Ben Halstead is an animator in the greater Los Angeles area with experience in 3D, 2D digital, and 2D traditional animation, and motion graphics. He worked as the head of animation for CADcorporation from 2006 to 2008 on an experimental interactive virtual campus called Vmerse, commissioned by the University of Michigan Office of Undergraduate Admissions. During this time he oversaw the work of other animators, and modeled, textured, and rigged several animated bodies used in the final product.
Ben graduated in the spring of 2011 with a BFA in Entertainment Arts from the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Michigan, with a focus in Character Animation. He also studied various subjects at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor from 2002 to 2008, including film and musical performance for tenor trombone. His awards include the Stratton Prize Scholarship in 2011 for his short film, "The Nature of Craenids," which is currently in development, and “Best Animated Film” for the 2005 Lightworks Film Festival. He has written and performed for various local bands in his spare time, and has coded and maintained websites including his online portfolio, halsteadart.com.
As an animator I find myself drawn to the exploration of movement in the human figure. At an early age I would draw miniature flipbooks in the corners of my school notebooks. I also have a love for complex, mature storylines that are thought-provoking and touch upon important philosophical or ethical points of view. Bringing characters to life with rich personalities in an original way is my singular mission as an animator.
My education in studying and working with live-action film, in combination with my experience in drawing comics and graphic novels, has encouraged me to seek a dynamic visual style for my shot compositions, and to explore various genres in my screenwriting; not only comedy but also horror, romance, and action. I believe that emotions such as fear and love are largely unexplored in the realm of animation, and audiences are ready for more.
While I have always been fond of drawing and story development, another curious hobby I picked up along the way is the internet. I am fascinated by the myriad possibilities of the worldwide web, and have dabbled in web coding and website development from time to time. To somehow combine the internet with my work is an intriguing and exciting idea to me. I believe the web will be the next great delivery medium for full-length features and series.
Ultimately, I hope to make a name for myself as someone who contributed something new and refreshing to the art of animation.
Copyright 2011 Ben Halstead