Member Profile: Amanda Jayapurna

1. What do you do, and how long have you been doing it?

I am currently still in school! I am a junior at the Savannah College of Art and Design, where I study Visual Effects. This summer, I am thrilled to have been able to complete a virtual Technical Direction mentorship with Pixar Animation Studios.

2. What was your first job?

When I was 16 I did an architecture work experience program at a design firm that created museums and learning spaces in Thailand. I can happily say I learnt that I did not want to pursue an architecture career after that—but when by chance I was asked to create drawings for an animated sequence, I found that to be so much more exciting which ultimately sparked my interest towards going into the animation industry.

3. Where did you complete your formal education?

I will be graduating from SCAD, Savannah in May 2022.

4. How did you first get involved with ACM SIGGRAPH?

I first started as a Student Volunteer in Los Angeles 2019 after hearing mentions of the conference at variousalumni and industry talks during my freshman year of college. I then decided to attend a SCAD SIGGRAPH Club meeting that encouraged us all to apply as SVs, and now I am the President of the official SCAD SIGGRAPH Chapter!

5. What is your favorite memory of a SIGGRAPH conference?

All of it. I flew into LA alone last year, knowing absolutely nobody at the conference and having no idea what to expect. Flash forward to the last night of the conference, I was singing my heart out at karaoke with a bunch of new friends I had met, and I remember thinking how lucky I was to be able to find such a great community of like minded people.

6. Describe a project that you would like to share with the ACM SIGGRAPH community.

I’m currently co-directing a student animated short film titledKaghati (English: The Kitemaker).It is based around Indonesian cultural themes very close to my heart, because I grew up always wishing for greater Southeast Asian representation in mainstream media. Our project started with a small group of friends wanting to make something cool together to learn more about pipeline management and honing in on collaborative skills, and with production being entirely remote, it has definitely been an exciting challenge!

7. If you could have dinner with one living or non-living person, who would it be and why?

My great-grandparents. I have never met either of them and know little about their lives, but they migrated from China to Indonesia in their early adulthood and faced a lot of racial oppression within their community. My life has been infinitely more globalized in comparison, and I would love to be able to hear their stories, experiences and even ask for some homemade recipes :)

8. What is something most people don’t know about you?

I grew up as a third culture kid living in several different countries, and I really loved volunteering at local communities—at one point I was an art teacher at a small Buddhist temple for young novice monks in Bangkok!

9. From which single individual have you learned the most in your life? What did they teach you?

I couldn’t possibly pick a single individual, but definitely all my closest friends in my life. Our many conversations have taught me to really open up, communicate thoughts clearly and understand myself a lot better as a growing, changing human being.

10. Is there someone in particular who has influenced your decision to work with ACM SIGGRAPH?

All the Team Leaders at last year’s conference. The idea of it was really intimidating to me but they were all very encouraging during my shifts and pushed me to apply.

11. What can you point to in your career as your proudest moment?

I think I’m a little too early in my career to answer this definitively, but for the time being, It would be every time I complete a project and am able to share them with family, friends and people around me. The computer graphics industry is a crazy, fast-paced, and innovative one and I am always proud to be able to show how much I’ve learnt and improved with every new challenge.