Friday, December 31, 2010

Tim Burton Opens Up About His Design Process

Master of the macabre, Director/Designer Tim Burton reveals his process to David L. Ulin of the Los Angeles Times in his article posted Dec. 31, 2010 7:56 a.m.

From his humble beginnings in animation, Tim Burton was always drawing.   Burton was born in Burbank, raised on TV and the films of Ray Harryhausen, educated at the California Institute of the Arts.

Since that time, the Director has created a unique and sometimes bizarre catalog of cinema tied together with white and black striped thread.  It all has culminated in "The Art of Tim Burton."

Ring In the New Year with Kung Fu Panda: TV Spot

Read a full Article posted on December 31, 2010 by Alex Billington

Paramount brings DreamWorks Kung Fu Panda 2 to theaters everywhere
in 3D starting May 26, next summer.

Learn How to Protect Your Work!

Saturday, January 8, 2011
Ask the Experts: One on One with a Lawyer 
9 a.m. - 1 p.m. (by appointment)
Arts Incubator, 115 W. 18th St., Kansas City, MO

The lawyer is in!  Make an appointment to sit down with a lawyer and discuss your arts-related legal issue for thirty minutes.  Attorneys can assist with general questions related to contracts, copyrights, business formation, employment issues, and more.  You must make an appointment to attend!  To make an appointment, email, with the subject line "Ask the Experts."  In your email, please give us a general idea of the type of issue or question you want to discuss (so we know what kind of lawyer to match you up with).

Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

                Don't miss our other upcoming ArtSmarts presentations!                       

Please pre-register for classes by emailing your name, phone number, and address to

Type the class title in the subject line. Classes are $10 for non-members and free for members.  Cash & Check only! 

Thursday, January 20, 2011
The Art of the Contract & Licensing
6 - 8 p.m.
Presented in cooperation with the Kaw Valley Arts & Humanities, Inc., 756 Armstrong, Kansas City, KS 66101

Contracts are the cornerstone of any business, but for artists, much of the information comes in the form of anecdotes from other artists or from the internet (not the most reliable source!).  In this seminar you will learn the general principles of contract formation, drafting and negotiation, including:
Does it have to be in writing?
What's fair?
What language has to be in there to protect me?
What if the deal goes sour?
How do I negotiate a contract?
Many of these same principles will be address regarding licensing agreements as well. 

Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

Tuesday,February 1, 2011
Non-Profit Formation Workshop
6 - 8 p.m.
Arts Incubator, 115 W. 18th St., Kansas City, MO 64108

This workshop is for artists and arts groups who want to form non-profit organizations, and who have worked through the KCVLAA's non-profit formation workbook.  In this workshop, you'll learn the filing, reporting and administrative requirements for arts non-profits, as well as strategies for preparing an effective Form 1023.  Don't have a KCVLAA Non-Profit Formation Workbook yet?  Email and ask for one.   

Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Sales Tax & Small Business Taxation for Artists
6 - 8 p.m.
Arts Incubator, 115 W. 18th St., Kansas City, MO 64108

 If you plan to make your art a business (even if you sell artwork through a gallery), tax issues surround everything you do.  In this seminar, you'll learn the basics requirements for reporting sales tax in Kansas & Missouri, and learn some basics for reporting the income from your arts business to taxing authorities.

Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

Thursday, March 24, 2011
What Everyone Needs to Know About Copyrights
6 - 8 p.m.
Presented in cooperation with the Kaw Valley Arts & Humanities, Inc., 756 Armstrong, Kansas City, KS 66101

 Learn the basics of copyright law: who owns what, how much you can use of someone else's work, what's really "fair" about "fair use," what happens when you sell a piece, and how to avoid disputes!  Myths will be debunked and famous artists' infringements analyzed.   

Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

Tuesday, April 12, 2011
What Everyone Needs to Know About Copyrights
6 - 8 p.m.
Arts Incubator, 115 W. 18th St., Kansas City, MO 64108

 Learn the basics of copyright law: who owns what, how much you can use of someone else's work, what's really "fair" about "fair use," what happens when you sell a piece, and how to avoid disputes!  Myths will be debunked and famous artists' infringements analyzed.   

 Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

Thursday May 12, 2011
Accounting for Non Accountants
6 - 8 p.m.
Presented in cooperation with the Kaw Valley Arts & Humanities, Inc., 756 Armstrong, Kansas City, KS 66101

So many artists and arts organizations get themselves into trouble because they do not know how to take care of their bookkeeping needs on their own and are afraid that they cannot afford professional help.  Join us to find out some bookkeeping basics to help keep you out of trouble.

Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

Tuesday, May 17, 2011
The Art of the Contract & Business Formation
6 - 8 p.m.
Arts Incubator, 115 W. 18th St., Kansas City, MO 64108

Contracts are the cornerstone of any business, but for artists, much of the information comes in the form of anecdotes from other artists or from the internet (not the most reliable source!).  In this seminar you will learn the general principles of contract formation, drafting and negotiation, including:
Does it have to be in writing?
What's fair?
What language has to be in there to protect me?
What if the deal goes sour?
How do I negotiate a contract?
Also learn the ins and outs of business formation.  You will learn what limited liability is, why you should want it and how you can get it.  There will be a discussion of different business entities and what types of entity may be right for you. 

Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

Thursday, June 30, 2011
The Ethics of Representing Artists
6 - 8 p.m.
Arts Incubator, 115 W. 18th St., Kansas City, MO 64108

Come learn the ethical implications of representing artists with this two hour continuing legal education ethics seminar. 

Please pre-register by putting the presentation title in the subject line of an email, all of your contact information in the body and email to

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Time to Start Submitting for SIGGRAPH 2011 in Vancouver

Submission Deadline:
15 April 2011
22:00 UTC/GMT

In 2011, SIGGRAPH’s Computer Animation Festival celebrates its 38th year as the world's most innovative exploration of computer-generated animation and visual effects. This four-day, international event presents an eclectic array of computer animation genres and styles ranging from narrative character animation to scientific visualization.

We would like to see ANY and ALL work from the world of animation. (for example, stop motion, scientific visualization, traditional animation, among others.) All entries must be uploaded by 15 April 2011 (22:00 UTC/GMT). Only finished works will be considered for inclusion, and all submissions must be uploaded at final resolution.

Sbmission Categories:
The festival accepts submissions in 11 distinct categories:
1. Computer Animation Shorts
All forms of animated short pieces that contain a significant percentage of computer-generated imagery and/or digital production and are not specifically suited to one of the other nine submission categories. This includes independent shorts, character animation, sponsored creative explorations, narrative and experimental works, opening sequences, game cinematics, selections and/or montages of animated television series, machinima, and new-media formats. Shorts of any length may be submitted, but the Computer Animation Festival reserves the right to show only excerpts of selected works at the jury’s discretion.

2.Music Videos
Commissioned and/or independent works that use any combination of computer animation, digital effects, and live action to illustrate, enhance, and/or complement a musical creation.

3. TV and Web Commercials
Advertisements created entirely or partially with computer animation and/or digital effects. Also promotional spots, broadcast bumpers and graphics, and public service announcements.

4. Visualizations and Simulations
Computer animations created to explain, analyze, or visualize information for applications including scientific research, architecture, engineering, systems simulations, education, and documentary projects.

5. Student Projects
Computer-animated works of all kinds produced to satisfy a school, coursework, and/or graduation requirement. Entries in this category qualify for Best Student Project Award consideration. The Computer Animation Festival requests that all student works be submitted under this category, regardless of genre.

6. Animated Feature Films
Selections and/or montages of computer animation created for animated feature films.

7. Visual Effects for Short Films and TV Programs
Selections and/or montages of visual effects created for short live-action films and/or for television programs.

8. Visual Effects for Live-Action Feature Films
Selections and/or montages of visual effects created for live-action feature films.

9. Real-Time Animation
Game, web, and mobile animations that are rendered in the same amount of time that it takes to play them back. Real-time technology demos are also encouraged! Real-time technology demos should be submitted to Real-Time Live!

10. Miscellaneous
Computer animations that do not fit in any of the above categories, including technology showcases, previz, and other cool stuff that hasn't been invented yet.

11.Traditional and Stop Motion
Animation that takes us back to our roots. Without traditional and stop motion animation, we wouldn’t be doing what we’re doing today!

The Computer Animation Festival reserves the right to place entries in the category that is most appropriate. Stereo 3D work will be considered and can be entered in any of the above categories.

Competition Entries and Invited Entries
The festival includes a Competition Section and an Invited Section. Entries submitted in any of the 11 categories above automatically participate in the Competition Section and are eligible for the corresponding Computer Animation Festival awards and recognitions. The Invited Section consists of special projects invited by the festival committee. The complete list of Competition and Invited Entries will be available on 1 June 2011.

On the first night of the festival, the Festival Jury will present the Best in Show Award, Jury Award, and Best Student Project Prize. The Best in Show Award qualifies the winner to be considered for nomination in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Best Animated Short Film category. An Audience Award will be announced on the last day of the conference.

Award Eligibility
All films screened in the Computer Animation Festival’s Competition Section are eligible for the Best in Show, Jury, and Audience Awards. Only those works in the Student Projects section are eligible for Best Student Project recognition. Pieces selected for the Invited Section are not eligible for awards.

The festival will showcase jury-selected entries alongside invited works in a single program, in the tradition of SIGGRAPH's original Electronic Theater. In addition, a few thematic and monographic screenings of both juried and curated material complement the Competition Section. For the third year in a row, selected screenings will be open to the general public in addition to conference and festival attendees.

Talks and Panels
The Computer Animation Festival includes presentations by experts on a variety of topics related to creation of computer animation and visual effects, as well as behind-the-scenes presentations by the creators whose works are screened at the festival. You are encouraged to submit a proposal for a Talk (single presenter) or a Panel (multiple presenters) about your project and/or additional relevant topics.

How to SubmitEvaluationUpon AcceptanceTimeline
To qualify for the SIGGRAPH 2011 Computer Animation Festival Competition Section, each submission must:
  • Be a complete, finished work.
  • Have been completed after January 2010.
  • Include a significant percentage or inventive use of computer-generated imagery and/or digital production.
  • Be uploaded at final resolution at time of entry.
  • Be submitted in the appropriate category. (Student works must be entered in the Student Projects category.
The Computer Animation Festival reserves the right to place submissions in a different category if deemed appropriate by the festival committee and/or jury. Shorts of any length may be submitted, but the Computer Animation Festival reserves the right to show only excerpts of selected works at the jury’s discretion. SIGGRAPH 2011 Computer Animation Festival policy requires that the total time for end titles and credits together is no longer than seven seconds.

