Tag Archives: Bent Image Lab

Animation for Designers AE Workshop


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Learn how to bring your illustrations to life with local animator Jesse Jones! Jesse has worked on lots of projects with companies like Bent Image Lab, as well as the television show Grimm, here in Portland.  He animates his own cartoons and comics and will be demoing in After Effects for this workshop through PSU.
Instructions on how to create your own character and a free trial of After Effects can be found on the event’s Tumblr page. Please have After Effects downloaded and our characters ready to go when you arrive at the workshop.
May 28, 2015 5:30pm

Animation for Designers: After Effects Workshop with Jesse Jones
2000 SW 5th Avenue, Portland OR  97201
Art Building Room 320

Sign up at: animationfordesigners.tumblr.com

NW Animation Festival Kicks Off Next Week


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The Northwest Animation Festival gets underway next week, offering over 200 amazing films gracing the silver screen at the beloved Hollywood Theater.

Highlights will certainly include the Oregon Animation Industry Showcase:


portlandia_ratsWednesday, May 7 at 7:00pm  |  $12  |

Get a tour of the amazing commercial animation work being done in Oregon: advertisements, music videos, product demos, video games, and visual effects.

The evening kicks off with a showcase of video clips from our world-class local studios and freelancers. You’ll be surprised to learn which brands take life in Portland, and by some of the curious uses of animation in the world of business.

Against this backdrop, Shelley Midthun from the Portland Development Commission will then interview a panel of Portland’s luminaries about art and innovation in professional animation production. Speakers include Shilpa Sunthankar from Fashionbuddha, Roland Gauthier from Hinge Digital, Anna Kvorning from LAIKA, and Will Lewis from the Portland Indie Game Squad.

The evening concludes with a very special hour-long presentation, “Bent Image Lab presents: Animating Portlandia, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Improv in Stop Motion.” Rob Shaw, animation director for the hilarious Portlandia rat gang skits, will give insight into this unusual collaboration, show videos, and answer audience questions. Animation puppets from Bent will be on display in the lobby—don’t miss your chance to see these tiny celebrities in person!


Tickets on sale here for this one time only event.

Another highlight should include the Meet the Animators panel.  Although the specifics are a little vague, it looks promising:


Sunday, May 10 | 12noon

Arrive early on Sunday for a live interview with some of the filmmakers in this year’s festival. “What keeps you inspired as an artist? What unusual tricks went into making your film? What advice do you have for aspiring animators?” …Bring questions of your own for an open Q&A at the end.

FREE EVENT – with free doughnuts provided by Voodoo Doughnut!


Also, don’t miss possibly your last chance to catch 2014’s Siggraph Animation reel –


Tuesday, May 5 at 7:00pm  |  $8  |

The annual SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival is one of the world’s most important showcases for innovative and visually stunning digital animation. Films that win honors here are qualified to compete for an Academy Award, and several in recent memory have been nominated for or received an Oscar for “Best Animated Short.” Films chosen for this special “best of” show include narrative shorts, time-based art, visual effects, scientific visualization, and real-time graphics.


Tickets for this one here.

More info about the fest:  http://www.nwanimationfest.com

‘Round Here Roundup – April 2015


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Just dropped by HouseSpecial – your jaw!

The Alchemist’s Letter from HouseSpecial

Some very good looking work involving a lot of talented artists that will no doubt make the film fest circuit.  Excellent to see HouseSpecial come out guns blazing and continue the rich animation tradition forged by Vinton and LAIKA /house.

Cardboard Castle has been keeping busy, and have a new reel and fresh batch of VFX heavy spots.  Check out the environment work on these spots for East Boston Bank:

EBSB – Manufacturing from Cardboard Castle on Vimeo.

And the breakdown:

EBSB – Manufacturing – VFX Breakdown from Cardboard Castle on Vimeo.

Check out the latest reel and freshened website:

Cardboard Castle 2015 Reel from Cardboard Castle on Vimeo.

Taking the bus from CBC’s Boise ‘hood down to the heart of Division at Bent Image Lab, the team there had an animated piece catch my eye lately – this bit for the recent Nirvana documentary has a nice feel to it:

“Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck” (animated sequences by Stefan Nadelman) from Bent Image Lab

Kudos to animator/director Stefan Nadelman on that one.  Unknown if any of those were inspired or directly lifted from actual Cobain artwork.  The reviews of the film have been stellar.

Making our way up north to lovely St. Johns, we have the boys at Refuge VFX showing off some work outside of their typical bread and butter Grimm fare.  This BTS details some of their work on the film Last Knights.

Related, here’s an extended look into the mind of Refuge owner Fred Ruff over on Allan McKay’s VFX podcast.

Here’s an in-depth BTS from Hinge Digital showing some architectural renderings of the Portland Center Stage Armory, using the real-time tech from Nvidia’s Iray render engine.  Not hard to see how this arch viz exercise could be applied to all sorts of environments and VFX situations, as we move into more virtual and augmented reality scenarios.

NVIDIA “Photo vs CG using Iray & VCA” – Behind the Scenes from Hinge Digital on Vimeo.

On a lighter note, here’s some chuckle worthy fare from Hinge of the 2D animated variety.  Snow knows nothing!

Last but not least, we head across the river to HiveFX, who are busy finishing up another season of Grimm but promise a fresh website and updated reel coming soon.  In the meantime, have a look at this fun spot that company heads Jim Clark and Gretchen Miller put together a while back for Columbia Bank:

Columbia Bank – HIVEFX from GreenRubino on Vimeo.

Obviously the style had to be a bit safer than the average after-hours Grimm gore gracing the airwaves these days.  Any chance to have some fun while doing what we love is a chance taken!   And helping out a local business that has obviously helped them in the past was a nice touch.  Grimm continues to be the gift to Portland that keeps on giving, and HiveFX has the skills to deliver top notch shots on each show they’re awarded.  We’ll all be looking forward to that new site and reel!

Keep those gears turning, Portland!

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