MASTERS - Industry leaders
For over ten years Darren Price has grown Mighty Nice, Sydney into an internationally recognised creative studio delivering award-winning animation for clients around the world. He has directed hundreds of TV commercials and co-directed 52 episodes of ‘Bottersnikes & Gumbles’ in 2015-2016, a twice Logie-nominated children’s series. He is also co-creator of ‘Kazoops’ a preschool TV series. Darren established the 3D studio for Nexus Productions, London (2001–2007), then went on to win a BAFTA for his first short movie “Potapych – The Bear Who Loved Vodka”.
Softly has been a Creative Partner at Mighty Nice, Sydney since its inception. As Art Director she boasts a broad background in graphic design, advertising, magazine and print industries. Her designs for SBS idents won PromaxBDA Asia, Best 2D Animation Design and Gold One Show, Design, 2010. Her Melbourne Writers Festival designs won Mobius for Outstanding Creativity, and One Show in 2009. Softly was Global Art Director for ‘Kazoops’ in 2015 and essential in the early development and marketing of ‘Bottersnikes & Gumbles’ bibles and pitching stages in 2014–2015.
With 24 years experience in design, Richard has forged a unique career in creative media, encompassing some of the most ambitious and unique storytelling challenges of our times. Richard’s inventive spirit and passion for innovation has been a leading influence on such highly acclaimed productions as the Ceremonies for the Shanghai World Expo, Vancouver and Beijing Olympics, the Doha Asian Games and most recently, A Symphony of Lights Hong Kong. As founder of Artists in Motion, a Creative Projects Company - Richard continues to embrace challenges of iconic productions across the globe.
Mike is the Creative Director and Co-Founder of MISTER. Since graduating from Advertising and Design School in South Africa, Mike has gained almost 20 years experience working with some of the world’s leading studios, across 3 continents. 12 years spent in London, exposed him to a huge amount of talent and creative thinking. Mike collaborates through the process of creativity and is in his element when working with clients to achieve great results. Confident in shooting and directing for post and directing CGI and animation, ensures an extremely high level of finish to his work.
Kirsty began her career in broadcast TV in the 1980's. After gaining further experience working at London post houses such as The Mill and Smoke & Mirrors she returned to her native Sydney to continue working on high-end TV commercials within the Animal Logic compositing team. As one of the original members of Animal Logic's film crew, she initially composited and sequence supervised on early projects such as Babe, The Matrix and Moulin Rouge. Since then, Kirsty has gone on to supervise numerous VFX projects. Kirsty’s credits include The Great Gatsby, The LEGO Movie and Peter Rabbit.
Felicity Coonan has worked creatively in the visual effects and animated film industry since its inception in Australia. Most recently Felicity was Art Director on The LEGO Ninjago Movie and was one of the production Art Directors on Happy Feet 2. Prior to this Felicity worked with Zack Snyder as Associate Art Director for Legend of the Guardians, also designing and directing the fully animated 3D credit / title sequence. She loves VR, 3D stereo imagery and all things appy. She is known to work on films, books, apps, websites and other forms of storytelling design.
Grant has been working in the Visual Effects and Animation industry since 1998, as an Illustrator, Art Director, VFX Supervisor and Production Designer. Most recently, Grant was Production Designer on The LEGO Batman Movie and The LEGO Movie. Prior to this, Grant served as Art Director on Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole, Directed by Zack Snyder, for which he won an AFI ACTAA award for Best Visual Effects. This followed his previous collaboration as Visual Effects Art Director on Snyder’s 300, for which he won a Satellite award for VFX.
Finn is a Creative Director with over 15 years experience working throughout the film, television and advertising industry. Passionate about design and storytelling, Finn has worked with some of Sydney’s most esteemed visual effects and motion graphics companies. With the ability to create unique & detailed visions, his understanding of motion & effects allows him to push traditional design into a bespoke and highly visual platform. Whether Finn is re-branding or design directing title sequences for film, television & advertising, his passion for great design is limitless.