To enter your work in the Computer Animation Festival:
1. Complete the SIGGRAPH 2011 Computer Animation Festival Films online submission form (one form per entry) by 15 April 2011, 22:00 UTC/GMT. You may edit or correct the information included with your form as many times as needed before the submission deadline. Each entry will be assigned a Submission ID number by the online submission system. Submitters must complete the Submission and Authorization Agreement by the 15 April deadline for the entry to be considered. You are encouraged to review the Agreement before beginning your submission. Important: All descriptions, captions, and notes to the jury must be in English. If your first language is not English and you need some help, please consider the English Review Service.

2. Upload three representative still images from the submitted work. At least one of the images must be at 1K pixel resolution or higher. Ideally, all three images will meet this criterion. JPGs saved at the highest quality possible are preferred.

3. Upload a movie file for the jury to evaluate your work. You must upload your project only once, and at final resolution. High-definition submissions are strongly encouraged.

Submission spec guidelines are: Each submission must include a slate with the following information:
  • HD Slate
  • SD Slate

  • Project title (must match project title on submission form)

  • Frame rate

  • Pixel resolution

  • Compression codec

  • Duration from first frame to last frame (minutes:seconds:frames)

  • Audio configuration (Stereo, 5.1)
  • The above information should be presented in the following order: five seconds slate, five seconds black, two seconds before the first frame of the work there should be an audio and visual 2-pop cue. Computer Animation Festival High-Definition (HD) Submission Format Basic Submission Guidelines
Accepted Video Codecs:
  • DNxHD
  • H.264 (must provide bit rate)
Accepted Video Resolutions:
  • 1080p (1920x1080p) Preferred
  • 1080i (1920x1080i)
  • 720p (1280x720p)
  • Both pillar boxing and letter boxing are OK
Accepted Frame Rate:

  • 23.98 fps
  • 24 fps
  • 29.97 fps
  • 30 fps
 Audio Rate: 48 kHz

Advanced HD Submission Guidelines
Accepted Audio Compressions
5.1 (MUST ALSO INCLUDE a stereo L-R downmix)
The channel assignment for clips with 5.1 should be as follows:

1 -- left

2 -- right

3 -- center

4 -- LFE

   5 -- left surround

6 -- right surround

   7 -- left stereo mix

8 -- right stereo mix

Stereo, with labeled channels

Format should be 10-bit linear PCM or 16-bit PCM for each channel. 

Accepted Color Space: 
Rec 709
If you are unable to provide an HD file, please submit your standard-definition project as follows:
Computer Animation Festival Standard-Definition (SD) Submission Format Basic Submission Guidelines Accepted Video Codec:

  1. H.264 (Must provide bit rate)

  2. MJPEG
Accepted Video Resolutions:
NTSC submissions:
640x480 or 720x540 SQUARE PIXELS

PAL submissions:
720x540 or 768x576 SQUARE PIXELS
Both pillar boxing and letter boxing are OK

Accepted Frame Rate:
59.94i (NTSC and PAL)
50i (NTSC and PAL) Audio Rate: 48.000 kHz

Advanced SD Submission Guidelines
Accepted Audio Compressions:
5.1 (MUST ALSO INCLUDE a stereo L-R downmix)
The channel assignment for clips with 5.1 should be as follows:

1 -- left

2 -- right

3 -- center

4 -- LFE

5 -- left surround

6 -- right surround

  7 -- left stereo mix

  8 -- right stereo mix
Stereo, with labeled channels

Format should be 10-bit linear PCM for each channel.

Accepted Color Space: Rec 601

Computer Animation Festival Stereo 3D Technical RequirementsStereo 3D clips must conform to the following specs:
Resolution: Current screen size and Cinema server will accommodate up to 2048x01080 DCP raster sizes. Acceptable mattes include 1.78 matte (1920x1080), 1.85 matte (1998x1080), or 2.35 (2048x858) DCP matte.

Frame rate: 24.00 or 48.00 FPS ONLY

File format: JPEG2000 DCP or sequence files for 3D only. If you are unable to create a Stereo 3D DCP, please see below for sequence file submissions.

Unencrypted preferred. If encrypted is necessary, please contact the Computer Animation Festival Technical Director for server serials and time ranges.

Sound: Either 5.1 or A Stereo L-R downmix with labeled channels is required. The channel assignment for clips with 5.1 should be:

1 -- left

2 -- right

3 -- center

  4 -- LFE

5 -- left surround

6 -- right surround

1 -- left stereo mix

2 -- right stereo mix

Audio Rate: 48 kHz, and sound format should be 10-bit linear PCM for each channel. Framerate MUST BE 24 or 48 FPS.

Alternative Stereo 3D Format: Sequence File Submissions

Required for each set of eyes: 1920x1080 (1.78), 1998x1080 (1.85), 2048x858 (2.40) sequence files


Label each folder clearly with the eye it contains.

Include a separate folder of discreet audio channels that match the duration of your sequence files.

Accepted Color Space: REC-709 (64-940 range) preferred. If you submit in another color space, please let us know what you are giving us.

