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Art Institute of Washington's You Be the Chemist Series Wins Awards

In 2004 students in the Media Arts & Animation program at The Art Institute of Washington, a branch of The Art Institute of Atlanta, participated in an eight month production to create a series of 3D animations for the Chemical Educational Foundation (CEF). The "You Be the Chemist" (YBTC) series included six 5-minute modules on a variety of chemistry topics aimed at students in both elementary and middle schools.

On March 22, 2005 The Art Institute of Washington was notified that it had won three Telly Awards for the "YBTC" animation series during the 26th Annual Telly Awards. A Silver Telly was won in the Animation category, and two Bronze Tellys were awarded for being finalists in the categories of Education and Multimedia.

Through partnership efforts developed by director of career services, Carrie Rubin, CEF entered into an agreement with The Art Institute of Washington in late 2003. The final series was delivered in August 2004, just in time to be showcased at The Art Institutes International booth at SIGGRAPH in Los Angeles, California. "You Be the Chemist" was produced by Christopher Reese and additional supervision was provided by Alex Buffalo. Nearly a dozen student animators were involved along with a dozen other students who provided character voices, foley and sound recording, nonlinear editing, scriptwriting, storyboarding, and much more. CEF has produced 10,000 copies of the animation series and have been distributing it to school districts around the country.

The Art Institute of Washington students and faculty credited for work on the YBTC project are as followed:

Producer and director: Christopher ReeseTechnical director: Sergio Edma; Kelvin voice: Nick VakaNewton voice: Keith KiskaResearch: Claire PetersonConcept art: Wendy Johnson, Thomas La, Reginald Soriano, Claire Peterson, Kunthearo VeunStoryboard artists: Kunthearo Veun, Reginald Soriano, Elizabeth Staley, James Allen McFaddenCharacter design: Peter HeydtAnimation supervisors: Alex Buffalo, Christopher ReeseCharacter modeling: Sergio Edma; Matthew KeithEnvironment modeling: Claire Peterson, Wendy JohnsonProperties modeling: Thomas La, Reginald SorianoAnimators: Aaron Dubois, Sergio Edma, Alex Erchov, Matthew Keith, Thomas La, Dan Mafkinsky, Cindy Marazzi, Gerardo Ramirez, Reginald SorianoLead technical animator: Sergio EdmaEnvironment Lighting, Dan Mafkinsky; Character lighting: Gerardo RamirezEditor: Christopher ReeseProduction coordinators: Wendy Johnson, Thomas LaRender coordinators: Wendy Johnson, Gerardo RamirezOffline editing coordinator: Claire PetersonAudio voiceover recording: Ian PullensMusic composer: Ian PullensFoley artists/editors: Brandon Evans, Toan VongAudio production assistance: Elisse Hamu, Wendy JohnsonDVD design and authoring: Christopher Reese

The Telly Awards is a national and international competition and receives more than 10,000 entries annually from all 50 states and many foreign countries. Telly winners are awarded a Silver Telly statuette, the highest honor. Finalists are awarded a Bronze Telly statuette.

The Art Institute of Washington, a branch of The Art Institute of Atlanta, is one of The Art Institutes (, with 31 education institutions located throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion, and culinary professionals. The parent company of The Art Institutes, Education Management Corp. ( is among the largest providers of private post-secondary education in North America, based on student enrollment and revenue.

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Rick DeMott
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