After founding Supervixen with Morten Rowley in 2009, Daniel has developed a broad palette of skills covering creative consultancy for film and television, art direction, animation and a strong understanding of campaign development. Some of his past projects include Design and Direction for films such as Underworld: Blood Wars, American Pastoral, The Vatican Tapes and the rebrand of the US film studio Lakeshore Entertainment. Nowadays, Daniel directs his passion for Direction, Design and Concept Art into Supervixen to help create unique work that stands the test of time.
Mel is a director, designer and animator based in Sydney. She has been working in the broadcast and commercial industry for over 12 years in post production companies, animation studios, broadcast companies and commercial and content production companies. Mel is currently working as a freelancer.
An awarded motion designer, Mike's work has featured in some of the industry’s most respected design blogs and publications. As an active member of the design community, he is also a proud member of the NSW council for AGDA (Australian Graphic Design Association). Mike regularly speaks at industry events, guest lectures for design colleges and teaches motion graphics classes and workshops.
Barbara is the Managing Director of Flying Bark. At Flying Bark, Barbara has produced The Woodlies, Tashi and the award-winning and international box office success Maya the Bee Movie, as well as a film and television series revival of the beloved Australian classic, Blinky Bill. Barbara is currently working on a slate of new development projects, and is the chairman of the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) advisory committee for animation, industry advisor for Screen Producers Association (SPA) and a member of the advisory committee for the Screen Forever conference.
Chris Ebeling is a world-class animator and digital artist having worked on Hollywood blockbusters such as The Lego Movie, The Great Gatsby and Happy Feet 2. Chris is currently the Creative Lead at the Animal Logic Academy at the University of Technology, Sydney. This allows him to stay at the forefront of VR and AR technologies. With over a decade of feature film, television and video-game experience, Chris’s ambition and contagious passion for artistic story telling remains unquenchable.
Diana Costantini is a multi-award winning Creative Director with a diverse history in broadcast design, branding, promotions and marketing. Diana travelled the world working for various media organisations before founding her own design and branding agency, Tactic Creative, in Sydney Australia. Tactic operated for 12 years and during that time, the Tactic creative team were successful in winning pitches all over the world. Diana has personally been Creative Director across 30+ TV channel branding projects and is currently head of the newly formed in-house creative agency ABC Made at the ABC.
Robert is an expert at bringing ideas to life and has an extensive background in design and visual effects. His passion to direct individually beautiful pieces can be seen in the variety of projects he has crafted. Whether it’s live action, broadcast design, channel branding, or character animation, the detail is inspired by his love of storytelling. Rob is a freelance Creative Director.
Tim is a multi-award winning Creative Director, Designer, Compositor and Editor. He brings over 20 years experience in the creative industries and is the founder of boutique production house Resolution Design. Tim is a unique Directorial talent able to combine performance; animation and visual effects work in a confident and fresh approach. Tim’s creativity expresses itself in many ways, through photography, architecture and as a keen collector of art. Tim has received local and international acclaim for his imaginative visual work and direction.
Alice is an animation director, designer and illustrator for the commercial and broadcast worlds. Her playful style has seen her win multiple awards in both Sydney and London, where she began her career directing for animation studios and working on feature films with directors such as Edgar Wright, Martin Scorsese and Kenneth Branagh. Alice's hands on approach allows her to endlessly experiment with different techniques and keeps her passion for craft satisfied.
After working in London for five years James established Hackett Films in 2004, and has gone on to build an incredibly diverse portfolio of work spanning music videos, TV series, commercials, branding, and broadcast graphics (to name a few). The studio’s work has gone on to win multiple awards – there’s even a couple of Arias sitting in the office. James and Studio Hackett have carved themselves a unique place in the Australian production industry.
John is an award winning motion graphic designer, trainer and presenter specialising in Adobe After Effects and Maxon Cinema 4D. John has been a teacher and active contributor to the worldwide motion graphics community for over two decades, through his website Motionworks.net and through tutorials, webinars and live presentations for Adobe, GenArts, Boris FX, Red Giant Software Zaxwerks and others.
