Creative maths

creative maths

We’ve got your number

Don’t yawn your way through maths class. This cool subject is making big moves in the creative world. Get amongst it!

After he finished high school, Patrick Brimmer took a gamble on his career goal. “I was good at maths, so I went for a degree with the aim of becoming a sports price trader.”

With his Bachelor of Mathematics and Finance from the University of Technology Sydney under his belt, Patrick moved into the gambling industry as a game designer for International

Gaming Technology (IGT) on their fruit machines (‘pokies’). He says pokies are basically big maths equations involving polynomials and complex formulas: “It’s a creative role where you deliver new and exciting ideas.”

Now a product marketing manager for IGT, he cites maths as the key to his career: “The smarter you are with maths in my business, the more innovative you can be when building new games.”

Maths skills are essential to creative roles in industries such as entertainment, fashion and design, and are becoming more necessary as these industries grow in the digital world.

Simulation artists and animators create visual effects in movies, TV and games, using maths to express how objects move, interact or even explode. “It’s a role based on maths, programming and artistic skills,” says Bernardo Iraci, Lead 3D Artist for Melbourne startup LithodomosVR.

LithodomosVR re-creates ancient sites in Paris, Rome and Athens for virtual reality tours. Bernardo works with an archaeological team when he’s making the 3D animations, to ensure the user experiences are historically accurate.

As new digital technologies like VR, the Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence develop, creative industries demand more maths-savvy graduates. One such company is Procept, based in Victoria, which helps people design, develop and manufacture new IoT and wearable medical device products.

“Maths skills are used at each level of the business,” says co-founder Adrian Crouch. “Any role where critical thinking and creative problem-solving are important, can benefit from the structured thinking maths gives you.”

– Ben Skuse


Check out some work and study options…


YouTube: Jie Qi

Instagram: @elonmusk

Google+: Artificial Intelligence


Machine Learning for Musicians and Artists MOOC

Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science (Advanced Mathematics) (Honours), University of New South Wales

Bachelor of Games and Interactive Environments/Bachelor of Mathematics, Queensland University of Technology


3D Animator *$65,000

AI *76,000

Design/wearables *$69,568

*median salary correct at March 2017 via


NowVR | LX Group

Biarri | Grey Innovation

Show Works Pty Ltd

Ben Skuse

Author: Ben Skuse

Ben Skuse is a UK-based former mathematician turned professional science writer, who has written for the Careers with STEM magazines for over 5 years. You can follow him on Twitter @BenSkuseSciComm.

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