Uploading Files

If you have problems uploading your files to the SIGGRAPH 2010 online submission system, the cause could be that your server is behind a "firewall", subject to a system that is proxying https connections. Please ask your IT department if they can disable the https proxy so you can complete your submission. If you have any questions about uploading files, please review the Computer Animation Festival Frequently Asked Questions. If you do not find the answer to your question there, feel free to contact the Computer Animation Festival Technical Director. We will be happy to help.

Non-native English speakers may use the English Review Service to help improve the text of submissions. Please note that this process takes time, so plan far ahead.

All submitters must complete the Submission and Authorization Agreement (formerly the Acceptance Agreement) before the submission deadline. Incomplete submissions will not be reviewed or accepted.

Adobe Photoshop CS5 Power Tour in OK

Adobe Photoshop CS5 Power Tour
with Dave Cross
Oklahoma City, OK
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
10:00am - 5:00pm
Cox Business Services Convention Center, 9-12


Visit for more details.

Photoshop experts and best-selling authors, Dave Cross and Corey Barker have created THE must-see Adobe Photoshop CS5 tour of 2011! Join two of the planet’s most renowned Photoshop gurus for the hottest, most-requested, jaw-dropping Photoshop effects tour of 2011! Learn the tips and tricks of the pros that will dramatically boost your creativity, productivity and Photoshop skills.

This one-of-a-kind seminar tour will teach you the insider secrets, “how-to’s”, and pro techniques of the world’s leading designers, photographers, and creative design masters. You’ll also learn how to take full advantage of Photoshop CS5, including its most powerful tools and features. This seminar is guaranteed to take your skills to the next level. You’ll be amazed at how much you can learn in just one day!

Tornado Alley 5

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Kansas Needs More Support for Arts



Funding for Kansas arts organizations, arts programs and arts education is being drastically diminished.

Now is the time for everyone who care about the arts to become active and voice their support for the arts. Together, all of us must advocate for increased support of the arts in our state in the coming year!Take action now!


As we approach the new legislative session, tell legislators and the new administration how important the Kansas Arts Commission is to you and your organization.

Perhaps you or your organization has received grants from the Kansas Arts Commission. Perhaps you've been honored with an award or fellowship. Perhaps you've attended workshops or meetings or have had a staff member visit with you or your board -- and you've found them helpful and informative. Legislators want to know that!

Send a letter telling your state representative, state senator and the new governor about the value the Kansas Arts Commission brings. Write your own or use ideas from the example provided.


Kansas Citizens for the Arts has named Sarah Carkhuff Fizell, Topeka, as its new executive coordinator. As a public relations and government affairs consultant, Sarah works with a variety of clients on behalf of Strategic Communications of Kansas.

“I am pleased to be working with Kansas Citizens for the Arts and look forward to broadening their membership and advocacy activities across Kansas,” said Fizell.

“We feel so fortunate to have Sarah working with us as she brings a wide variety of governmental, public relations, as well as administrative experiences to this new position with the Citizens,” stated Ann Evans, co-chair of Kansas Citizens for the Arts.

Her Kansas Citizens for the Arts responsibilities include building membership of individuals and organizations, developing statewide community outreach and networking, working to develop a unified legislative agenda in conjunction with the Kansas Arts Commission and organizing advocacy efforts. She will coordinate the annual

Arts Day at the Capitol, work with the board of directors, as well as manage the operations of the organization.

To contact Sarah, email her at


The Kansas Citizens for the Arts invites arts organizations leaders — staff and board members — arts audiences, arts educators — and everyone who cares about the arts in Kansas — to attend its free arts advocacy workshop:

Wednesday, January 12, 2011 at 6:00 pm
Leawood Branch Library
4700 Town Center Drive (Leawood)
A light meal and drinks will be provided.

This workshop, led by KCA Executive Coordinator Sarah Carkhuff Fizell, will help you become an expert in developing a message for local arts advocacy. To RSVP, send an email to or call 913-894-2720.

Adobe & Motorola Video Contest

Adobe & Motorola : Barcelona GSMA : Video Contest

Motorola and Adobe are seeking original, inventive ideas to convey the exciting possibilities made possible with full web browsing on new mobile devices like the DROID smartphones by Motorola with Adobe® Flash® Player.


Submission Deadline:
Jan 31 2011, 12:00 noon GMT

There are two contests available with different briefs - one for an Ad and another for a Short-film. So get your creative juices working and get filming. You can enter both contests with as many different videos as you like. Just read each brief and follow it carefully for your chance to win great prizes from Adobe and Motorola. Download both briefs if you intend to enter both contests.

Prizes Include
  • Trips to Barcelona to join Adobe, Motorola and MOFILM at their famous filmmaker awards
  • Adobe® Creative Suite® 5 Master Collection software bundles
  • Motorola Devices
Also, check out the PepsiFilms Short Film Contest:
US$5,000 in Cash Prizes (total)

Tornado Alley 4

Monday, December 20, 2010

Extended Addy Deadline This Wednesday!

Did you forget to enter the Addy's last week?  Did you remember one more piece of terrific work you want to enter?  Whatever your excuse, you can still submit entries this week, but the absolute deadline is this Wednesday, December 22 by 6pm.  (Plus you'll need to pay a late fee of $15 per entry.)

Details for entering can be found online at:

Entry Drop Off:
Professional Entries should be dropped off at the AAF-KC Office between 8:00am and 6:00pm on December 22nd (If you would like to bring your submissions today or tomorrow, please contact to make an appointment.)