Marcelle is an award-winning, multi-disciplinary producer, director and creative director with more than 20 years experience in storytelling, design for brand development and film projects. She has worked locally and internationally for iconic brands and has also worked at the cutting edge of the youth market across fashion, surf, skate and music culture. Prior to her current position as founder and director at muster, Marcelle was a director at Cream, creative director at Zspace, international creative director of iconic Australian brand Mambo, and prior to that, creative director of the Festival/Mushroom Group.
Brendan is an award winning Director, Designer and Animator. With 20 years experience in the visual communications industry, his work spans film and television content, branding campaigns, music video and experiential environments such as exhibition and live performance visuals.
A creative professional with a passion for excellence, Liv loves to tell stories through engaging performances, meticulously designed visuals and dynamic animation. Liv started as a Designer at Emerald City, a leading design and VFX company. After living in London and working at a number of design studios and TV networks, Liv returned to Sydney and became Creative Director of Emerald City. Being tempted back to London, Liv gained a Masters in Filmmaking and directed the award-winning short film Spoons. Liv is now back home creating new exciting screen content.
Mark is enjoying a pivot into Virtual Reality and immersive story telling from his vantage point in LA. He is open to conversations with tech people, production people, advertising people about where the next wonderful thing will come from. Mark is the Creative Director, Creative Producer at Sixty40.
Suzanne is an Emmy Award winning producer, a twice recipient of the SPA Children's Producer of the Year and winner of the 2014 B&T Women in Media Producer of the Year. Suzanne has 20 years experience in the television business. Suzanne was a SPA board member for three years leading the Animation & New Media Division. She is the Founder and CEO of SLR Productions; one of Australia’s leading children’s entertainment companies, that she established in 2002. She has executive produced 145 hours of children’s content sold to 185 countries worldwide.
Director, VFX supervisor, and motion designer, Scott focuses on design-led VFX and art direction for film and TV commercials, and specialises in title sequences. He is known for his ability to uniquely articulate the problem and its context, define solutions that are considered and compelling, and deliver consistently eloquent executions. Scott is also the founder of Substance, member of AGDA and the APDG, and frequent speaker at industry events. His work has won or been shortlisted internationally at the New York One Show, Promax, AEAF, Create, AGDA and APDG Awards, and the Tropfest Craft Awards.
Susan Danta - Educator
Susan is an award-winning animator and educator with over fifteen years of experience in film and television. Her practice spans across traditional and digital techniques. She has developed educational curriculum in animation and visual effects with a focus on collaborative storytelling through emerging technologies. Susan is a professional member of the Australian Directors Guild, a member of the Korea Research Institute, Script Assessor for the Australian Writers Guild, and a member of the Childhood, Nation and Work Cinema Research Network (funded by the Leverhulme Trust).
Travis is a straight up visual director, he uses both the camera and VFX as his tools to bring technically challenging stories to the screen. He focuses on photo-real VFX which allows him to transform any 'out-there' idea into something visually amazing. Travis has a decorated past. He began as a commercial photographer in London, moving through a landscape of still work, live action, and visual effects, to arrive where he is today at AIRBAG. His work is - all at once - technical, beautiful, subtle and bold.
Christien has been in the animation industry since 2007, animating on TV series and advertising projects across multiple studios. In 2013 he joined the team Studio Moshi as the Animation Director, producing high quality animated series with local and international partners, while helping develop projects internally and bringing new and exciting talent to the studio.
With a background in the indie-rock band Underground Lovers, Maurice went back to study Multimedia and shortly after formed BES Animation with Bruce Kane in 2004. Maurice took on the position of the lead artistic director creating the comical and stylish signature aesthetic that BES has become known for. He co-created the Cartoon Network Asia tele-movies Exchange Student Zero and Monster Beach. He is also Co-Creator, Series and Artistic Director for BES’s original series Kitty is Not a Cat for Network Seven.
Brendan is the VFX Supervisor for Luma Pictures, Melbourne and has been with the studio since its inception in 2012. With a design background and artist experience in FX, Lighting and Compositing, Brendan has carved out a strong look development career across numerous blockbuster films. Passionate about filmmaking and a sucker for sci-fi, Brendan supervises with a keen eye for conceptual design and story telling and loves to collaborate and create.
Three words sum up Alan - attention to detail. He constantly excels with the detail he infuses in all of his work along with a lush cinematic quality covering photo-real creatures, stylised characters, organic and hard-body surfaces. Co-founder and Look Development artist at Cadre Pictures, Alan ensures every project is finished to the highest possible standard with stunning visuals to match.
Pat Da Cunha
Having worked at numerous post houses and studios across both Melbourne and Sydney, Pat has gained varied experiences across a broad range of full-time and freelance roles. From working as a 3d generalist and project lead at more process and pipeline focused post houses. As well as a designer and art director at smaller design led studios. Now working as a creative director, Pat is interested in how to best combine the more technical skill sets and pipelines of larger post houses with the design focused and creative solutions found in smaller studios.
Lilian is an Art Director and Illustrator, with more than a decade of experience, providing concept work and illustrative assets for animation and other digital content. Her style can be summed up as whimsical, colourful and bright. She specialises in concept and art direction, character design, environment design and illustration. Her main area of interest is in animated productions for games, television, and commercials.
Cameron is the founding director of Melbourne-based animation studio Dirty Puppet. With a strong background in design, Cam's animations oscillate between vibrant, colourful character work and emotive, illustration-driven narrative pieces. Cam is ever-fascinated with deconstructing character illustrations, and constantly evolves his custom rigging processes and workflow to find new ways to breathe life into his creations. Having presented at a wide range of conferences and industry functions, Cam is a proud and passionate member of the Melbourne animation and motion design community.
Simon is an experienced motion designer working in creative direction & motion design for over 17 years. As well as leading teams across a broad range of 2D & 3D motion graphics projects, he specialises in abstraction and particle FX using plugins such as Plexus and Xparticles. Having worked for branding agencies in London and broadcast design houses in Sydney, his past roles have included being a Senior Motion Designer at Digital Pictures Iloura and Head of design at Method Studios Australia. He is currently working freelance. He also runs a regular industry event meet-up, Melbourne Motion.
Annabel has been Founder and Creative Director of TILT for nearly twenty years and the company has a portfolio of impressive projects and highly regarded clients globally. Having worked around the world she has been influenced by many cultures and therefore has a broad understanding of different markets and how audiences perceive communication. Although small, TILT has worked with some big name clients, producing some award winning projects.
Spanning the globe, and more than a decade, Katie’s career began in Melbourne in 2002. During that period, Katie hung her hat at some of the world’s top animation and VFX houses and made a home of the Passion Pictures head office in London for almost ten years. Since returning to Melbourne in 2015 to open the Australian chapter of Passion Pictures , Katie has balanced Passion Melbourne’s commercials focus with altruistic and art-based pursuits, including a showcase of the (additional) aesthetic prowess of Passion’s global directors.
Kelly is a director, animator and producer with over 15 years experience in animation. She has worked on a variety of high quality Australian and international TV series. She co-founded the animation studio Bigkidz Entertainment in 2001, working variously as a director, editor, animator, production manager and background designer on television series and pilots, TVC’s and award-winning short animated films. Kelly has a degree in Visual Arts in Animation and has lectured at a tertiary level in Story Structure and Project Management. Currently Kelly is a director and co-owner of 12field Animation studio.
Callan is the co-founder and Creative Director of Jumbla, an award winning animation and motion graphics studio with offices in South Melbourne and London. With a background in graphic design and storytelling and an eclectic taste, Callan leads the Melbourne team of designers, illustrators, motion graphic artists and animators to create high quality, compelling and emotive visual narratives for all kinds of clients across many different industries. Callan has recently launched Jumbla Academy to help train and educate aspiring motion graphic artists.
