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Graduate Nora Twomey on her Oscar nominations and her new Netflix film starring Gatan Matarazzo

Past student Nora Twomey (pictured with Gateen Matarazzo), talks about her new Netflix film, her Oscar nominations and how her time in CSN, Tramore Road Campus ignited her career in animation

CSN Tramore Road Campus Past Student, Nora Twomey talks about how her start studying Art in CSN-Tramore Road Campus propelled her high-flying Animation Career

CSN Tramore Road Campus Past Student, Nora Twomey talkss about how herstart in the college propelled her high-flying Animation Career

"She left school early and took on factory work - but a return to education in her 20s helped fire up Nora Twomey’s creative imagination. It was, the East Cork-born animator recalls now, a massive turning point in her life.

Taking on the foundation course in a well-known Cork college made her realise that a world of other career paths were possible. The Oscar-nominated filmmaker and co-founder of top animation studio Cartoon Saloon still vividly remembers that time.

“I was 22 when I went back to Coláiste Stiofáin Naofa on Tramore Road in Cork,” she recalls. “That's where I did a foundation course - I got to do some ceramics, some fine art painting, all of these different disciplines just to try them out and see which suited me.
“That’s where I began to understand that you could make a living from animation and that there were so many different careers open to anybody who just wanted to use their hands.”

It helped, she adds, that not only were the staff encouraging - but also that she got to meet people from all ages and walks of life.

“That was a massive turning point, because not only were the tutors really supportive of the students, but the students themselves - there were mature students, there were retired people and there were 17 year olds, all in one classroom and tackling artwork from whatever their skill level was.

For me, it was a massive eye opener. “And that energy - I remember going home on the bus, from Cork city back down to Midleton after the first weekend, just full of excitement. I'll never forget that sense of the adrenaline rush that I got from thinking: ‘Oh my gosh, there's a whole world out there of creativity that I didn't even know was there. Even all these years later, nearly 30 years later, I still never forget that feeling of: ‘I'd found my way’.""

Read more about Nora's story here on the Irish Examiner