did you get into the video games industry?
Since I was a little kid, I knew I wanted to become an artist. I always used to draw and write stories. When I was around 12 though I played a game that mesmerized me, from the narrative to the visuals, that was the point when I thought to myself: “this is what I want to do”. I want to create characters and bring them to life in breathtaking worlds, creating art that others will enjoy as much as I did and stories that are inspiring. However, my actual journey to specifically become a 3D artist started several years later when I got an internship at a VFX company in my hometown. I was part of HR since I had no clue about any software or pipelines, but I was able to get to know every department in the production pipeline and was able to gain insights of the 3D artists and compositors. Shortly after, I applied for a newly founded Game school and graduated with a Bachelor in Game Arts in 2018. Later, I was lucky enough to more or less slide right into freelance life due to upcoming game projects by startup companies and small studios. My journey into the games industry has still not ended. There is always something to learn, people to connect with and of course…games to play.
In your opinion, what efforts the video game industry can make to attract and retain black women talents?
Games used to be a male-dominated industry, however more and more females are joining in worldwide. Games bring people of all kinds together. And that is how the industry should be as well. It shouldn’t matter who you are, as in which gender you have or what the colour of your skin is. It should only matter that you work hard for your skills and show ambition. I can only talk from my own experiences and have only scratched the surface of the industry, but I hope we are already in this way.
Still, I think for every industry, it is crucial to give everyone that shows ambition a chance and a voice. It is easier for people to be encouraged to get into an industry if they see themselves represented and welcomed. On the one hand, these kinds of online and offline panels and talks are a great way to give diverse people a platform to talk about and exchange their experience at work. On the other hand representation in media, in games. Meaning positive representation of various characters that don’t feel forced, but natural is something the whole entertainment industry has to work on. But that is a different topic.
Any words of advice for anyone looking to be part of the games industry today?
When you found your passion, you are already one step in. Play with it. Be creative, do little projects at home and finish them, find ways to collaborate with other creatives and don’t be afraid to talk to people in the industry, connect with others online, ask for advice and feedback in and outside of your community. There is much potential in games. More and more studios get founded every year, and you might have the chance to find or found one of the next studios that will actively shape the industry yourself.
You’ll never know if you don’t try. It is a bumpy road to get into and to stay in the creative field. Some jobs are more secure than others, and recurring self-doubt for your craft or project is not uncommon. But find a balance between your work, passion and life and don’t let yourself be discouraged. So in short: Just start somewhere and don’t necessarily wait for the “perfect” opportunity. If you want to be in the games industry, but feel like you wouldn’t belong because maybe most people you see are male or white or whatever. Find a way to own your uniqueness. If everybody is or thought the same, there wouldn’t be any new innovative designs and ideas coming around. I believe that is the beauty in creating and shaping a diverse field.