Demo Reel

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

What a Week!

Meetings and forums and gigs! Oh my! Yes, I am a bit late with this latest posting (two days by my count), but with good reason I assure you.

Last week was the first of the D.C. Motion Graphics Artists meet ups I’ve attempted to organize, and we had a pretty good turnout. We would have had far more people, but there were a few inherent mistakes I made that will not be repeated. Keep your eyes peeled for the next meet up. Next time we’re doing a different venue and giving much further ahead notice than last time around. I hope to see you there!

Once more this past week I had to deal with the reality that if you schedule two gigs on opposing weeks, that something will almost always happen at each one that will move them both into the same week. Then the job you’re doing at home will call and give you a go-ahead to proceed. That’s part of the reason my post is slightly delayed, but I will tell you this; I wouldn’t have it any other way.  As long as I’m keeping busy I’m being successful, as long as I’m successful, I’m getting paid and so long as I’m getting paid, I come ever closer to achieving the illusive “American Dream.” I would much rather be going crazy and doing eight things at once then sitting at home and waiting for my phone to ring.

This past weekend I also had another special treat. I got the opportunity to hear industry heavyweights such as Sam Ellis of 70/30 Productions, Brian Muelhaupt with Standoff Studios, and Sergio Edma of EA-Mythic along with a multitude of other creative professionals speak at the Art Institute of Washington. It was exciting to hear what they had to say and to watch some of their demos to get a taste of what other studios are doing. I also had a chance to catch up with some of my old instructors and classmates, and to see the campus again.

More fun and excitement this week I’m sure. I won’t spoil anything, so for the time being, adieu.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

D.C. Graphic Artists, Unite!

As anyone who has read my bio here can guess, I am located in Alexandria Virginia. Not a big deal, right? Well, being in the D.C. area, I’ve met many creative professionals, but I know there are more out there, and I would love to meet them! What am I proposing then, you ask? I propose a meeting of D.C.-area graphic artists in the city. I’ve put a post on to call out for people, but I would like to get some more momentum going forward.

It’s this Tuesday at 8:00 PM at “The Palace of Wonders,” in Washington D.C. It’s a great little bar in the District.

Here’s the URL for my post calling people out to come along:

Here’s the URL for the venue:

I think this will be a tremendous opportunity for ANYONE working in the industry to throw a few back and get to know their fellow creatives.

Don’t hesitate to reply to the post, drop me a line or even call me to verify any information. Anyone who wants to go should write me to swap info so we can all find each other on Tuesday.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

First Year Down

I just finished up my first year freelancing and am happy to report that I did in fact turn a profit! It’s very exhilarating to know I can do what I love and make money. Not the easiest thing in the world though. In fact, the only thing that was tougher than keeping up with the Joneses, was figuring out the tax situation at the end of the year.

Going through Turbo Tax however, Stacy and I were able to find all sorts of wonderful business deductions. Did you know that you can even write off floor space in your home office? That coupled with hardware depreciation, hardware and software purchased for the business and mileage driven for meetings and on-site engagements, made for a pretty good and full list of deductions. It was disheartening to see how much my Mac had decreased in monetary value, but encouraging to know that the machine has more than paid for itself over the past year.

If you’re just getting into business for yourself I would recommend saving all your business related receipts, logging mileage driven for business, and possibly hiring an accountant. I am fortunate that my wife enjoys doing taxes and numbers in general; otherwise I would no doubt be knocking on an accountant’s door for help.

In other news, I was just picked up to do another spot with one of my larger clients, BET. The company they’re working with is Maybelline, and they’re looking to do an illustrated spot describing how to get the fullest, curliest lashes. Production starts next week right after I finish their spot for Huggies.

So far so good, now the only trick is keeping up the pace, and knocking down projects as soon as they come up.

Oh, and if anyone would be interested in purchasing stuff from my Café Press shop, here is a link to a site featuring coupons for money off pretty much anything on the site.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Animation Caffeinated

Reel Environment

Animation Caffeinated. I am a freelance motion graphics artist based in Alexandria VA. As you might have guessed from the title of this blog, freelancing offers many surprises, and sometimes you have to pull very long hours commuting between different offices in the same day to be successful. Sometimes, you get to sit around and wait for feedback or (God forbid), work to come to you. If there’s anything that I’ve learned, it’s that work almost never “just comes to you.” You have to be persistent with your clients, and work hard to meet deadlines. You must also have a vehement work ethic and be able to network with other professionals to make contacts with potential clients, or you will not succeed. I started this blog not only to talk about my experiences in the field, but also to help guide new artist looking to make it on their own, without a company to worry about your taxes, your clients, invoicing and yes, getting new work. I’m still relatively new to the freelance game, so everyone will be able to see where I can make improvements, and learn to avoid the same mistakes.

I will be updating this blog weekly, talking about what I’m currently working on, whom I’m working with, and what’s new in my professional life. If you’d like to get a better idea of my work, I would encourage you to visit my website here: There you will find my demo reel and contact information.