Previous Industry Giants




Creating today’s entertainment may seem like mystical otherworld technology, but this year we look behing the veil to talk with the shamen that create todays top games, movies, and commercials. Industry Giants 2010: Creative Alchemy, Visual Effects, Animation and Game Forum features ten industry professionals. 


The ninth annual event takes place Saturday, June 12 and Sunday, June 13, 2010 at the SMU Hughes-Trigg Student Center.  It’s open to the public, students and industry professionals.



Shawn Dunn

Layout Supervisor, Weta Digital


Shawn Dunn has over 18 years of CG experience.  He has most recently worked for almost  4 years on James Cameron's Avatar.  Shawn has been with Weta Digital since 2003 when he worked on Return of the King followed by King Kong as the Animation Technical Supervisor.  Prior to Weta Digital he worked for Alias|Wavefront, responsible for the development and delivery of educational material for Maya users.


Stephan Martiniere 

Art Director, id Software


Stephan Martiniere is an internationally acclaimed Science Fiction and Fantasy artist. In the past 20 years he has become known for his talent, versatility and imagination in every entertainment field including feature films, animation, video games, theme parks, editorials and book covers. Stephan Martiniere has worked on movies such as “The Fifth Element”, “Star Trek”, “Knowing” “I, Robot”, “Star Wars Episodes 2 and 3”, “Virus”, “Red Planet”, “The Astronaut’s Wife”, “Sphere”, “Titan A.E” and “Time Machine”. Stephan was also the visual design director responsible for the games “URU, Ages Beyond Myst”, “URU, The path of the Shell” and “Myst 5”. He worked several years as Visual design Director for the game Stranglehold in Chicago for Midway games and later as Creative Visual Director supporting the visual contents for several other games including Area 51, Blitz, Ballers, MK vs DC and several un-announced titles . Stephan Martiniere is the recipient of numerous awards including the Hugo and two Chesley awards, two silver and a gold "Spectrum" Award, four Master and twelve Excellence “Expose” Awards, the Thea award, two BSFA Awards and the Seattle Show Award. In 2006 Stephan received the Grand Master “Expose” Award. Stephan Martiniere is currently Art Directing “Rage” for ID software and is an advisory board member of the CG society.

  Joseph Gilland
2D Effects Animator

In this inspirational presentation, based on Joseph Gilland’s ground-breaking book about understanding traditional special effects animation principles, the author brings a fresh perspective to understanding the underlying energy behind elemental special effects such as fire, water, smoke, explosions and magic. Drawing on a life-long mission to capture the essential energy of the elements, Joseph urges his workshop participants to explore the natural world around them and inside them, to tap into the true nature of the elements and thus bring fresh, dyamic energy to the visual effects that they create regardless of the medium.

Traditional and digital artists, technical directors and computer programmers alike, will discover a fresh new way to approach visual effects animation.


Jeffrey Dates

CG/VFX Supervisor, The Mill NY


Jeffrey Dates has been immersed in production for nearly 15 years. He recently joined The Mill NY as a CG/VFX Supervisor. He brings a wealth of experience to The Mill as Character Animator, Creative Director, Animation Director, Motion Designer and Production Artist, encompassing the Features, Commercials and Gaming industries.
Dates began his career in 1997 at ReelFX, Dallas, where he worked his way up to Animation Director. His projects there included VFX for Robert Rodriquez’s Sky Kids 2, a GI Joe campaign for Hasbro, and the William Joyce-themed short film, "Man in the Moon".
In 2002, Dates co-directed (with Lee Lanier) the acclaimed "Day Off The Dead". The comedic animated short played over 50 film festivals, taking Grand Prize at SCTV Shortcuts Festival, Best Animation at Screamfest L.A., and Best Animated Film at the Memphis Film Festival, to note a few highlights.

