Be There

Role:  Director,  Producer,  Director of Photography,  Animator 

Produced At:  SCAD,  June 2021 - November 2022

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Film Specifics

Team Size: 38 student volunteers, two outsourced voice actors, and one outsourced composer

Production Length: 17 months

Produced at: SCAD, June 2021 - November 2022

Production Tools: Microsoft Office, Discord, Dropbox, Google Drive, SyncSketch

Software Used: Autodesk Maya, Houdini, ZBrush, Nuke, Adobe Suite

Production Management

      Be There is my MFA thesis film, and is the first film I have directed.  The film was made up entirely of student volunteers in both the graduate and undergraduate programs at SCAD. Students were either full or part-time students and volunteered their time on top of their school work, extracurricular activities, and part-time jobs.  Communication and organization was predominantly online throughout production. A Discord server was created to serve as the central hub of all team communication. 

My Responsibilities

  • Recruiting student and outsourced artists, assigning supervisor roles and delegating tasks to department supervisors and additional production coordinators. 
  • Creation, organization, and set-up of crew Discord server and Dropbox production drive.
  • Creating and updating the shot list, contact list, naming conventions, software list, post-mortem, and class schedule documents.
  • Compiling and distributing previously mentioned production documents for team access and review.
  • Weekly and/or biweekly meetings with departments and department supervisors to provide feedback on deliverables. 
  • Communicating daily with department supervisors, individual artists, production management, and the thesis committee.
  • Setting up, organizing, animating, and exporting cameras for 3D departments.
  • Blocking, splining, and finalizing character animation for shots. 
  • Setup and organization of previsualization assets and files for set dressing and final set. 
  • 3D previsualization animation.
  • Creation of a 120-page process book for the production which included research and production documentation.

 The Thesis

      In this thesis, I made the case that emotional vulnerability offers individual filmmakers as well as teams, a well from which they may draw strength, creativity, and innovation as they seek to push their productions through the animation pipeline to completion.

     My thesis was primarily inspired by my undergraduate degree in psychology, and I was really intrigued to see how I could combine elements of that field with the animation world. 

     The film itself was inspired by my personal life and my relationship with my father who chose to go to rehab for his alcoholism when I was young. It is our shared hope that this film can serve as a reminder that addiction is a disease that can be overcome.  

The Process Book

      As part of the final portion of my master's degree, I had to create a process book that included research on my thesis statement and documentation of the production of my film. I have included screenshots from some of the various sections of my process book below.