mari jaye blanchard

NYFA comes to Rochester!

I was honored to speak at NYFA’s recent event at Flower City Arts Center this weekend to promote NYFA’s programming for artists and to let them know how much support is available to them.  After arriving here from Brooklyn two years ago, I have been impressed with spirit of artists in this city, and look forward to spreading the word that NYFA is a resource they should be utilizing!

PREtty Impressive!

Spent my third summer teaching the Summer PreCollege Animation Program at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, and these high school students never cease to amaze me!  For two weeks we covered the entire production pipeline, from the principles of animation and story creation to storyboarding and animation production.  They completed the films below in only five days! An incredible feat by any standard.

Give a dog a bone…

Created this clip to show how the skeleton of a human figure lines up with the skeleton of a dog.  Not entirely anatomically correct, but it certainly helps in the conversation of where the dog’s “knees” actually are!

Years in the making…

Happy Belated Independence Day!

I have fallen behind with posts because of many exciting things (and many things that are not as exciting but part of being a full-time teacher of animation!), but I am happy to say that my Mutoscope, almost two years in the making, should be flipping an animation very, very soon!  It has taken a veritable village to get this thing made, but there’s finally an end in sight!

Posts coming soon of the finished product…once it’s finished!

…every single inch of ground…

Thanks to some amazing colleagues, students and the always-up-for-a-challenge Greg Condon, we were able to complete this pixilation short in Mount Hope Cemetery after a one take, 10-hour shoot on October 17th (the ONE sunny day in the entire month and two weeks before Susan B. Anthony’s grave site was visited by thousands of people who had cast their votes).  May we treasure every single inch of ground we have gained, and protect it for all it’s worth.

Putting the “Pre” in Unprecedented!

For the second year in a row, I spent two weeks in NYC with some incredibly talented, dedicated high school students as part of SVA’s PreCollege Animation Program.  And, for the second year in a row, I was blown away by the determination and work ethic displayed by each and every one of them.  We worked together from 9 in the morning until 4 in the evening, five days each week, and I swear to you they got up from their Cintiq tablets all of three times in ten days. ;)  Congratulations to all of my Summer 2016 students, the world awaits your talents!

“Tired Tongues” at Westbeth Gallery!

In between teaching at SVA for the past two weeks, David Yockel Jr. and I completed a film for the NYFA fellows exhibition “Decensortized: A Safe Space” opening THIS Friday, August 5th, from 6-9pm at Westbeth Gallery (55 Bethune Street NY,NY).

The film is made up of over five hundred Pollack Flavor Co. stickers I found by the roll in a dumpster a few years ago.  I wrote David’s poem, word by word, on each sticker, and we photographed them throughout Brooklyn over several sticky, sweaty days!  Though in hindsight I would have shot even more frames per sticker, I am super psyched with the results, and will definitely be putting the stickers to use again in the future.  If you would like to express yourself through flavor stickers this Friday, head on over the Westbeth Gallery…there will be stickers there waiting for your own hand drawn message!

It’s ALLiiiiiiiiive!

I cannot totally believe it myself, but this morning Kate Cosden and I turned the (hand-built) crank of an actual, functioning Mutoscope (sans animation for now!).  My welds are garbage, and there’s not a single set of parallel edges to be found, but I’d like us all to focus on the fact that it works!!

 

“Reel” Progress!

A big concern for this Mutoscope project was how I was going to build the reel.  Essentially, I needed hundreds of pages to wrap, Rolodex style, around a tube.  After meeting with Todd Gustavson at George Eastman House, and convincing Mark Reisch and Mike Buffalin to come along for the ride, I was in business! The above gallery is my progress on this very important step. And here’s a video of the result.

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