Growing up in Guelph, Ontario as one of six kids, Cameron Clark found he could only truly express myself in one of two ways – snowboarding and playing video games.
After moving out to Whistler, B.C. after graduating high school to try his hand at becoming a professional snowboarder, this year’s Class of 2021 Video Game Design & Development valedictorian ultimately decided video games and programming were where his true passions lied.
“The main reason why I pursued this career choice is because every game is unique and tells a story, and that is what fascinates me about them,” Clark said, noting that he was ‘instantly attracted’ to Toronto Film School’s program the moment he stumbled upon it online.
“The rest is history – and now one of my biggest hobbies is now my career and that truly is amazing.”
Since finishing his studies at TFS, Clark has been doing gameplay and AI programming at Cat Splat Studios – a Toronto-based indie studio co-founded by Toronto Film School alumni-turned-professors Kyle Skidmore and Hisham Ata.
“Having a great industry job has rewarded me with tons of experience, new connections, and great opportunities to advance my craft to the next level,” he said, noting that he hopes to parlay those skills into starting up his own studio one day.
“I look forward to all the opportunities and challenges that will come next.”
Clark recently sat down to reflect on his time at Toronto Film School Online, his passion for video game design, and his plans for the future. Here’s what he had to say:
Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name is Cameron Clark. I’m 22 years old from Guelph, Ontario. I’m very passionate about video games (no surprise there!), outdoor activities like snowboarding and skateboarding, hanging out with friends and family, and coding!
What brought you to Toronto Film School to pursue your passion for video games? Where were you in life when you decided to continue your studies with us?
When I decided to come to TFS, I was taking a gap year after Grade 12 out in Whistler, B.C. I was working as a lift operator (lifty) running the ski lifts. I went out there mainly to relax and discover what I was passionate about. I found that I spent most of my time snowboarding, and playing video games. I had decided that I wanted my life to be encompassed by one of these activities, as they are the only two where I can truly express myself and enjoy what I’m doing. So, after the realization that I’m nowhere close to being a professional snowboarder, I decided to look into game development careers. The main reason why I pursued this career choice is because every game is unique and tells a story, and that is what fascinates me about them. After some time, I stumbled on the TFS game design and development program and instantly was attracted to it. The rest is history – and now one of my biggest hobbies is now my career and that truly is amazing!
What is the most important thing you’re taking away from your studies at TFS?
The most important thing I’m taking away from TFS is all the relationships I’ve made with teachers and my classmates. Before TFS, none of my friends were interested in game development, now I have tons of them and I even get to work with some of my past classmates. So, forging those relationships was very important to me.
What are your plans after graduation both immediate and long term?
After graduation, I started working at Cat Splat Studios doing gameplay/AI programming. In the long run, I would like to eventually open my own studio and start making awesome personal projects!
If you offered one piece of advice to an incoming student, what would that be?
A piece of advice to incoming students would be to try to make good connections with classmates and teachers. You will be working with them in the later terms as one big team, so it’s very good if your team already knows each other and you know what everyone’s strengths and weaknesses are! The capstone is a big group project that takes a lot of collaboration. It always helps when you have to collaborate with friends!