Little did Sebastian Barkoczy’s five-year-old self know that playing around with miniature models and dioramas would lead to a brilliant career designing for major festivals, motion pictures and TV shows. Yet that is the reality for Sebastian, whose increasingly impressive CV includes an interactive installation for the Vivid Sydney Festival, sculpting for Ridley Scott’s Alien Covenant 2, and working in the art department for the Australian television drama series, A Place Called Home. He also hosts two children’s TV shows for Channel 7: Get Arty and Get Clever, which teach kids creative projects in the arts and science.
“I always loved creating things and working with my hands, but that didn’t translate immediately to a career in design,” said Sebastian. “After leaving school I dabbled in construction and hospitality and travelled, but at age 24 I decided it was time to start using my brain. All of my friends were in creative industries and my Mum was an interior designer, so I thought I’d give that a go.”
After initially completing a Certificate IV in Design Fundamentals at the Enmore Design Centre through TAFE NSW - Sydney Institute, Sebastian undertook an Advanced Diploma of Live Production, Theatre and Events. It was this course that opened up the “mind blowing” opportunities that Sebastian is now experiencing.
“I couldn’t have asked for anything more industry relevant or anything that would better prepare me to hit the ground running,” said Sebastian. “My teachers were people working in the film industry and we trained in a workshop that replicated anything you’d see on a real film set. It was an awesome training experience that ensured I was highly competitive when I started looking for work.”
Sebastian was also highly competitive when it came to assessing the best and brightest vocational education and training (VET) students of the class of 2015, earning a place as a finalist in the Australian Training Awards. His career has now progressed in leaps and bounds, with Sebastian’s talents being highly sought after on a range of projects. As a proud member of the VET Alumni he is quick to credit VET for this growing success.
“VET instilled the skills, presented the opportunities, and gave me the confidence to pursue them,” he said. “This is an extremely competitive industry and not a lot is advertised, so you have to put your hand up, build networks and grab opportunities with both hands. In an environment where high pressure and insane deadlines are the norm, you need to believe you can deliver and it is thanks to VET, that I have that confidence.”
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To invite Sebastian to share his success story at your event please contact VETAlumni@education.gov.au.