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Highlights from my professional portfolio

Joshua Tree National Park: Geology Film

An excerpt of the final film

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: Joshua Tree National Park / Twenty-Nine Palms, CA
Project: This animated video was created for the National Park Service to welcome visitors to the Joshua Tree National Park. The video explains the unique geography of the park. Joshua Tree happens to be my favorite place on earth, so I was beyond excited to do this animation. It also gave me a reason to visit one more time!
Role: Lead animator

Some notes:

I never realized how reliant most educational videos are on narration. We could only use onscreen text in this video, which was extremely challenging given the hard science we were tasked to present. The story was simplified with each revision until we found the perfect balance of scientific content and a fun, engaging design.

This animation was done entirely in After Effects. It forced me to learn Shape Layers, a feature I’ve gone great lengths to avoid using.

And here’s a photo of my friends and I on our pilgrimage to Joshua Tree to see the installation. I recommend a visit. Best sunsets and rises you’ll ever see!

/Posted by: mellti5

National Music Centre: Soundscapes Stage

Video coming soon!

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: National Music Centre / Calgary, AB
Project: Soundscapes Stage
Role: Animator

“Multiple projectors, full-height printed graphics and a multi-channel sound system immerse visitors in music and landscapes that are uniquely Canadian. The 12-minute continuously looping program creates an ever-changing collage of projected and printed elements taken from Canada’s landscapes synched to an original mash-up of 30 songs.”

– Excerpt from the RLMG project page

/Posted by: mellti5

Museum of Fine Arts Boston: Gund Gallery Video Wall

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston / Boston, MA
Project: A giant 16-screen presentation welcomes visitors to the Gund Gallery. As part of the RLMG team, I have worked on five of these multiscreen shows over the course of three years.
Role: Lead animator

Hokusai, Spring 2015

“If Hokusai (1760-1849) had been alive today, we think he would have been an animator: the strength of his graphic design, his sense of humor, his interest in depth and dimension and motion, all point in this direction. These qualities also make Hokusai’s work feel contemporary or, to put it another way, timeless. RLMG’s aesthetic approach in this piece attempts to express Hokusai’s ingenuity in a manner that speaks directly to today’s audience. The motion is playful and energetic; the music, performed on the ancient shamisen in a contemporary style, is a surprising fusion of old and new.”

– Excerpt from the RLMG website

Class Distinctions, Fall 2015

“In addition to introducing the themes of the exhibit, the video for Class Distinctions: Dutch Painting in the Age of Rembrandt and Vermeer had some narrative work to do. The video needed to identify the social classes as distinct types, but also intermingling. So we chose to cluster the images of each class, beginning with the upper class, then the mercantile class, then the working class — and finally, at the end, all of the classes together.”

– Excerpt from the RLMG website

Megacities Asia, Spring 2016

For the Megacities show, RLMG produced a short film highlighting the work of several contemporary sculptural artists. Where previous MFA projects focused on single classical artists, the unique challenge this time was balancing the focus between the 11 living artists, the 5 Asian cities they call home, and their many featured sculptures.

William Merritt Chase, Fall 2016

“Photography is a central element in RLMG’s William Merritt Chase video, especially photographs of his family and his elaborate studio spaces. The video journeys back and forth between interior spaces – where children and adults play – to exterior locations such as the seashore, parks, gardens and other places of outdoor leisure. Animated painting effects provide transitions between Chase’s artworks and the documentary photography.”

– Excerpt from the RLMG website

/Posted by: mellti5

MNA: Documentary

Company: Freelance
Client: Massachusetts Nurses Association (MNA)
Project: Created a motion graphics treatment for a 13-minute documentary. Most of the content is archival material (photos and newspaper clippings) so it was essential to develop a visual language that was both engaging and consistent throughout.
Role: Lead animator

/Posted by: mellti5

ASRT: Six-Screen Show

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: American Society of Radiologic Technologists
Project: Art of the Image: a twelve minute, six-screen, looping video that showcases the cultural side of medical imaging. Using motion-graphic techniques, it combines artist-quality medical images, works of art inspired by medical imaging, and cultural references to the profession in order to create an atmospheric background for the museum’s central space
Role: Lead animator

Visit the RLMG project page for more info

/Posted by: mellti5

Canadian Museum of Immigration: Gateway Video

An excerpt of the final film

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 / Halifax, NS
Project: A looping video highlighting images of immigration throughout Canada’s history. This show relied heavily on advanced 2.5-D techniques
Role: Lead animator

This show single-handedly made me a master of 2.5D.

2.5D is the effect of cutting up a 2D image and arranging it in 3D space. It instantly adds drama to any photo… at the cost of a TON of hours of work. I took my photoshop skills to a whole new level with this one, relying heavily on the little-known Vanishing Point feature and its cross compatibility with After Effects. Here’s a great tutorial if you aren’t familiar with the feature.

/Posted by: mellti5

butv10: 2014 Midterm Election Coverage

Show Open

Company: Freelance
Client: Boston University’s butv10
Project: A full graphics package for BU’s online and television coverage of the 2014 Midterm Elections.
Role: Lead animator

To the left are some examples of the chyron graphic templates I created for the programming:

/Posted by: mellti5

National Postal Museum: Stamp Arch + Lobby Wall

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: Smithsonian National Postal Museum / Washington DC
Project: on 60 screens and lightboxes arched across the doorway, the wonder of the World of Stamps is revealed in a 3-minute, looping animation
Role: Motion graphics team member

Click here to see the video
Visit the RLMG project page for more info

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: Smithsonian National Postal Museum / Washington DC
Project: Upon entering the elegant historic lobby, visitors encounter RLMG’s panoramic overview program that dramatizes the sweep of postal history in a dramatic setting: four large video walls positioned across an 84-foot span.
Role: Motion graphics team member

Click here to see the video
Visit the RLMG project page for more info

/Posted by: mellti5

Discovery Park of America: Earthquake film

A breakdown video of the film’s climactic final earthquake

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: Discovery Park of America / Union City, TN
Project: A 270-degree wraparound film tells the story of the earthquakes that shaped modern Tennessee. The audience stands on a shake plate that’s synced to the earthquakes in the film.
Role: Lead animator

/Posted by: mellti5

Baltimore Aquarium: Giant Porthole Videos

Company: Richard Lewis Media Group
Client: National Aquarium of Baltimore, Maryland
Project: While Black Tip Reef was under construction for six months, visitors were delighted by a virtual imagining of the scene below. We created three video projections, each 15ft in diameter, that simulated a top-down view of the aquatic tank. After a few minutes of the animals swimming normally, they would sporadically break out into a choreographed dance.
Role: Lead animator

A video breakdown of the effects

Before the tanks were closed for construction, we were allowed to film the various animals that live there. We collected top-down footage of over a dozen animals, including Calypso, the aquarium’s famous 3-flipper sea turtle. We used After Effects to rotoscope each animal and create a seemless swimming loop. This was especially challenging for the late addition of a scuba diver, whom the client wanted to swim with and feed Calypso. Once we had a full loop for each character, I could easily animate their path through the water.

Check out the breakdown video above for a better understanding of the process.

/Posted by: mellti5

Johnny Cupcakes – Halloween Short Films

Company: Freelance
Client: Johnny Cupcakes
Project: To celebrate the release of their Halloween t-shirt line, local entrepreneur Johnny Cupcakes wanted to create four unique video promos. These were insanely fun and clever, and allowed me to work with four amazing teams of artists.
Role: Editor and VFX artist

/Posted by: mellti5