The following year, Dates joined Janimation as Creative Director and Project Lead. During his time at the Dallas-based animation studio, he re-teamed with Robert Rodriquez on Spy Kids 3-D, directed the game trailer for John Woo’s Stranglehold, and directed “I Want To Hold Your Hand” a CG Music Video for The Smithereens. He also worked on game projects for titles such as Age of Empires, The Suffering, Area 51, Civilization and I-Ninja.
Dates left the Lone Star State for the Big Apple in 2007, after landing a job as CG/VFX Supervisor for Mass Market, the VFX brand to renowned live-action/animation collective, Psyop. During his tenure there, Dates worked on AICP honoree, Guinness “Dot”, as well as spots for Travelers, Infiniti, 7Up, HP, and Sprint.
Dates attended Sam Houston State University. He’s partial to Personal Creative Projects, Sailing and Mountain Biking.
For more, check out his glitzy site:


Rita Street

President, Radar Cartoons
  Rita Street is the president of Radar Cartoons, a producer’s representation firm specializing in the development and sales of original animation content. Radar has placed numerous shows into development including Ruby Gloom for YTV and Nelvana, Frankenstein’s Cat for the BBC, France 3 and McKinnon & Saunders, and Hero: 108 for Gamania Digital Entertainment, Mike Young Productions and Cartoon Network Europe. Rita is working on her first animated short, Mock ‘n Boyd with Dainty Productions. Additional credits include work as publisher of Animation Magazine, editor of Film & Video Magazine and author of the Rockport Publisher hardback, Computer Animation: A Whole New World. Rita is the founder of the international non-profit organization, Women in Animation.

David Schaub
Animation Director, Sony Pictures Imageworks

  David Schaub, animation director at Sony Pictures Imageworks, has worked in the animation and visual effects industry for more than 15 years.  Recently, Schaub served as the animation supervisor on I Am Legend where he was responsible for overseeing all of the animated elements in the film. Previously, he served as animation director on Academy Award-nominated Surf's Up, Sony Pictures Animation’s second all-CG feature-length animated film. The film also received two ANNIE awards, and was nominated for four VES awards. Other credits include The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, The Polar Express, Stuart Little, Stuart Little 2, Evolution, Cast Away, Hollow Man, and Patch Adams. Schaub has received two Accolade Awards as well as nominations by the American Film Institute and the Annual DVD Awards.  He has presented his work through numerous publications and conferences around the world.




Dan Kuenster

iStation, Storyboarding


Dan Kuenster has thirty years experience in the animation industry including positions at Disney and Don Bluth Studios. At Walt Disney Studios, he trained under the guidance of Eric Larson, one of the renowned “Nine Old Men”. Mr. Kuenster then joined Don Bluth Studios, where he was instrumental in a number of animated feature films, including The Secret of NIMH, An American Tail, The Land Before Time, and co-directed All Dogs Go To Heaven. Mr. Kuenster won an Emmy for the PBS show “Jakers” for individual achievement in story boarding.

Mr. Kuenster is currently the Executive Vice President of Creative Services at where he uses his creativity for interactive education.

  Course Description

Johan  Klingler

Instructor, Art Institute of Dallas

Johan Klingler has degrees/certificates from CALARTs, The Joe Kubert School of Cartooning and Graphic Design, Michigan State University and The University of Southern California and has attended 7 additional schools during his career and is always building his knowledge.   He is earning a masters at Florida Atlantic University.    He began his career as an illustrator progressing to work at DC and Marvel comics as a ghost inker.  He became an artist for feature animated films doing character clean-up, animation, layout, storyboarding, concept art and development.  He then developed a career as an Art Director and Director over 21 productions.   Soon after becoming a live action Film Director.    He then worked on video games for Xbox, PS2 and Xbox 360 as an Art Director.  Johan has worked for companies like Disney, Warner Brothers, Universal, and Kroyer films to name a few on 54 Feature Productions, 269 Commercials and 7 Video Games.    Johan has awards in sequential story and storyboarding by Comico, The Disney Higher Education Scholarship, A Creative Excellence award, an Outstanding Concept/Development award, An outstanding CG Cinematography award  and the Illustrator’s award of Roxbury.   Johan and his wife Norma founded and directed the School of Media Arts, a magnet program, for a decade in Burbank, California to pull gang kids off the street and train them to be artists for film.  A student of such mentors as Chuck Jones, Greg Hildebrandt, Joel Zwick and others, Johan Klingler never forgets where he’s gained his experience, having taught for 14 years, he is currently passing his knowledge onto students at The Art Institute of Dallas.



