Press release from The DAVE School:
ORLANDO, FL – Four students from The DAVE School  (Digital Animation and Visual Effects) have been selected by the prestigious Visual Effects Society as nominees in the student category for the 10th Annual VES Awards Gala, a ceremony recognizing outstanding visual effects artistry in film, animation, television, commercials, special venues and video games.
Under the supervision of renowned VFX artist and director Lee Stringer, The DAVE School students Syrena Edmonds, Zack Heimbegner, Brian Mullen and Nathaniel Skinner spent months producing visual effects for the independent film “Renee The Movie,’’ which is in post-production.
The DAVE School, located on the backlot of Universal Studios Florida in Orlando, is one of the most advanced 3D and visual effects training institutions serving the animation and film industries. Recent graduates’ work can be seen in movies that include “Thor,” “The Green Lantern” and “Captain America.”
The 10th Annual VES Awards Gala in Los Angeles will take place Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2012. The students are among the six finalist teams nominated for Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project.
Nominees were chosen by a panel of members from The Visual Effects Society,  a nonprofit professional, honorary society dedicated to advancing the arts, sciences, and applications of visual effects. VES is comprised of a diverse group of more than 2,300 members in 26 countries.
“Just to get a nomination from the society as you aspire to enter into the industry is a great motivator,” said visual effects supervisor Lee Stringer. “When you think about it, only a handful of schools were nominated out of what is likely hundreds of student projects from around the world.”
Stinger is a frequent guest lecturer at The DAVE School and a former instructor. His body of work in film and television includes “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” “Battlestar Galactica,” “Firefly,” “Captain Scarlet,” “Star Trek: Voyager,” “Tofu the Vegan Zombie” and “Lost in Space,” among others. He spent several months last year supervising advanced students at The DAVE School in production work for “Renee the Movie.”
“Renee the Movie” is inspired by the true story of a 19-year-old Florida woman battling addiction, depression and self-injury. In a creative blend of artistic fantasy balanced with harsh reality, the movie follows Renee on her courageous journey toward recovery.
“The students knew the effects they produced for ‘Renee’ had to fit into the main production of a multimillion-dollar film. They certainly accomplished that. Obviously, the industry peers felt the same way about the caliber of the visual effects they produced,” Stringer said.
“I was particularly impressed because the students volunteered to do this project on top of their regular school load, which already is at the most advanced stage of Block 4 production just as you are preparing to graduate,” Stringer added.
“This is the first time the school has submitted a project for consideration by the Visual Effects Society, so we are especially honored that the talents of the students have been recognized at this level,” said Steve Warner, executive director of The DAVE School. “We knew from the day Lee came on board to supervise the production that the ‘Renee’ project would be a special one for The DAVE School.''
About The DAVE School (Digital Animation and Visual Effects)
The DAVE School (Digital Animation and Visual Effects School), located on the backlot of Universal Studios Florida in Sound Stage 25, includes a 35,000-square-foot facility that offers three labs, a shooting stage with a 65' x 25' green screen, and a motion capture system. The DAVE School, offering comprehensive training in 3D modeling and animation, motion graphics creation and stereoscopic 3D visual effects production, places graduates in the 3D/VFX industry for companies, including Stereo D, Pixomondo, Digital Domain and Rhythm & Hues. The DAVE School is a division of Instituto de Banca y Comercio (IBC), an EduK Group institution in Puerto Rico. For more information, go to www.daveschool.com .