Women in gaming: Interview with 3D Generalist at TT Games

Article written by Andy Turton, Director of X4 Technology.

The role of a 3D Generalist is diverse, involving lots of elements such as animation, motion capture, modelling and rigging. It’s also hugely rewarding collaborating with other artists and game developers and getting to watch an environment or character come together over time (as well as seeing gamers enjoy the games themselves).

As part of X4 Technology’s women in gaming series, I recently spoke to Ashley Riza, 3D Generalist at TT Games to find out about her career journey and thoughts on diversity in the industry.

We also delved into what’s important to her when joining a games studio and the role she’s playing in a male-dominated industry by speaking up and leading the way for future female leaders to pursue a career in what is a truly exciting industry.

What attracted you to the gaming industry?

I’ve been a gamer since I was a little kid but never really considered it as a career path. I grew up in Hong Kong where working in the games industry didn’t feel accessible to me, I didn’t realise that breaking into the industry was an option until I moved to London and landed a role at an advertising agency working on apps.

In a twist of fate, I got made redundant which resulted in me re-evaluating what I wanted to do and realising gaming was a passion that I wanted to pursue – and here we are 6 years later!

I love the diversity of art styles, platforms and genres in the games industry. There are so many options and different avenues to go down as a career path, it never feels stagnant.

What is your favourite part of the job?

My favourite part of the job is creating beautiful artwork and collaborating with other artists and game developers. I love seeing an environment or a character come together in stages over time. And of course, seeing people enjoy what you’ve created after all the hard work is an amazing feeling that will never get old!

What do you look for when joining a gaming studio?

I always make sure to look for roles where I can learn and grow as an artist, which generally relates to the team I will be working with, the games that will be created and the art style.

Being in a relaxing and fun environment is important, as well as having understanding colleagues and good benefits.

What do you think are the biggest challenges for females in the gaming industry?

Luckily, I haven’t faced much discrimination in the industry due to my gender, however, I do know others who have. If I have ever felt like my voice wasn’t being heard, I have been sure to stand up and speak louder. I used to find it very intimidating to voice my opinions, however, I have realised that in the right studios and with the right people, having women around is celebrated and welcomed.

Being the person to bring a female perspective to a studio can be challenging, but very rewarding and help the studio and its vision as a whole. I only see more and more women working in the games industry going forward which is great to see.

What advice would you give to a female professional considering working in the gaming industry?

If you have the passion, then go for it! What matters when working in game development is your love for the industry, passion for your job and being a hard worker.

Take advantage of the amazing organisations and mentorships for women in the industry, specifically Women In Games, which has many ambassadors and mentors, including myself, to advise and support when needed.

Don’t let the lack of women deter you from working in an industry that brings so much happiness to so many people, including yourself. Be part of the change and the movement rather than shy away from it.

I like to see our role as females in a male-dominated industry as leading the way for future generations, and that makes it worth it in itself.

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