We had the good fortune of connecting with Yuxin Zhu and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Yuxin, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
In my experience, taking risks is an essential part of work, especially when working with unfamiliar people. I experienced two risk events during my thesis project: the first was that the colorist I hired failed to complete the work within the agreed time and refused to continue making subsequent productions, which caused me to squeeze out more of my own time to finish the work; the second was that my first composer never completed revisions, which meant I had to find another composer. From then on, I started finding people I could trust to cooperate as much as possible, or I would verify the workload with a coworker many times before the collaboration began.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I produce music videos using 2D animation and motion graphics. Music is my passion, and I’m eager to experiment with different kinds of music. As a fan of Vocaloid’s music before I studied animation systematically, I repeatedly watched lots of MVs of its songs. (In my definition, Vocaloid is a kind of Japanese pop music created using the Vocaloid program.) Each MV has its own unique style, and they’re usually made with both 2D and text animation using After Effects. It was because of these fascinating and special MVs that I became inspired to try to create music-based animations of my own.
I would like to mention again my professor Michael Patterson. In the second year of my USC education, I took a course taught by him and his wife Candace Reckinger on Visual Music. The class introduced me to visual music in a systematic way, as well as in details that I hadn’t noticed before.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
As an anime fan, the spot I first would think of is definitely Little Tokyo. I love the bookstore there called Kinokuniya. In addition to books and manga, there are a lot of new anime goods that always excite me to check out. Sometimes you can even meet cosplayers in Little Tokyo.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I must shoutout to the professor I am most grateful for, Michael Patterson. He was my professor at USC Animation and also my thesis mentor. He is always passionate about teaching and dedicates a lot of time to his students. Every week, Mike’s office hours are full to capacity, because everyone knows that Mike is the professor who can help them the most, and he is always willing to add extra hours to help students with their problems. Feedback from him is always detailed and constructive, and he is even willing to demonstrate working demos during meetings. I really appreciate him so much.
Other: Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/yuxinzhu