On May 30th, CMA partnered with Women in Animation for an evening with the Animation Project. Hosted at the School of Visual Arts, The Animation Project (TAP) brought a panel of advisors and students to discuss how young women define themselves in the animation world, and how they see themselves carving out their future in the industry.
TAP Founder and Executive Director, Brian Austin, kicked off the discussion by introducing the program to the mixed audience of TAP supporters and industry patrons. Austin shared how TAP’s motto of “transformation through technology”, along with the program’s structure for group learning, has led to an overflowing success with young people in the New York City area. TAP has made great strides in building a foundation based on nurturing the personal and professional growth of middle and high school students through their partnered animator and therapist model. This model sets up an animator to lead a group in software and production instruction, while a therapist is placed with the same group to prompt story content, emotional intelligence, and support group dynamics. This model has helped to shape participant’s experiences by developing both interpersonal and career skills. Outside of their animation group models, TAP also has intern and placement programs that continue to see students throughout their educational journey. In addition to hands-on experience, students take part in talks with industry speakers from FOX, Blue Sky, and Pixar. TAP has also helped to nurture students’ financial goals by helping them open their first bank accounts, and bringing in TD Bank to talk about financial responsibility.
The night continued with a viewing of TAP alumni videos “Uprooted” and “Raise The Age”, which both got a round of applause from the audience. Then, Austin was joined by seven young ladies from the TAP program, who discussed their experiences as women starting out in animation as TAP participants. The event ended with a Q&A with the audience. To learn more about The Animation Project, please visit: http://theanimationproject.org/