'Frozen' illustrator, Disney animators headline workshop at Lipscomb in October

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Claire Keane, designer for ‘Frozen,’ ‘Tangled’ and granddaughter of ‘The Family Circus’ comic strip creator Bill Keane, among featured artists

Lipscomb Academy and Lipscomb University students can register for just $75 with student I.D.

animation workshop_articleLocal animators, illustrators and character designers will have a unique opportunity to learn from some of the top artists in the industry, including those from Disney blockbusters “Frozen” and “The Lion King,” among many others, in a workshop that is coming to Nashville for the first time.

Lipscomb University’s College of Entertainment & the Arts is hosting ProWeekend Animation and Illustration Weekend Artist Seminar, presented by TaughtByAPro.com, Oct. 25-26 in Shamblin Theatre, located on the campus. The seminar is an opportunity for artists to learn techniques, tips and tricks used by professional animators, comic artists, character designers and concept artists who have worked on well-known and popular movies. In addition to lectures, there will be a character design contest and plenty of opportunity to ask questions of the talented artists.

“We are excited to partner with TaughtByAPro.com to bring this seminar to Nashville,” said Mike Fernandez, dean of the College of Entertainment & the Arts, which was formed this fall. “Typically these workshops are offered on the West Coast and not in our part of the country. This seminar is geared toward developing artists and will give them an opportunity to interact with accomplished professionals as well as to enhance their work. Several attendees will have their work reviewed by the experts.”

Headlining the event are:

  • Tom Bancroft, 25-year veteran of the animation industry, with 11 years at Walt Disney Feature Animation, and artist-in-residence at Lipscomb’s College of Entertainment & the Arts. Bancroft was an animator for films like “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Lion King,” “Aladdin,” “Mulan” and “Brother Bear.” His popular character design instruction books, “Creating Characters with Personality” and “Character Mentor,” are among the most recognized books on designing characters for animation, video games, comic books and cartooning and are required textbooks at many art schools around the world.
  • Ruben Aquino, supervising animator at Walt Disney Animation Studios and a character animator who draws by hand.. His work includes several of Disney’s most-loved characters including adult Simba in “The Lion King,” Chief Powhatan in “Pocahontas,” Maurice in “Beauty and the Beast,” Denahi in “Brother Bear,” Captain Shang in “Mulan” and the infamous villain Ursula in “The Little Mermaid.”
  • Claire Keane, Disney concept artist, illustrator and visual-development artist who worked for many years at Walt Disney Animation Studios. While at Disney, Keane designed on movies such as “Tangled,” “Enchanted” and “Frozen.” She studied at the Ecole Superieure D’Arts Graphiques in Paris. Claire is the daughter of legendary animator Glen Keane and granddaughter of Bill Keane, creator of the comic strip “The Family Circus.”

Other well known animators, comic artists and cartoonists participating include animator John Pomeroy, comic strip writer Guy Gilchrist and TV show and video game creator/director Doug TenNapel.   

Each of the headlining artists will be lecturing and demonstrating their craft for attendees on Saturday. Those interested in entering the character design contest must register at least one week in advance.

“I am excited about having this seminar on Lipscomb’s campus especially as it relates to my new role as artist-in-residence here,” said Bancroft. “This is a unique opportunity for Nashville as the professional artists that have moved here are trying to make this a new mecca for animation. The industry has been quietly growing and expanding in Nashville. It’s fast becoming known as an artistically creative town –building on the strong foundation of music we already have. I am glad to see Nashville grow in this new direction – with animation, app and video game development.”

Registration is $150 (increases to $175 after Oct. 10). Lipscomb Academy and Lipscomb University students may register for only $75, valid Lipscomb student I.D. required. Registration includes all sessions on Saturday; lunch is not included. A VIP dinner featuring visiting pros along with other surprise guests kicks off the seminar on Friday, Oct. 24. Tickets to the dinner are $99 (in addition to the seminar registration fee). Seating is limited.

For more information or to register visit taughtbyapro.com/proweekend.