GET ready for 11 days of scenes, special effects, and storyboards! Regina Karis has all the details about the Melbourne International Animation Festival and tells you how you can win passes to the festival.
The Melbourne International Animation Festival (MIAF) is one of Melbourne’s largest screen culture events as well as one of the world’s largest animation festival.
Running from June 20 through to June 30, the festival this year will feature more than 400 animated works selected from 2,300 entries across 30 countries all around the world.
Launched in 2000 by founders Malcolm Turner, Nag Vladermesky and Susi Allender, MIAF continues to enchant audiences with the imagination one can only find in animation.
“We want people to walk away having seen some really good computer/puppet/hand-drawn animation.”
When asked about the selection process for the animated works featured in the festival, MIAF executive director Malcolm Turner say it’s about looking for the best use of properties in animation.
“(We look for) films that can really be expressed by tools only animation has (to offer such as) technique and style – things that live action can’t do. We want people to walk away having seen some really good computer/puppet/hand-drawn animation.”
MIAF 2013 will offer attendees the chance to catch more than 40 programs, though determining which of the 40 to see may be a challenge.
This year, some of MIAF’s major events include a film preservation fundraiser, a forum discussing the innovations behind 3D animation, as well as the festival’s first annual conference.
Gods & Monsters: Saving Grendel
Thursday, June 27 and Sunday, June 30
A fundraising screening for the groundbreaking animated film, Grendel Grendel Grendel (1981) by the father of Australian animation Alex Stitt, will be presented. The animated work will be shown in its original 35mm print for the very first time in Australia. All proceeds from the fundraising screening of Grendel Grendel Grendel go directly towards the digital preservation of the never-screened-before 35mm print of the animation. Donations are made through the Grendel Fund.
In addition to the screening of Grendel Grendel Grendel, MIAF will also screen Abracadabra (1983), Stitt’s stereoscopic 3D animated work. Abracadabra has never been publicly screened before in Australia as well, making its screening in MIAF a not-to-be-missed experience. Attendants of the Abracadabra screening will receive a souvenir pair of the uniquely engineered glasses called Abragoggles needed to watch Abracadabra in the format it was intended to be seen.
Friday, June 21 – Saturday, June 22
As MIAF’s first ever annual conference, RENDER gives visitors the chance to delve deeper into a variety of topics and issues related to the art of contemporary animation in discussions led by local and international creative experts and academics.
Guest speakers include Melbourne’s own illustrator and cartoonist Oslo Davis, Auckland University of Technology’s Head in Digital Design John Piper, and Koji Yamamura, master Japanese animator, short film producer, and children’s books illustrator.
Monday, June 24 – Friday, June 28
Focusing on computer-generated (CG) animation from five different angles, MIAF’Ss CG Symposium program brings together expert speakers, practitioners, and leaders to share their knowledge and experiences with CG animation.
One of these experts, Executive Professor of Creative Industries at Northeastern University in Boston and past SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival Chair Terrence Masson, will introduce snapshots of brand new CG animation, visual effects (VFX) and other high concept music videos to visitors.
Furthermore, on the last night of the Symposium, Estonian 3D artist and animator Martinus Klemet will be present to discuss 3D animation in a panel that will explore the magical worlds that are dreamt up by 3D animation.
In addition to these major events, other highlights that may be particularly noteworthy for students and graduates include the following:
- The Best of the Next: International Graduate Animation program where graduation reels from more than 60 animation and film schools around the world will be screened. At this program, you’ll be able to catch some of the brightest minds working to create a future of animated filmmaking.
- The Animation 101 Forums – here, independent animation filmmakers will shed light on their creative processes. Speakers include Canadian indie animator Patrick Jenkins, horror-gothic enthusiast Isabel Peppard, and Australia’s own animation production The Lampshade Collective.
- The Careers in Animation Forum, hosted by higher education institute, Holmesglen, will give the audience an opportunity to discuss with established industry panelists about job opportunities, realistic expectations, where students/graduates can specialise in, overseas work and how to get started.
Providing a great environment for students and graduates to cultivate their craft, Mr Turner says the festival program has taken consideration into the future of the animation industry.
When asked for tips on getting started in the Australian animation industry, he advises students to reflect on their strengths and weaknesses.
“What’s important is simply to persist—just keep going, and don’t stop.”
“Make sure you’re clear about what you’re good at and what you’re bad at. Understand what it is that you want to do,” he says.
“You got to keep applying for work and look at all the corners. Build networks. Look at internships and studios but make sure you’re not being exploited. What’s important is simply to persist—just keep going, and don’t stop.”
Double Pass Giveaway
Those keen to get further insight into the animation process will not want to miss out on this experience. Luckily for Meld readers, we are giving away two double passes to any individual sessions screening across the festival! Enter the giveaway below!
The Melbourne International Animation Festival will start on June 20 and finish on June 30, at ACMI, Federation square. For ticket and pass conditions, the full program, and more information on the festival, visit the official Melbourne International Animation Festival 2013 website.