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Archive for March, 2010

Week #11: J‐Walt

J‐Walt Spontaneous Fantasia

J‐Walt is a performer interactive designer, filmmaker, graphic artist, and composer. For two decades, he has been at the forefront of interactive art and computer performance, expanding the uses of computer animation into uncharted territories. His Spontaneous Fantasia performances combine aspects of animation, video games, music, theater, dance and architecture into a seamless new art form. He has performed for thrilled audiences around the US as well as in Amsterdam, Hamburg, and Edmonton. In March of 2006, J‐Walt won a Technical Academy Award for his development of a real‐time pre‐visualization system, and in 2003, he received a Themed Entertainment Award for a digital puppetry attraction, one of many digital puppet projects he’s developed over his career. He produced location‐based video games for Sony. He was a founding member of Disney’s VR studio, which created a state‐of‐the‐art virtual reality experience for Disney’s EPCOT center in 1995. J‐Walt grew up in Evanston, Illinois, and attended the Experimental Animation department of CalArts, graduating in 1988. J‐Walt’s movies and images have been exhibited at Ars Electronica, SIGGRAPH, MOCA, Sinking Creek Film Festival, New York Animation Festival, and others. In his spare time, he organizes the Los Angeles Abstract Movie Workshop. He lives in Altadena, California.

2003‐Present: Spontaneous Fantasia Performances

2003‐2006: J‐Viz Pre‐Visualization System for Feature Films and TV

2000‐2003: Interactive Character Designer for Disney

1995‐2000: Location‐Based games and Interactive Theme Park Rides for Sony

1992‐1995: Virtual Reality Studio at Disney, Aladdin VR

1990‐1992: Animator/Developer for TV and movie effects, Homer and Associates

1988‐1990: Animator/Developer of real‐time puppets and pre‐viz for DeGraf/Wahrman, Inc.

1986‐1988: Animator/Developer, VSE, Inc.

1988: Nissan Focus Student Film Award for Recurrents


J‐Walt has performed his Spontaneous Fantasia shows over one hundred times in the US and in Europe. An detailed list is available at http://www.spontaneousfantasia.com/past.html

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Week #10: Shane Acker


Shane Acker is an award-winning director, animator and designer. “9” is a feature length production based his student Academy Award winning short and was produced by Tim Burton and Timor Bekmambetov.

The 11-minute short “9” premiered at Sundance in 2005 and has garnered numerous awards including the “Best in Show” at the 2005 SIGGRAPH Electronic Theater and was nominated for an Academy Award in 2006.

Shane has a multidisciplinary background, studying architecture for several years before becoming a filmmaker. He is a graduate of UCLA’s School of Arts and Architecture where he received both a Masters Degree in Architecture and a MFA in Animation.

Shane is currently an artist in residence at the Gnomon Workshop and a visiting professor in the School of Film and Television at Loyola Marymount University. To learn more about Shane’s work, you can visit his website at www.shaneacker.com

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Kathy Altieri
Production Designer

Kathy Altieri has worked for over twenty five years as a production designer, art director, and painter in the animation industry.  She is currently Production Designer on DreamWorks upcoming feature “How to Train your Dragon,” which will be released in March of this year.  Her other DreamWorks credits include “Over the Hedge” (Production Designer), “Spirit, Stallion of the Cimmaron,” (Production Designer), and “the Prince of Egypt” (Art Director).  Kathy was the first artist hired at the studio.

Prior to DreamWorks,  Kathy worked as a background painter and supervisor at Disney Feature Animation on “The Little Mermaid,”  “Aladdin,”  “Lion King,”  and  “Hunchback of Notre Dame.”

Kathy attended UCLA and Art Center College of design, where she will be teaching again this Fall.  She is a fifth degree black belt and certified instructor of Aikido and Iaido (Japanese Swordsmanship).

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