Founded in 2005, Think Tank Training Centre specializes in the latest software, techniques and technologies that cater to the needs of the film, television and video game industries. Think Tank boasts 92% job placement in the CG Industry. In 2015 it was ranked the #1 school in Canada and #3 in the world for film, TV and game production at the CG Student Awards.
Think Tank provides cutting-edge relevant and effective training in VFX, animation and 3D modelling, and their intensive 12 month full-time diploma program gives students the opportunity to learn about every field before choosing their specialization. The school takes great pride in having what they call the 'Think Tank Advantage'. Through first-rate instructors and curriculum, a state of the art facility and a one-of-a-kind mentorship program, students are given every advantage available to make a smooth transition in becoming a trained working professional. The full-time program offers small class sizes of only 12 students per semester, extensive hands-on training and dedicated workstations. All the instructors and mentors are respected industry professionals, and the curriculum is continually revised to keep up with the ever-changing trends. As well, students are able to stay on as long as they need to, free of charge, after graduating to polish up their portfolio.
Think Tank is situated in a beautiful heritage building at the Lonsdale Quay in North Vancouver. To help foster creativity, the inside has been converted into a ‘20,000 leagues under the sea’ theme that features a movie theatre, kitchen, lounge, entertainment area and a life drawing/sculpting room. Think Tank is the brainchild of industry veterans, Scott Thompson and Joseph Bullock, who developed, designed and built the facility from the ground up. Their main goal behind starting the school was to offer a unique learning experience that capitalized on the wealth of all the amazing artists and studios situated in the Vancouver area.
Think Tank takes great pride in offering what they believe is the best program available. Here's what sets them apart:
- Small Class Sizes
Classrooms are set up for 12 students only, and this allows for a tremendous amount of one-on-one time with instructors and fellow classmates.
- Dedicated Workstations
Each student is assigned a state-of-the-art workstation for the duration of the semester. No one else will be able to access this computer. Students regularly leave iPods, wallets, cameras and even money on their desks. Theft is unheard of.
- The Very Best Instructors
At Think Tank we only hire professionals. The tips and tricks our instructors use at work, are the same ones they teach in the classroom. New techniques are being adopted constantly in this rapidly changing industry. The only way you can be relevant and competitive is by learning from professionals.
- The Best Equipment and Software
Think Tank workstations are outfitted with full HD dual widescreen monitors, and we teach the latest industry software. Also, we've created our own renderfarm to handle the output from all the CG workstations in the school. It's very robust and can handle anything thrown at it.
- Personal Mentors
In the final semester students are assigned personal mentors from local studios. If you want to work on environments for Electronic Arts, we do what we can to hire someone from there who works as a lead environment modeler to coach you through your demo reel. He/she meets with you each week and critiques, teaches new techniques, and generally guides you to a successful demo reel.
- Continued Support
If for some reason you don’t get a job after you finish your year, you may stay on and continue to study for free with a dedicated station for as long as you want. Nobody else offers that kind of support.
- Job Placement
At this time we have very high placement for our graduate students. Committing to an expensive CG training program is one of the most challenging endeavors you will face. Do your homework, ask questions and demand good answers. At Think Tank we want students to leave employed, happy and knowing they made the right choice.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the program's credentials?
We offer a diploma program in 3D Computer Animation, Visual Effects and Game Design.
Do I need to know how to draw to get in the program?
Drawing is a plus but not at all a prerequisite. In fact, we spend a good deal of time teaching drawing and design techniques. Anyone can learn to draw better with a basic understanding of simple principles. That being said, there are many very successful artists working in this field that have very limited drawing skills. Don’t let this hold you back.
Can I start without any knowledge of 3D?
Yes, it’s not necessary to have any prior training. Most people know a little Photoshop or a similar program but it’s not essential. We start with the basics.
When do the semesters start and how long is the course?
The semesters start in early February, June and October. Our program runs for 3 x four month semesters. Remember, with the “Think Tank Advantage” you can stay indefinitely, free of charge, after the year is up!
Do you accept international students?
Yes, we do! We have had students from Brazil, Venezuela, Russia, Sweden, Mexico, USA, India, the UK, Israel, South Africa and many more. You can get a visa/study permit* from the Canadian consulate in your home country. You will need an official 'Letter of Acceptance' from Think Tank in order to apply for it.
*Some countries require a visa to enter Canada, and all countries require a study permit to study in Canada. You must have an official 'Letter of Acceptance', as well as a passport valid for the full year of study at Think Tank in order to get your visa/study permit.
What software do you use?
We teach Maya, Softimage, Nuke, ZBrush, Mudbox, Mari, Toonboom, Photoshop and a host of peripheral programs.
This school offers programs in: