In honour of the Champlain Saint-Lambert’s 50th anniversary, the college has followed up with 50 of its alumni to see where their paths have led after their time in Cegep. These 50 former students have gone on to accomplish amazing things and their paths show just how much is possible for a Champlain grad.
This Creative Arts grad took her passion for filmmaking straight to Hollywood.
Jade Healy (Creative Arts, 2000) is a Los Angeles based production designer who worked on major films such as I, Tonya (2017), The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2017), A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019), Marriage Story (2019) and The Green Knight (2021), among many others.
Healy said she first discovered her love of film while studying in Creative Arts at Champlain. Little did she know then that her career would take her to the epicentre of American film: Hollywood.
Healy started her studies at Champlain with photography as her main concentration. However, when she took an elective film class with longtime teacher Dan Babineau, something clicked into place.
“I remember being completely enamored by the moving image,” she said. “I loved movies but I hadn’t really thought about working in film.”
Healy added that living outside Quebec, she has a greater appreciation for the value of the Cegep system, saying that the two years between high school and university gave her time to really figure out what she wanted to do.
“Had I not gone to Champlain and been able to do Creative Arts, I would not have discovered this passion.”
After Cegep, Healy completed a BA in Communication Studies at Concordia where she was able to secure a for-credit internship working in film in Los Angeles.
“If you do your homework and look into it, you’ll find there’s a lot of people who will take free labour,” she said.
It was working on the set of the 2006 film Lying where Healy was first exposed to the world of production design.
She started working in the art department, doing props and learning the trade.
“If you have a good aesthetic and a good eye, you can do a lot,” Healy said.
I’m not the best production designer. I’m very good in person and I’m good at understanding what a director wants. That’s my gift as a designer.”
Healy was also recently nominated for an Art Directors Guild award for The Green Knight (2021) in the most competitive category: Fantasy.
Healy has also racked up credits producing, writing and directing.
She’s directing and writing a project with funding from the Canadian Council of the Arts and working on a documentary she shot about a cross-country father-daughter road trip.
“My love was always filmmaking. When I think about design, I think about storytelling. I’m thinking about how I would shoot it, it’s a very natural transition for me,” she said.
Healy’s advice for current students and recent grads: “Just follow your heart, follow your passion and dream. Start with ‘I can’ and not ‘I can’t.’”