Norma Klingler
Art Institute of Dallas

 Norma Klingler is a graduate of the California Institute of the Arts and began her career in the commercial industry of New York.   She became an artist for feature animated films doing character clean-up, animation, storyboarding, concept art and Character Design.   She started as a children’s book illustrator and has become a prominent Character Designer and Storyboard Artist.   She is earning a masters at Florida Atlantic University.       Chuck Jones stated she was his protégé in style of drawing when he gave his talk at The Art Institute of Southern California.  She earned an Emmy in most outstanding Storyboarding in the Industry after studying storyboarding from Johan Klingler, her husband.  She and her husband founded and Directed the School of Media Arts, a magnet program, for a decade in Burbank, California to pull gang kids off the street and train them to be artists for film.    Norma has worked for companies like Disney, Warner Brothers, Universal, Nickleodeon, Omation, and Kroyer films to name a few.   She is currently passing her knowledge onto students at The Art Institute of Dallas.

    Course Description



Paul Gaboury

3D Appliaction Engineer, Pixologic

  Paul Gaboury is Pixologic’s 3D Application Engineer who works with several studios such as Legacy Effects, Disney Animation, Bad Robot, etc on enhancing their digital sculpting pipeline using the leading industry application ZBrush. He is also involved with the development of ZBrush and working with artists around the world offering support. As part of the Pixologic team Paul will travel to various studios and schools giving demos on ZBrush to highlight the various new tools in ZBrush. Paul graduated with a BFA from the University of Bowling Green and was an extension student at Gnomon School of Visual Effects.
    Course Description



Brad Clark



An award winning artist and animator, Brad Clark has worked on a wide range of projects; from modeling and rigging for television and video games to editing motion capture for Gollum in “The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.” while at Weta Digital. 

A previous two time Autodesk Master Class instructor including co-authoring with Chad Moore,  the only class dedicated to custom character rigging with Motionbuilder- The Character Animator Toolkit for Motion Builder. Brad has twice been an instructor for the incredible workshops and was lead author of “Inspired 3D Advanced Rigging and Deformations” with John Hood, and Joe Harkins. Most recently, Brad has provided custom training and consulting for Bungie, Disney Junction Point Studios and Reel FX on Motionbuilder, Maya and 3ds Max.

    Course Description


  Brad Gabe


Over much of his career in animation, Bradley Gabe has been an active member of the CG community helping to develop technical approaches to CG production via consulting, and the publication of tutorials online as well as in trade magazines. He also teaches courses, seminars, and Master Classes at Siggraph and other venues.
Bradley's technical skills have been honed over the years working on high-end digital effects in commercial and feature film productions at Stan Winston Studio, ILM, and Quiet Man.
Bradley is currently the Senior Technical Animator at Janimation, Inc., an award winning animation and motion graphics production studio in Dallas, Texas, which focuses mostly on television commercials and game cinematics.


"Interactive Building a Crowd Simulation in Softimage ICE"

    Course Description
  Mary Morgan
Voice Over for Animation
With dreams of becoming a movie star, Mary started her career by going to acting classes and hiring various acting coaches. As she spent more time improving her extensive acting skills, one piece of advice she kept getting was that she'd be great for voice acting. Hesitant at first, Mary finally decided to give voice acting a shot. Some voiceover coaches she's trained with include Bruce Carey, Joyce Castellanos, Lani Minella, and Richard Horvitz, to name a few. Mary has done voiceovers for tv commercials and animated series, video games (from handheld devices to PC games), more than 30 titles with FUNimation Entertainment and Okatron 5000, and much more.
    Course Description
  Michael Mentler
Society of Figurative Arts
Michael studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Layton School of Art in Milwaukee and Washington University in Saint Louis, where he taught figure drawing and design.

Michael's work is in many public and private collections including:

  • The Pulitzer Collection
  • The Pearson Foundation
  • The Steinberg
  • The Mead Library

Course  Description

The Society of Figurative Arts



  Dr. Sketchy
Burlesque Anti-Art School
In normal life classes, silent students sit in a silent room and draw a bored, oft-uninteresting model. In Dr. Sketchy's we've got scandalous performers as models. We've got ridiculous art contests (best incorporation of a woodland animal? Best imagined costume?), comedic skits good music and flashy prizes. We've got a selection of posh beverages - alcoholic and not - available to buy.

At Dr. Sketchy's, we don't care if you picked up a pad yesterday or 50 years ago. Come to drink or to draw. We're happy to have you.


Course Description

Dr Sketchy Blog