Beginning his career in print design, Raoul worked in London as a designer in film advertising. Since returning to Australia in 2011, he has focused on a freelancing career in motion graphics. Early on Raoul worked with agencies like Where There’s Smoke. Over the last four years, he has collaborated with Patrick Clair of Antibody and with Los Angeles-based agency Elastic to produce the opening titles for True Detective, The Crown and Westworld among others. Raoul is a leader in Cinema 4D design and animation and a Emmy Award winning designer.
Andrew has a strong visual foundation in fine art, technical knowledge and creative passion partnered with a wealth of production and post production experience. He has worked on Australian TV dramas, films and in some of the top studios in Australia, London and New York. Andy is currently a Director & VFX Artist at Pixel.
James is Founder and Creative Director of Yes Captain, a design led motion studio based in Melbourne. With 20 years experience across feature films, television, advertising, music videos, shorts, events, documentaries and digital, James takes a no bull shit approach to creating entertaining, narrative driven, emotive design and animation. James is also Co-Founder of NodeFest - Australia's dedicated motion design event.
Mark is the Animation Director at Viskatoons were he directs the team of storyboard artists, animators, editors and sound recordists to turn scripts into a quality finished video. Mark has 18 plus years industry experience, having begun his professional career at the tender age of 17. Blending his traditional background in animation with modern tools, his directing style is strong and fresh, with dedicated creative problem solving skills and a passion for creating unique character and style for each project he works on.
Peter has been a major part of the Australian animation industry for 35 years where he has kept abreast of technology to be a content creator and producer for global television networks, international advertising agencies and online games. Beginning his career as a cartoonist he progressed to illustrating the famous ‘Far Out, Brussel Sprout’, ‘All Right, Vegemite’ and ‘Unreal, Banana Peel’ series of books. Peter is the founder and the Creative Director at Viskatoons, an independent animation studio that produces high end animated series, as well as content for television and advertisements.
Paul is the backbone of Method Studios Australia FX department. A highly respected industry professional, Paul has worked on many local and international film projects during his 15 year tenure at Method Studios. Paul leads a team of artists that create FX for Method Studios’s vast range of film and TV projects. Paul and the team create water, sand, debris, cannon fire, feather, hair and fur dynamics along with cloth FX.
With a background in design and traditional 2D animation, Glenn has refined his skills over the last 28 years and now oversees many of Method Studios Australia film projects as the VFX Supervisor. With his vast knowledge of film production and his commitment to creative excellence, Glenn supervises Method’s projects from concept to completion. Most recently, Glenn oversaw the Method Studios Australia team that delivered a significant suite of work for the Emmy Awards winning “Battle of the Bastards” Season 6 Episode 9 crescendo of HBO’s tentpole series Game of Thrones.
Emily has over 18 years’ experience in broadcast design, production, animation and virtual reality. She was the founder and owner of production company / studio, Visual Playground, for more than 15 years. Emily’s work at VP was nominated for APGD and SXSW awards, as well as winning multiple, AEAF and Promax awards. Emily has been a major contributor to VR production and the Melbourne VR community over the last four years, running the popular Real World VR events. Emily is currently Business Development Director of Content at eg+ which is part of the Clemenger Group.
Chris Moe Morris
Interested in the why and how of image creation and story telling, Chris works with High speed MOCO, live action, CG 2d/3d and motion design. He focuses on where the disciplines of motion can overlap and where there is opportunity for truly novel work. 2011-2018 he was a Director / Designer at Breeder and before hand, worked across Australia, London and Madrid. Chris now freelances as a Director / Motion Designer / DP and spreads his time between Australia and the EU.
Alt.vfx company Director and VFX Supervisor, Colin Renshaw has collaborated with Australia’s most respected and awarded creatives and has been responsible for making some of the most instantly recognizable commercials of our time. Colin established Alt.vfx in July 2011 and has steered it to become one of the most respected visual effects studios in the Asia-Pacific region. Taking home two coveted Cannes Lions in the company’s first year of business, he believes creative collaborations should be cherished and nurtured.
