Animation graduate gets entrepreneurial — and flies


18 Sep 2017

Steve TeuneHERO



Animation graduate gets entrepreneurial — and flies

18 Sep 2017

From baker to roofer to maintenance man to… Animator — it’s not the traditional career path and often these are the best. Steve Teune, who graduated from SAE Perth with a Bachelor of Animation, did plenty of exploring in his early days and his investigative approach has led him to dynamic places in a field that rewards innovation and entrepreneurialism.

It’s lucky for the world of animation that Steve didn’t open a Michelin-worthy bakery — Steve is a 9th generation baker, trained by his dedicated father and even won a National Silver Medal as an apprentice. Yet, Steve followed his deeper passion and has applied all that natural talent to his visual career. Since graduating in 2014, Steve has cultivated himself into a freelancer-in-demand, a challenging but fruitful path allowing him to expand and refine his skills in film, video, animation and motion graphics. It all lead to a full time position at Ok Media Group in Perth where Steve is now the Animation and Visual Effects guy.

Along the way, he had plenty of career highs, including working on two Australian feature films — in 2015, he was a production assistant on the buzzy Aussie prequel Red Dog: True Blue, following the 2011 blockbuster, Red Dog. It was a busy time following in 2016, as Steve stepped onto set as 3rd Assistant Director of the psychological thriller, Bad Girl, which has gained awards and acclaim on the festival circuit.



None of this came easy though: for a while, Steve struggled to find a job. Calling on his earlier resourcefulness and the connection he’d felt at SAE, Steve reached out to professionals he admired on LinkedIn. There were plenty of non responses, but one reply was invaluable: former SAE lecturer Dan Moller offered the advice that turned things around. “He told me to treat myself like a business and to get ‘entrepreneurial’. This changed everything for me.” 


What inspired you to study animation?

The first episode of the Walking Dead. When Rick gets stuck in the tank. There is a bird’s eye shot of the tank and the street with hordes of zombies heading for the tank. I was curious as to how this was pulled off so I started looking into VFX. After that Animation and VFX became my favourite hobby. I would come home from a day of attempting to be a salesman and stay up all night doing tutorials on modelling and rigging.

I used similar crowd simulation software to create my final assignment at SAE.

What did you love most about studying at SAE?

It was an endless resource. SAE allowed me to immerse myself in what I love doing and to explore it with other creatives. It’s always great when a whole lot of creative people work towards one final product.

Can you share how the skills you learned while studying at SAE have helped you in your career?

Honestly, SAE made the difference between treating Animation as a hobby and as a profession. The basic foundations of animation are crucial in the day to day of the job and SAE helped me create a solid foundation. It was also great to work on larger projects — this is definitely something that SAE prepared me for. Being creative and effective in a team is a skill of its own.

What have been your career highlights?

Working on feature films and contributing to something so many people are working hard to make great. I’m also really excited about my job with Ok Media Group; we are working on some fantastic projects, including a really large project with the WA Government that involves VR and a huge range of different media. I’m still learning new stuff daily.

What do you enjoy most about working in your industry?

I enjoy being challenged every day. Getting paid to be creative and playing with awesome technology is like a dream come true.

Can you share an artist that inspires you?

Felix Colgrave – he has such a rad animation style. 



Pretty big Rick and Morty fan too.

What advice would you give to students aspiring to become successful their field?

Make as many friends as you can. If you’re planning on a career in this industry, you will run into the same people over and over again. If you work hard and have a strong network people will want to work with you again.



This and That Game:

Converse or Vans? I own and wear both, today it’s Vans.

Coffee or Tea? Coffee in the morning, Tea throughout the day.

Apple or Android? The ones that don’t blow up.


Follow Steve:


Steve Teune:





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