Student Entries:
Student entries aren't due until January 15. You should drop off entries at the AAF-KC Office on Saturday, January 15 between 8:00am-3:00pm. (If you would like to bring your submissions in prior to January 15th please contact to make arrangements.)

The AAF-KC office is located at:
1025 Jefferson Street
Kansas City, MO.  64105
(816) 822-0300

Interested in Sponsoring?

Opportunities are still available for the 2010 ADDY show!

Contact Christopher O'Connor, AAF-KC Sponsorship Chair, Special V.I.P. benefits will be given to our sponsors.

New year.  New show.  New rules.

We'll see you at the Midland Theatre, Saturday, February 19, 2011 

American Advertising Federation - Kansas City
1025 Jefferson, Kansas City, MO, 64105 USA

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Animation and VFX Reign Once Again at the Box Office

Image courtesy Walt Disney Pictures, 2010

Disney's long anticipated sequel of the 1982 sleeper hit ‘Tron’ took the top spot at this weekend’s box office.  "Tron: Legacy" took in an estimated $43.6 million on its opening weekend.

Second place went to that loveable, picnic basket thief "Yogi Bear.”  The Warner Bros. animated film had a rather disappointing debut, earning only $16.7 million.

Last week's box office headliner, "The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader," came in third with $12.4 million.  The third installment based on the classic novels by C. S. Lewis has brought in $42.7 million since its opening.

Here are the rest of the weekend numbers estimated by ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to  Final figures will be released Monday.

4. "The Fighter" - $12.2 Million
5. "The Tourist" - $8.7 Million
6. "Tangled" - $8.68 Million
7. "Black Swan" - $8.3 Million
8. "How Do You Know" - $7.6 Million
9. "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" - $4.8 Million
10. "Unstoppable" - $1.8 Million

Exciting MAPA Announcement!

Dear MAP-Animaniacs!

Thank you all for making the inaugural year of the Midwest Association of Professional Animators so successful.

In our first year alone, we successfully hosted a 5 month professional lecture series, built relationships between artists and employers in the local market, increased awareness of local productions and threw an amazing art show with our Cell-a-Bration.
I think you will find that 2011 holds even more surprises! 
  1. We have already begun planning our first Adobe Boot Camp, tentatively scheduled for January 29 at Stageport.
  2. The first draft of our 501(c) application has been drawn up and should be finished in the next few months, which will allow us to raise funds and help more local artists.
  3. We have a very successful blog that has attracted more than 7,000 visits in the last two months of 2010.
  4. Our submission form for our first animated film festival is nearly complete.
  5. And we have already scheduled our next Cell-a-Bration for Labor Day weekend, 2011.
In the light of all our success, I have a very special announcement to make.
MAPA was recently approached by the Arts Council of Metropolitan Kansas City to participate in an exciting venture detailed below.

The Robert Altman Emerging Filmmakers Fund

This fund will allow local filmmakers, within several counties including and surrounding Kansas City, to apply for assistance in getting their short film productions off the ground. Similar to the way the Charlotte Street Foundation has invested more than $675,000 over the past 13 years to individual artists, this new annual fund will leverage institutional and corporate support in the form of donations and grants. The first year goal is to provide up to 10 local filmmakers grants between $1,000 and $5,000 in film budgets.

The fund is the brainchild Justin Gardner, Social Media Manager for AMC Theaters and member of the Greater Kansas City Film Commission. Through his guidance, it has grown into a partnership between ArtsKC, AMC Theaters, the Film Commission and now MAPA.

All fiduciary responsibility and awards governance for this exciting venture will be handled by ArtsKC and overseen by Paul Tyler, Fund Grants Director. With his more than 16 years of experiences in providing artists with funding, we know the program will thrive under his expert direction.

The Film Commission plans to launch the Robert Altman Emerging Filmmakers Fund in 2011 in coordination with the Kansas City Film Festival ( The Arts Council will select a panel of judges to re-convene every year. Candidates can apply online, either through the Film Commission website, (, or through the Arts Council website, ( The independent review panel will provide objective judging and an impartial evaluation of entries, apart from the Film Commission Board, to avoid any conflicts of interest.

The Fund has already received initial support of $1,000 from local filmmaker and fund founder Justin Gardner. The first year funding goal of $35,000 will be raised corporate gifts, ranging from $1,000 to $10,000.

So what does this mean for MAPA?

As explained to us, the fund is primarily for local filmmakers who have submitted short works to ANY film festival, not just the KC Film Fest. That means it would also include applicants to the animated festival we are working so hard to build.

Until MAPA becomes a legal non-profit later this year, we cannot begin fundraising directly for our organization. We can, however, kick off our fundraising efforts for this program beneath the umbrella of the Arts Council. All proceeds raised to support the fund would be managed by ArtsKC. In return, we would be able to attach our organization name and support to the program, fixing us into what could become a long-term benefit for local artists. Furthermore, it would provide a safe “training-ground” for our own fundraising programs.

So what is next?

For those of you interested in participating, I would like to propose hosting a fundraising event for early to mid-Spring in support of this fund. Anyone who gets involved would be working directly with me and the Arts Council to make this dream a reality, not to mention building more relationships within the local art and film communities.

If you are interested, please contact me directly at 816-267-0719 or by email at

Thank you so much for making MAPA such a success and I look forward to another great year!

