James’ career began in theatre. After working widely as an assistant designer in Sydney, James was awarded the ‘Lend Lease Scholarship for Design’ and began an internship at The Bush Theatre, London, in 1998. His other UK work experience includes productions at the Gate Theatre, the Lyric Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company and Channel 4. James has worked in theatre in the UK, Europe and Australia.
In 2005, James graduated from the Australian Film, Television & Radio School (AFTRS) with a Master of Arts in Production Design and was awarded both the Fox Studios Award for Design Excellence and the Gilbert & Tobin Award for Best Body of Work. Since graduating, James has worked in the Australian film and television industry as a Production Designer and Art Director.
James has designed many award winning short films which have met with great success worldwide, these include: Splintered (Best Short Film, Slamdance 2005), Australian Summer (Best Film, Tropfest 2005), Danya (Best Film, Jackson Hole International Film Festival) and Crooked Mick, which has won multiple awards worldwide.
James also designed his award winning short film, ‘Shift‘, winning the 2014 Australian Production Design Guild (APDG) award for design on a short film.
James has also taught at Australia’s leading theatre and film schools, NIDA and AFTRS. James currently teaches screen design at NIDA where his students produce eight music video clips with Triple J Unearthed and Rage, and a short film each year.
He is a member of the Australian Production Design Guild, APDG.