Ria began her career in the film industry and transitioned into 3D Animation. Before working at Lost Boys, she gained several years of experience in an educational environment, running a 3D Animation school, which focused on training for the animation and game industries.
At Lost Boys she has multiple professional roles:
Owner / Director – Oversees the school operations.
Senior Educational Administrator – Oversees the program delivery, and curriculum development and reporting to the ministry.
Student Services Administrator – Attends to students’ needs, which may include everything from selecting admissions to assistance with job placement.
Production Designer / SFX Artist – When shooting original live action footage for the students, Ria helps bring the concepts to life through set decoration, prop creation, costume design, and special effects makeup (one of her specialties). She often collaborates with shot design: from early development to final direction.
Ria and Mark spend a great deal of time developing the school and designing projects to ensure that Lost Boys is continually providing the best and most relevant VFX education possible.
Ria Bénard | Student Services Director/Senior Educational Administrator
Ria studied 3D Animation and was the previous Co-Owner, Administrator, and part-time Animation Instructor of a digital animation school for 4 years. This included curriculum design, development, and delivery for multiple classes including Motion Studies, Acting for Animators, Animation Basics, and Introduction to Cameras and Lighting in 3D.
Her responsibilities also included developing administration systems, procedures, and reporting to the Ministry of Education and Student Aid.
Her past film and theatre experience includes various positions ranging from Director, Camera Assistant, 1st and 2nd AD, Set Decoration, and Special Effects Make-up and Prosthetic Artist.
Her combined years of experience in the film industry, the education field, and administration fully equip her for all of the demands of running a visual effects school.
Professional Memberships & Industry Involvement
- Visual Effects Society (VES) – Past Board Member & Secretary – Vancouver Section
Ria was previously the secretary of the local Visual Effects Society and an education committee member. She was very involved as a board member and organized the Celebration of Animation and Visual Effects for several years. She was often the voice of the VES Vancouver section at the AGM’s. As an education committee member, Ria arranged Artist Spotlights and workshops for the Education Chair and assisted with managing Career fairs and the job board.
- Screen-Based Media Industry-Education Advisory Committee
Ria was a member of the the Screen-Based Media Industry-Education Advisory Committee and actively represents the smaller, focused private schools.