Animation and VFX Trainee Placement Program, funding, images

Animation and VFX Trainee Placement Program

The Animation and VFX Trainee Placement Program provides skills development opportunities in the animation and visual effects industry.

Screen NSW will provide subsidies to leading NSW host companies to employ trainees in either a creative or technical field for paid, six-month placements. The placement intends to provide real working experience in film, television and interactive projects with host companies.

In 2023, Five NSW companies are involved in the program: Animal Logic, Black Bird, Cutting Edge, Fin and Plastic Wax.  There are up to 10 trainee placments avaiable.

Eligibility and Key Criteria

  • Applicants must be a NSW resident
  • Applicants must be an Australian citizen or Permanent Resident.                                                
  • Applications must be from individuals

NSW resident refers to a person residing in NSW for at least six months before making an application.

Applicants selected are likely (but not required) to have one or more of the following:

  • A background in screen production (film, TV, video games, webseries and music videos)
  • Digital media training
  • A degree from an accredited fine arts or screen media course
  • A portfolio demonstrating experience in CG production or software engineering
  • Experience as an artist, designer or software engineer with the desire to cross over into animation and VFX                       

Guidelines are available here

Host company partners for the program are leading Australian visual effects and creative digital studios.

Applying for a Program:

All applications must be received through the Screen NSW online grants administration system, SmartyGrants. 

Apply online here.

Applications open on Tuesday 29 November.

Applications will close at 5:00 pm on Monday 23 January 2023 AEST.

For more information contact Lynda Carruthers by email at if you would like to discuss your proposed project.

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The Animation and VFX Trainee Placement Program provides skills development opportunities in the animation and visual effects industry. Through the program Screen NSW will provide subsidies to leading NSW companies to employ trainees in either a creative or technical field for six-month placements. The intention of the placement is to provide real working experience in film, television and interactive projects.


  1. Develop and increase the local talent pool in the creative and technical area of digital production
  2. Support the development of animation and VFX talent by providing training and mentoring in aprofessional industry environment.
  3. Fulfillment of available employment opportunities with local talent.
  4. Support diversity & inclusion through welcoming and encouraging people from underrepresented groups to apply.
How do I apply?

You can apply for the Animation and VFX Trainee Placement Program using our online application form from Monday 25 October.

How are applications assessed and selected?

A panel made up of Screen NSW representatives and independent industry representatives assesses the applications, and compiles a shortlist within four weeks of the application closing date. 

Applicants are selected to the shortlist based on: the merits of their application, the selection criteria (pg.3 of the guidelines), and in competition with all of the other applications. 

The shortlisted materials are then circulated to the participating companies for consideration. Each company reviews the materials and nominates candidates that they would like to interview. 

From those interviews the company decides which applicants, if any, they would like to offer a traineeship. Screen NSW liaises directly with the companies throughout the process, and contacts applicants if an interview is requested, or if a placement is offered. 

A maximum of eight placements may be made in each round. However, the maximum number may not be reached, as the opportunities that are available are dependent on the needs of the companies involved.


Selection criteria – What sort of skills are companies looking for?

Screen NSW has developed the selection criteria, and the general terms and conditions of the traineeships, in collaboration with participating companies. 

Teamwork and good communication skills are absolutely essential. An understanding of film and/or television production processes is not required but is highly regarded. The criteria below are an example of the skills companies are looking for. Preference will be given to applicants whose submissions address the criteria in their selected area of focus. Meeting the criteria does not guarantee a placement through the Program. 

What happens if I am placed with a company?

Successful applicants are attached as trainees for a 6-month period and are formally employed by the company concerned. The intention is to provide real working experience in film, television and interactive projects where suitable work is available.

Screen NSW meets with the trainee and the company at the beginning of the placement to discuss the goals and expectations, and at the end of the 6 months, to discuss the outcome. 

We also check-in at the midway point, to get feedback about the trainee’s progress. 

The companies involved provide on-the-job training according to a plan agreed by the company and Screen NSW. The general framework will include: 

  • a short period of assessment; 
  • specific training on particular computer-based tools as required; 
  • allocation to a mentor or a particular project (depending on strengths and requirements); 
  • association with a project team; and
  • increasing complexity of tasks. 

Each trainee is employed on a fixed-term temporary engagement for six months. The first four weeks are a probation period, and during this time the company has the right to terminate the employment. Following successful completion of the probation period, the traineeship continues the full six months. The salary rate is agreed between the company and Screen NSW and is in line with applicable industrial awards and legislation. Usual superannuation benefits apply. The aim of the traineeship is to increase employability in the animation and digital visual effects field. However, the traineeship is not intended to lead to a formal qualification and there are no guarantees of employment after the traineeship has been completed. The company is free to re-employ the trainee at the end of the traineeship period if they wish, and if suitable work is available, on terms and conditions to be agreed by the trainee and the company. 

Who should I contact if I have any questions?

Please contact Amelia Carew-Reid, Manager, Screen Industry Development

Phone: 02 8289 6417


What happens if my application is not successful in this round?

Unsuccessful applicants will have the opportunity to get feedback from the assessment panel. Applicants who are not successful in one round are welcome to apply to subsequent rounds.

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