Dylan Dietz
Midwest Association of Professional Animators

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Grants of up to $5,000 available for local moviemakers

Excerpt from article posted on Thu, Nov. 25, 2010 By ROBERT W. BUTLER in The Kansas City Star

"Local moviemakers could catch a break next year with the establishment of the Robert Altman Emerging Filmmakers Fund, which will award grants of up to $5,000 to local writers, directors and producers of short films.
Created by the Film Commission of Greater Kansas City, the fund (named, of course, after KC native and Hollywood maverick Robert Altman), will be administered by the Arts Council of Metropolitan Kansas City.
“It’s an effort to help out local filmmakers who are doing great things,” said Justin Gardner, filmmaker, social media manager for AMC Entertainment and a film commission board member.
Film Commission members are seeking contributions from local corporations. They hope the Altman Fund can start bestowing grants early next year."

To reach Robert W. Butler, call 816-234-4760 or send e-mail to

Lilfuchs goes Psychedelic for Adult Swim

Time for a mind-altering holiday treat.  This trippy music video called "Flying Lotus" was directed by lilfuchs and commissioned by Adult Swim.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Amazing Animation created from User Submitted Drawings

Ok Gang!  I just had to put this on our page because it's stuff like this that makes me smile.  This is an example of Crowd Animation, where all the pictures were drawn and submitted by users of this Portuguese guy who calls himself Mystery Guitar Man.  It's not surprising that this video has gone viral.

Love Dylan... Enjoy!

"Tron" Light Cycles Subject of New Stop-Motion Project

Found in NewsOK by Lillie-Beth Brinkman; Published: December 16, 2010
Image courtesy Kyle Roberts; Video courtesy The Oklahoman.

Oklahoma Videographer Kyle Roberts of Reckless Abandonment Pictures utizlized more than 1000 still photos to construct his latest film, "Tron - Speed of Light."  It marks his first attempt with light painting, a technique which involves keeping your camera shutter open for several seconds and then “drawing” in the air with some sort of flashlight, all in the dark.

Check out his NewsOK interview about the project and his previous films here:  (all advertisments connected to the video are the property of The Oklahoman.  MAPA has not received, nor will request proceeds for these.)

'Corpse Bride' director reinvents the Land of Oz

Original article by Elizabeth Grunewald of Escapist Magazine | posted 16 Dec 2010 5:15 pm
Image courtesy Metro-Goldwyn Mayer.

Mike Johnson, co-director of Corpse Bride, will head over the rainbow for Vanguard Animation’s latest CG/stop-motion hybrid of Wizard of Oz.  The project will be called ‘Oz Wars.’ 

Vanguard Animation is known for such animated films as Valiant and Happily N'Ever After.   Studio execs promise the new feature will be a "contemporary, freaky action-packed PG-13 audience pleaser."

Sony Animation Recruits 'Finding Nemo' writer and 'Iron Giant' Animator

Full article by Ross Miller of posted December 16, 2010.

‘Nemo’ writer, David Reynolds, will adapt a script idea proposed by long-time animator Stephan Franck in an undisclosed project recently picked up by Sony Animation.  The untitled film is the first in a four-picture deal Sony signed with the Gotham Group in 2009.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Hey MAPA!!! Come meet Sponsorship Chair from SIGGRAPH Los Angeles!

Help us toast the end of our inaugural year for the Midwest Association of Professional Animators!

Our final meeting will be:
Friday, December 17th
7:00-9:00 p.m.
The Broadway Cafe
4106 Broadway
Kansas City, Missouri 64111. 

Our very special guest will be Diana Lee, Sponsorship Chair of ACM SIGGRAPH, Los Angeles Chapter!  She is a KC girl coming home for the holidays and is eager to meet you all. 

We will also be discussing our Adobe Boot Camp, the Altman Awards (copies will be available) and our next fundraiser!

Hope to see you there.

Dylan Dietz
Midwest Association of Professional Animators

Final 3rd Friday Art Walk for 2010!

Winner Road Gallery hosts final Art Walk for the year on December 17.
10916 E. Winner Road
Independence, MO

Script Writers Wanted! $10k in Prizes!

As seen on CNN… Get read by more than 90 production companies!  Grand prize winner claims $10,000!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Getting Geared Up for Siggraph Asia 2010

SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 Fact Sheet
SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 will be held from December 15 to 18 at the Coex Convention and Exhibition Center in Seoul Korea.
This is the third edition of SIGGRAPH Asia, following its debut in Singapore in 2008 and a successful show in Japan in 2009. Having staged SIGGRAPH in North America for 37 years, the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) presented SIGGRAPH Asia to bring digital innovations from around the globe to the region, while tapping into its vibrant and emerging digital media landscape.

Over four days, the computer graphics and interactive techniques communities in Korea and the world over will be able to discuss and view the best innovation, ideas and inventions. These are brought to audiences through much-anticipated programs such as:

Computer Animation Festival
The Computer Animation Festival, a traditional highlight at SIGGRAPH Asia, will feature exceptional works in visual effects and computer animation from around the world. The

Computer Animation Festival is presented through two screenings:
-Electronic Theater presents carefully selected pieces of the latest innovations in digital animation. The pieces presented represent the best that animation and visual effects have to offer, having been selected by an international jury made up of renowned digital animation experts, leading visual effects producers and top professionals in the industry.

