This period of my career on the Uncharted series (Playstation 3) marked a big shift into much more grounded and realistic style of animation. Animation became more than just working with a mouse and computer. It now involved directing actors and athletes on a motion capture stage, working with a much larger team of animators, as well as learning to animate with a much higher degree of fidelity and realism such that keyframed animation and real human performances became seamlessly interwoven.
The focus of my work has centered on interactive animation which is one of the most complex and difficult disciplines to master. Interactive animation is far too often under appreciated and underdeveloped within the animation industry. It has become my passion to raise the bar of interactive animation as a respected form of art.
This video is a compilation of character animations done between 1999 and 2006, including projects featured at the Hershey theme park attraction in Pennsylvania, as well as Jak II and Jak 3 for Playstation 2. I always look back fondly on this period of animation when the process was more light-hearted and pure in its art form.
This video captures the early years of my career when I was more of an all around digital artist vs. character animation focused. I created almost all you see here (i.e., modeling, texturing, lighting, compositing & animation).
I have been passionate about capturing images since I was given my first camera at the age of six. Then in 2007 I began photographing portraits and weddings as a side career. This adventure was born solely out of the desire to create my own art and push my boundaries as a photographer. Here is a small sampling of my delve into the exciting world of professional portrait photography.
Would you like to see more?
It is said that your best camera is the one that is with you. Over the last few years I have embraced the art of mobile photography. All images here are 100% shot and edited on an iPhone.
I was recently interviewed in an article for my iPhone art.
You can read about it here.
I’ve had an interest in cinematography and videography since the 8th grade. Elements of this have been used throughout my photography and animation careers and have now found themselves showing up in my family vacation videos.
Japan, spring of 2016
Canon 5d Mark III (24-70mm)
Our family vacation to Maui. It was a wonderful time of unwinding, exploring, adventuring, and enjoying the island paradise with our two kids.
Canon 5d Mark III (24-70mm) and GoProHero 3
Our version of a Christmas card.
Canon 5d Mark III (16-35mm)
Animation allows me to breath life into lifeless objects. I tell stories and sculpt emotion by posing and creating movement. It has given me a very keen eye into analyzing the world around me.
Photography draws upon the same discipline by allowing me to capture life. A good portrait photographer needs two important skills – to recognize special moments and react within a split second to capture it, as well as to help recreate, when needed, peak moments that may be too difficult to capture.
Being a photographer makes me a better animator. And being an animator drives me to be a better photographer.
Lead Character Animator
2002 – Present (16+ years) Santa Monica, CA
My first projects at Naughty Dog were JakII and 3. My responsibilities included animating the creatures and cinematics, as well as contributing to the hi-res print team.
At the end of Jak 3, I was promoted to lead gameplay animator on our first PS3 project, Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune. My responsibilities included leading the interactive animation team, architecting our animation pipeline, directing motion capture shoots, and developing our hero character, Nathan Drake.
My responsibilities continued onto Uncharted 2 until about halfway through the project, I moved onto managing the interactive cinematic team. Uncharted 2 won game of the year, and our team walked away with the AIAS Outstanding Achievement in Animation award.
Then in Uncharted 3, I merged both the gameplay and interactive animation teams. My responsibilities included managing the team of now 17 animators, developing the hero character, directing the majority of our team’s motion capture shoots, animating interactive cinematics, and doing my best to inspire the team to push the boundaries in interactive animation. We won another AIAS Outstanding Achievement in Animation as well as an Annie nomination for Best Animation in a Video Game.
Uncharted 4 was our studios’ swan song to the well received franchise. Now with the horsepower of the PS4, we set out to make the Uncharted of our dreams. My responsibilities as lead were mainly focused on player animation and interactive cinematics. In addition to supervisory roles, I animated Drakes completely reimagined climbing system.
I currently hold the role as lead animator on Naughty Dog’s highly anticipated The Last of Us Part II.
Jeremy Yates Photography
June 2007 – June 2011 (4 years 1 month)
Photographed wedding, engagement, lifestyle, and children’s portraits.
January 2000 – October 2002 (2 years 10 months)
My primary focus was on character animation for various animated shorts and vfx films.
June 1999 – January 2000 (8 months)
Worked on a few commercials
VFX Artist / Character Animator
July 1998 – June 1999 (1 year)
Digital matte paintings, character animation, modeling, texturing, lighting, compositing for various films, commercials, and a television series.
Character Animator / artist / instructor
Vision Scape Imaging
June 1997 – September 1998 (1 year 4 months)
character animation, modeling, lighting, texturing for video game cinematics. Instructor at the Lab.
Character Animator / artist
Blue Sky Software
January 1997 – June 1997 (6 months)
Lead artist on a video game project.
Twitter – https://twitter.com/Jeremy_Yates
Instagram – http://instagram.com/jeremy_yates
Vimeo – https://vimeo.com/jeremyyates
LinkedIn – http://www.linkedin.com/in/jeremyyates
Original Website (if you want to go WAY back) – Old art gallery – http://www.jeremyyates.com/jeremy/home_index.html