10th October 2022

‘Milk Mondays’ – Featuring Lighting/Lookdev TD, Mark Ardisson

Jenny Burbage
Posted 10th October 2022

Welcome back to Milk Mondays…

Where we get to show off our lovely lot and share a little bit of their wisdom, what makes them tick and what they get up to when they’re not making VFX ?

Read on to find out more!


How long have you been working at milk? 

I’ve been working at Milk for around 6 months already, how time flies!


What do you like about working here? 

What I like most about working here is definitely the people. Milk has succeeded in attracting a hive of hard-working, talented, and positive artists with a great sense of humour. Which says a lot about the company. It feels really good to know that you can be your best artistic self thanks to being surrounded by inspiring colleagues everyday.


Did you always want to be a Lighting/Lookdev TD?

Actually not really. When I started out in VFX, I was trained as a CG Generalist specialising in 3D Modelling. I was focused on following the modeller/sculptor path until I grew as an artist and discovered the wonderful world of lighting and look development!


How did you get into Lighting/Lookdev?

I am self-taught and was very fortunate to land an internship at Blinkink, an animation studio in North London. They make great commercials and music videos. I used to go there twice a week for 6 months to watch tutorials and practice all day whilst working in retail at the same time to pay the bills. After those 6 months, they deemed I was good enough to be offered a Junior CG Generalist role and I started helping out on various projects by modelling assets, doing a bit of texturing and lighting. I learned on the job from my colleagues and was guided by a very talented Head of CG who used to be one of the OG Lead Lighting Artists at Framestore.

After my time at Blinkink, I did a lot of freelance work as a CG Generalist (modelling/texturing and occasionally lighting) in various London animation studios (Passion, Nexus, Prodigious..) and ended up as a full-time Lighting Artist at Framestore. That’s when I knew Lighting and Lookdev was what I wanted to focus on.


Do you have a favourite kind of Lighting/Lookdev work? (why?)  and what’s the best bit of your job?

That’s a difficult question to answer haha. Lighting-wise I’m really into realistic character lighting for CG integration. I like to trick the viewer’s eye and make things look as believable as possible. But I also love most things stylised and ‘fantastique’ as there’s a lot of room for making things look surreal and pretty! Which is a Lighting/Lookdev artist dream. 

Best bit of the job is to see the final result on a big screen in the cinema or on TV. It’s so rewarding.


What’s been the most exciting project you’ve worked on in the last year?

I had the opportunity to work on a new Marvel tv series called ‘Moon Knight’ 

That was a lot of fun.


Your favourite project at Milk and why?

Since I joined Milk I’ve worked on Fate: The WINX saga for Netflix – a very fantastical and creative project to work on. The team has been absolutely amazing and I’m really proud of what we accomplished in such a short amount of time. I feel very fortunate to have worked with such a team on my first show at Milk. And I’m now on Good Omens 2 which is just incredible.. I can’t say any more!

Can’t wait to see what’s next!


What does your typical day look like? 

Early morning rise, gym, breakfast, LOTS of coffee, work, then depending on the day I like to paint/draw and play music or meet friends after work in a restaurant and/or pub.


Your top 3 key ingredient/s for creating amazing work?

Patience, communication, attention to detail.


What do you love about working in VFX? 

I love the fact that you learn from absolutely everyone, and artistic growth is a never ending journey. 


What’s the secret of your success? 

Hard work, positivity and endless curiosity.


What do you like doing when you’re not lighting/lookdeving?

I like drawing using different mediums such as graphite, charcoal as well as digital. 


Tell us something that might surprise us about you?

I’m a musician and have played venues/festivals around the globe 🙂

And just for fun..

What’s the one thing you always keep on your desk?

I like to have this book called ‘Anatomy for Sculptors’ on my desk. It helps a lot to have a solid reference when drawing or digitally sculpting for fun.



Not at the moment unfortunately but I am the go to cat-sitter for all my friends so I get to spend time with cats (my favourites) quite often.


Last present you bought yourself?

A second hand Sony ZV-1


What would be your superpower?



What are you learning at the moment?

I’ve been learning drawing and painting for about a year now. I’d like to get really good at it and hopefully do it professionally at some point in the future. Alberto Mielgo and Mark Maggiori are a huge source of inspiration.


Bonus question

Tea or coffee ?  one sugar or two? 

Coffee, strong, black, no sugar.

Awright Guv’nah

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