-Animation Theater presents viewers with a digital feast of short stories that capture the flavor of the world of animation and visual effects. Works in the animation theatre is also hand-picked by the Computer Animation Festival’s international jury. A respected benchmark in the industry, the Computer Animation Festival will name the Best of Show and Jury Awards from among the selected pieces. Notable works will also be specially invited to be included in Computer Animation Festival. Panel discussions and talks on selected pieces will also be conducted, to further enhance the insights gained from the screenings.

Another highly sought-after program at SIGGRAPH Asia, the Courses program aims to support and enhance the development of skills and knowledge among the computer graphics and interactive techniques talent pool. Through the high quality and carefully selected sessions, participants can keep updated on the latest technology and techniques in animation, computer-human interaction, entertainment, mobile computing, robotics and scientific visualization. SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 also will also include an enhanced line-up of courses on games and stereoscopic 3D, as well as topics that cater to the digital graphics community in Asia. Aimed at both young talents and experienced industry professionals, the comprehensive array of
topics will be presented by instructors comprising academics and professionals from universities, production houses, research institutes and other notable organizations. Selected sessions will also be presented in Korean, to allow for a more focused discussion among the local community.

Technical Papers
The Technical Papers program is where cutting-edge, peer reviewed research will be presented and discussed. Carefully selected from hundreds of submissions worldwide, the Technical Papers presented at SIGGRAPH Asia are among the most respected and innovative ideas and breakthrough concepts in the industry. Topics discussed will span the entire spectrum of computer graphics and interactive techniques from animation, GPU algorithms, imaging, image and video processing, modeling, physical simulation, real-time and photo-realistic rendering, texturing, and more. Technical Papers presented in SIGGRAPH Asia will be collated in a special issue of Transaction on Graphics, the prestigious, industry-defining publication of the ACM.

Technical Sketches and Posters
The Technical Sketches and Posters program offers a unique interactive platform for presenting thought-provoking and emerging ideas in the industry. In the Sketches program, concepts behind breakthrough techniques in art, cinema, digital design
and engineering are presented and discussed. These sessions expand the application of new inventions, and pave the way for enhancing the application of new techniques and technologies in the future.

Preliminary and incremental works are also displayed throughout the conference through the Posters program to inspire and challenge professionals towards new tangents. Scheduled sessions, where authors can share their innovative ideas with like-minded enthusiasts, will complement the display.

Trade Exhibition
Visitors to the Trade Exhibition will be delighted by the leading-edge hardware, software, robotics, interactive techniques and other tools and services in a display of the latest in computer graphics and interactive techniques. SIGGRAPH Asia is also a networking and recruiting platform for students, fresh graduates and professionals and the trade exhibition will attract decision makers from around the world and from every aspect in the computer graphics and interactive techniques

Exhibitors include leading names in computer graphics animation, international production houses, game developers, as well as hardware and software vendors. SIGGRAPH Asia is a one stop business platform that draws exhibitors and attendees from multiple disciplines; from animators to engineers, from software and game developers to IT experts, from leading executives to students, from manufacturers to distributors. Potential exhibitors or sponsors may obtain more information at

Computer Animation Festival Fact Sheet
Chair: Jinny HyeJin Choo, ONCOMM & Korea National University of Arts (K’ARTS)
Conference: Wednesday 15 December – Saturday 18 December
Exhibition: Thursday 16 December – Saturday 18 December

Fast Facts:
The SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 Computer Animation Festival displays the cutting edge of innovation and transition in computer graphics and interactive techniques and features a wide spectrum of creative and innovative computer-generated animation and visual effects.
The SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 Computer Animation Festival program received a total of 761 works from 47 countries. Over 40 percent of the submissions come from Asia.
Submissions have increased by 34 percent as compared to SIGGRAPH Asia 2009.
A total of 26 clips from 10 countries have been selected for screening at the Electronic Theater to date, representing an acceptance rate of just 3.4 and reflecting the highly competitive selection criteria.
82 clips will be screened at the Animation Theater. Seven of these are from host country, Korea.

A Quote from the SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 Computer Animation Festival Chair:
“The SIGGRAPH Asia Computer Animation Festival celebrates its third edition this year and I am looking forward to another exciting display of cutting edge innovation and the latest techniques in computer graphics and interactive techniques. The quality of work selected for this year’s festival represents the most creative sparks and freshest ideas from around the world that is set to inspire the artists, designers, researchers and scientists attending the Festival. SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 Computer Animation Festival has received more entries this year, allowing us to broaden the scope of programs and include stronger content. In addition, more local Computer Graphics companies and individual creators have been involved in the submission process. I am positive attendees will be pleased with the abundant variety of excellent pieces at both the Electronic Theater and the Animation Theater screenings. There will also be talks on selected pieces.”

SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 Computer Animation Festival Award Winners
Best of Show: Poppy
James Cunningham
Supercollider (New Zealand)
Based on true events, Poppy is a short story about two soldiers who found a baby in a muddy ditch, under his dead parents. One of the men wants to save the baby but the other does not. James Cunningham and Leslie Chan spent a year in a spare bedroom making this independent film. The pair explored the emotional potential of computer-generated imagery (CGI), which is a technique commonly used in animations for kids.