MASTERS SOUTH AUSTRALIA
Wayne is a Co-Founder and Director of RSP. While studying visual arts in the early '90s Wayne became immersed in using computers for storytelling. In 1993 he completed his first animated short film using 3dStudio. For seven years Wayne was on the board of the Adelaide Film Festival and has been Executive Producer on Australian films Boxing Day and Brother. Since establishing RSP in 1995, Wayne has worked across all levels of the visual effects disciplines in 3d and 2d, and in the last ten years variously as Creative Director, Studio Manager, Head of Production and Managing Director.
Alana served as Compositing Lead for the Quicksilver scene of X-Men: Days of Future Past where her team was responsible for integrating hundreds of CG objects and visual effects into a kitchen environment that was frozen in time. As 2d Supervisor, Alana oversaw delivery of a combined 700 shots on Pan, The Legend of Tarzan and Gods of Egypt. She continued her role as 2d Supervisor on X-Men: Apocalypse and Game of Thrones Season 6. Alana is the Operations Manager (Production) at Rising Sun Pictures.
Anto has over 15 years of experience in film and TV, joining the RSP team in 2009 after previous stints with Photon VFX and Weta Digital. Earlier in his career Anto was an animator on several game titles and numerous TVCs, and an Animation Director on the original award-winning animated TV series The Adventures of Figaro Pho. Anto currently oversees the Model, Build and Animation departments at RSP.
Nigel is the Co-Founder and joint Creative Director of Blockhead, Auckland's leading commercial Visual Effects studio. After spending a decade in senior roles at the Glassworks and MPC London, Nigel and business partner Stefan Coory returned to New Zealand to build a studio that creates work of outstanding craft recognised and awarded worldwide.
Rich is a Freelance 3D motion designer & CG artist with 15+ years experience in both the motion graphics and film VFX world. Coming from a computer science background, he enjoys the challenge of technical direction and problem solving; and applying that within the design and animation field. With a strong emphasis on modelling, lighting and rendering, his focus is on creating works that lie somewhere between the photoreal and the surreal.
Lisha is a Creative Director at Mill+ in Los Angeles where her passion for illustration and story-driven character animation consistently leads her to create captivating, award-winning work. Prior to joining Mill+, Lisha attended the College of Fine Arts in Sydney. She simultaneously worked as a designer and animator at boutique VFX studios where she discovered her love of mixing traditional techniques with digital animation. Since joining Mill+ Lisha has led high-profile commercial, feature film, and music video projects. Her work has be recognized by LIA, Ciclope, Shots , AICE and The Webby Awards.
Having grown up in Dingley Village, an outer suburb of Melbourne, Brian studied Computer Science at Monash University. Brian then moved to Sydney and worked in research and development at the newly formed Animal Logic Studios. After seeing the ‘Toy Story’ movie, Brian decided to apply for a job at Pixar and was rewarded with a position in Pixar's TVC department. He then joined the ‘A Bug’s Life’ feature production team where he created his inaugural character Slim the juggling stick insect. Subsequently, he went on to work as a character supervisor on ‘The Good Dinosaur’, ‘Ratatouille’, ‘Finding Nemo’ and ‘Monsters Inc’, amongst other Pixar blockbusters.
Patrick specialises in combining storytelling with visual design. Many of his films focus on the relationship between technology, culture and ethics. He has created title sequences for major drama series in the United States. These include Netflix’s The Crown, HBO’s Westworld and True Detective which he won an Emmy for in 2014 . He also creates high-end creative videos for the gaming and entertainment industries.
Stephen Van Elst
Stephen is the Executive Creative Director of the Spinifex Group. He oversees graphic design, motion design, interaction design, experience design, brand strategy, brand communication and user experience. Before moving to LA he was the Design Director at Method Studios / Iloura / Boffswana Australia.
Brett is an Australian based in Los Angeles, he is the creative director and founding partner of the motion design studio - Ranger & Fox. With skills across technical direction, look development and art direction. He is driven by the desire to explore challenges with critical thinking, ensuring that artistic integrity is maintained at the highest level.
Motion designer and animator based in Toronto, Alex Gee is a multidisciplinary artist who specialises in animation and short form narrative film making. Alex currently works freelance, as design-led motion graphics studio with a penchant for storytelling.