May through August sees Portland giving native son Mel Blanc a long-overdue retrospective. Put together by the Oregon Cartoon Institute and the Oregon Jewish Museum, the Mel Blanc Project is a series of screenings and lectures celebrating the most famous voice talent in animation history. Check the website to get a sense of what’s going on. Screenings and lectures showcase Mel’s life and work in the context of speakeasies, jazz, the golden age of radio, and of course the golden age of Hollywood cartoons. Good stuff.
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After a two-year run as chapter president, it’s my (Mike’s) pleasure to step down so that new president Rebekah Villon can step up! Rebekah’s been active in the scene for years, as a producer, as the ASIFA Portland VP, and as the chief organizer of both the BeTween unconferences and the annual Drinking & Drawing events, among other things. In short, she’s great for the job and already has plans in motion. Welcome to the captain’s chair, Rebekah!
Thanks to all who came out to BeTween 2011, and thanks especially to Ingrid, Jeff, and Kohel for their expertise in RACC grants, taxes, and copyright law respectively. Huge thanks also to Webtrends, for the fantastic space, Oblique Coffee Roasters, and AiPD. We’re seeking feedback, so if you have thoughts about what worked, what didn’t work, and what we could do differently next year, join the ongoing conversation at the BeTween LinkedIn group.
The second annual unconference for Portland’s freelance animators is nearly upon us. Thanks to our friends at Webtrends, we have a big, chic venue overlooking the heart of downtown Portland— seriously, it’s worth coming for the view and coffee.
BeTween is a participant-driven conference about the practicalities of working as a freelance animation artist. Bottom line: if you’re a freelance animation professional or are hoping to become one, you should make the time to attend.
We had great feedback from last year. Participants found the event useful, eye-opening, and, dare we say, fun. Discussion topics can include how to bid a job, how to build a client base, how to manage your taxes, and how to stay creative while staying in business. The organizers will have experts on hand in various fields (copyright law, accountancy, social media, etc.) and could use your expertise as well. Come to share insights, learn about resources, and connect with your community!
Registration is limited, so please sign up in advance. Admission is free to members of ASIFA. Non-members pay $6 in advance, or $10 at the door. Check out the BeTween PDX website to register, get updates, and share your comments, questions, and ideas. See you Saturday!
Thanks to all who made it out to the Show & Tell this weekend, and to Dan Ackerman for hosting at Stage 13. Dan has other events slated for the space that might grab you, including Star Wars animator Peter Kuran with his book “How to Photograph an Atomic Bomb.”
BeTween 2011 is coming up fast… Register, ruminate, and set aside 9:30am-2pm on Saturday, May 7th to talk about the practicalities of making a living as an animator. If you’ve already got a topic you want to hear discussed, please weigh in early by suggesting it on the BeTween site.
Other plans are busily taking shape, including OSNAP (the Open Studio Networking Animation Project)… Stay tuned.
Last night’s Simpsons episode, “Angry Dad: The Movie,” features fond spoofs of the current animation scene, including jabs at Pixar, Sylvain Chomet, and Aardman. Portland stop-motion maven Teresa Drilling worked on the Aardman parody with Musa Brooker for the Chiodo Bros. Teresa writes:
Musa did the “Crumble” shots, while I did most of the “Willis & Miss Pennyfarthing” shots.Working with the Chiodos again was great. I had a chance to do some of the fabricating and testing (what a luxury!) as well as the animation. And of course, a chance to sleep in the “man loft” at the studio. A whirlwind two weeks between the holidays that was a huge amount of fun.
Some members transitioning here from the old website have reported login problems, and to fix this we’ve had to delete some accounts that haven’t been used yet. So if you had an account on the old site but are having trouble activating it on the new one, please create a new account. If your account is already active here, you can ignore this whole business and keep on as usual. Pardon the confusion, and please let us know if you hit any snags.