Best Technical Prize: Civilization V.
Istvan Zorkoczy
Digic Pictures (Hungary)
In Civilization V, players strive to become Ruler of the World by establishing and leading a civilization from the dawn of man into the space age, waging war, conducting diplomacy, discovering new technologies, going head-to-head with some of history's greatest leaders and building the most powerful empire the world has ever known. Civilization V will come to life in a beautifully detailed, living world that will elevate the game play experience with new tools to manage and expand the player’s civilization, extensive modeling capabilities, and intensely competitive multiplayer options.

Best Student Prize: Loom
Ilija Brunck, Jan Bitzer and Csaba Letay
Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg (Germany)
In this interesting piece, a moth, caught in a spider’s web, faces its predator bravely. After being digested, the moth becomes an integral part of its own trap, that is, the spider’s web.

SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 Computer Animation Festival Program Highlights: Participation from Korea
Memories of the Song (Animation Theater)
Jin Sung Choi
Brian’s Film
This 3D cartoon music video is about the unforgettable memories of love and dreams. This is the second consecutive time that Jin Sung Choi’s work has been accepted to the Animation Theater – a pioneering achievement for this highly competitive platform. The music video describes memories from a boy’s dream and features cartoons in every scene, making the piece highly pictorial while capturing individual expressions excellently.

Mom (Animation Theater)
Wooksang Chang
Chung-Ang University/GSAIM, Fxgear
This short animation is about a woman’s life. In Korea, a wedding has the meaning of "Leaving one’s home to live in one’s husband’s home". The animation chronicles a woman’s life, when she was a baby, a daughter, a lady, a wife, and now a mother. These memories flash before her as she goes back to her old home to visit her own mother.

Captain Banana (Animation Theater)
Hoopyung Shin
Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology
This animation depicts the story of Captain Banana. In a deserted world, Captain Banana flies to the Banana swinging boat to operate it. The impatient passengers of the attraction, the so-called "Littles" force him to drive the boat faster and faster! Eventually, as the system overloads, the banana boat crashes and the “Littles” bounce out of the ball and fall into the nearby oasis. Captain Banana tries to avoid it but he ultimately fails to stop one of the “Littles” from falling into the oasis, starting a process with no way back and that was not meant to happen.

Other highlights:
Animated History of Poland (Electronic Theater)
Tomek Bagiński
Platige Image (Poland)
This production chronicles about 1000 years of Polish history in a formula of a music-visual poem. The story starts with the beginning of the Polish nation in the ninth century, showcasing the most important events and processes that took place until the 21st century. It is an educational project produced for the EXPO 2010 in Shanghai.

Harmonix ‘The Beatles: Rock Band’ Intro Cinematic (Electronic Theater)
Pete Candeland
Passion Pictures (UK)
Developed by Harmonix and MTV and launched in September last year, The Beatles: Rock Band game offers players the opportunity to perform 45 classic songs from the band’s catalogue. Pete Candeland directed a spectacular two-minute animated intro cinematic in which we accompany The Beatles from their earliest gigs at The Cavern Club in Liverpool along the pathway to international fame. Using some of The Beatles’ best known songs director Candeland shows the band’s extraordinary creative development culminating in the psychedelic late sixties. The crew at Passion Pictures numbered over 50 people and the animation took nearly five months to complete.

Flap Flap (Animation Theater)
Tom Weber
Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg (Germany)
Flap Flap depicts a desert somewhere, where two birds with digestive disorders are fooling around with an old sun-bleached skull. What they do not foresee, is that even a skull has its limits.

Logorama (Animation Theater)
H5 (François Alaux, Hervé de Crécy, Ludovic Houplain)
Autour de Minuit Productions (France)
This short animation involves spectacular car chases, an intense hostage crisis and wild animals rampaging through the city. About 3,000 brands, logos and characters, which are very familiar to attendees, will show up in the movie. The experimental play with logos appeals to the public with its hyper-realism humor.

Planzet (Electronic Theater)
Jun Awazu
CoMix Wave Films (Japan)
In 2053, aliens have invaded Earth, and most of the population is lost. Akishima, a young robot pilot helps her sister evacuate to Mars, while Mankind's operation Planzet is called to defeat the aliens once and for all.

The Cinematics of StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty (Electronic Theater)
Jeff Chamberlain
Blizzard Entertainment (USA)
Three distinct and powerful races clash once again in the fast-paced, real-time strategy sequel to the legendary original, StarCraft. Legions of upgraded veterans and brand-new unit types will do battle across the galaxy, as each faction struggles for survival.

Behind-the-Scenes of VFX on Feature Films (Talks)
Andy Kang
Sung Jin Jung,
Wook Kim
DIGITAL IDEA Corporation (Korea)
In this presentation, VFX supervisors from DIGITAL IDEA talk about creating VFX shots: how pre-visualization is used to design and simulate difficult shots; how digital matte painting is used to create virtual backgrounds; how crowd simulation, set extension, and digital environments are created; and how they all come together to bring the director's vision to reality.

“The Clone Wars” – Setting the Bar for TV Animation (Talks)
Jass Mun
Lucasfilm Animation Singapore (Singapore)
In this session, Jass Mun, Senior FX Artist for Lucasfilm Animation Singapore, talks about the production pipeline and how the production teams, from layout to final compositing, work together to deliver high-quality episodes of “The Clone Wars” on deadline.

Full information for the Computer Animation Festival can be found on:
For more information on SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 program updates, please visit

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