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People of Ubisoft Toronto — Meet Jessica Le, Technical Artist

January 12, 2023
5 minutes read
Matt West Web Banner

Since clinching an internship as the winner of the 2021 Ubisoft Toronto NEXT competition in Technical Art, Jessica has worked on exciting projects such as The Division 2. Now, as a full time Technical Artist at Ubisoft Toronto, she shares her career journey, what the art community at Ubisoft is like, and her advice for others seeking to build a career in video games. 

Hey Jessica! What do you do as a Technical Artist and how long have you been with Ubisoft Toronto?  

As a technical artist I create tools to make an artist’s life easier, as well as help think of technical solutions to make their vision come to life. My favourite part about my role is how much there is to learn. Tech is always evolving, and I find it exciting to learn new skills and discover new ways of doing things. I’ve been with Ubisoft Toronto for over a year and can’t wait to make more memories and experiences! 

CAREER DEVELOPMENT

What did you do before working at Ubisoft Toronto? How did you break into the video game industry?

Before I worked at Ubisoft Toronto, I was a student at Ontario Tech’s Game Development program and worked retail jobs while in school. I officially “broke” into the games industry by participating in Ubisoft’s NEXT competition in 2021 and I am very thankful to have won an internship at Ubisoft from it and the rest is history!

 

Interested in kickstarting your career with a paid internship at our studio? Learn more at Ubisoft Toronto NEXT! 

What are some tips you’d give to someone hoping to land a similar role to yours?

Since I landed my current position through Ubisoft NEXT I will give some tips to future Ubisoft NEXT participants.  

First to DO it, whether you “win” or not! I learned so much throughout the entire process when it comes to developing, and it makes a good portfolio piece! Even with the project “done” I look back at it and see so many things I would go back and improve on. Even though I’m no longer eligible for the contest, I still look at the prompts for the competition and use them as prompts for my own side projects. 

Second is to talk to people! Whether that be classmates or people in the industry through LinkedIn. I don’t know why I had the impression that I was “bothering” people when I wanted to ask for advice or help with a problem, but I have yet to be turned down. And by doing that I’ve met a bunch of awesome people and have learned so much!

What’s some of the key tech/tools you use regularly in your role and how does it impact your work? 

A lot of the day to day work I do is in Python, and before Ubisoft, I knew little to none. Now I cannot imagine my life without knowing it. I never realized how MUCH you could do using Python. From modifying production tools such as ShotGrid to making tools in Maya and Houdini, it can do it all! For someone who is new to coding, I would recommend Python as a good first language to learn. 

As a technical artist I create tools to make an artist’s life easier, as well as help think of technical solutions to make their vision come to life. My favourite part about my role is how much there is to learn. Tech is always evolving, and I find it exciting to learn new skills and discover new ways of doing things. I’ve been with Ubisoft Toronto for over a year and can’t wait to make more memories and experiences!

Jessica Le Cafe Headshot For Wp

 LIFE AT UBISOFT TORONTO 

What drew you to Ubisoft Toronto?  

What drew me to Ubisoft Toronto are two things. The studio culture and all the talent here. And I was not disappointed! Everyone here is so welcoming, always rooting for you to succeed, and willing to teach and share their experiences. When I started as someone new to the gaming industry, I was so appreciative of this. Despite the studio offering hybrid work, I’m glad there are still studio events to keep the studio culture alive. 

How has hybrid & flexible work impacted your work/team’s experience? 

Since I started at Ubisoft during a time that Ubisoft was entirely work from home, I didn’t get to experience the studio with everyone in the office all at once. Although I do wish I got to experience that I am so thankful to be able to have the flexibility to have hybrid work. I’m able to choose to work in the office when I get stir crazy at home and be able to have some social interaction with other coworkers in the office. My team and Ubisoft have put a lot of effort into organizing events, so I get those opportunities to meet my co-workers in person too. I’m also able to work from home which has helped better my work-life balance immensely and that is invaluable.   

The Division 2 Season 8 Re Run Keener's Legacy

What’s your favourite project that you’ve worked on? 

The Division 2: Warlords of New York expansion was my very first project at Ubisoft (and my first game credit), which makes it my all-time favourite! I worked on the re-run of Keener’s Legacy. As I was fairly new to Cinematics, I learned so much through the whole process. I got to (virtually) meet a lot of my colleagues for the first time, I got my first run through of a cinematics pipeline, and I learned to code in Python, which is very useful for being able to create a variety of development tools. I couldn’t be more grateful for my first kick of the can at a development cycle here at Ubisoft. 

Jessica Le Hiking And Dog

PERSONAL

Tell us a bit about yourself, what do you do to relax?  

I love being outside. I think since I’m mostly at a computer at work, I try to spend as much of my my free time outside or doing something active as possible. Activities such as golfing (very poorly), going to the gym, hiking and dog walks!  

Oh, and since you work at Ubisoft, If life were a video game, what cheat code would you want?  

Definitely teleporting! Even in my everyday life I always wish I could teleport to places I need to be. 

———

People of Ubisoft Toronto is a series featuring studio members from a variety of projects and backgrounds as they share their experiences at our studio, perspective of the video game industry and, perhaps, even a sneak peek of what they’re working on! 😉 

Our studio values diversity and believes in embracing differences to build stronger and more creative teams. We welcome people who would like to join us and redefine the future of games. Visit our careers page for more information on open roles and how to apply.  To know more about our studio members and culture, click here.  

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