The 2015 Envision Film Festival, held March 5 –7, 2015, was another tremendous success for Taylor University and its Film & Media Production program. The festival kicked off on March 5 with an evening that featured student work from three upper division classes and a live Skype with the Taylor students studying in Los Angeles. A full day of workshops with experienced industry professionals (who also happened to be Taylor graduates) occurred March 6.
Timothy Naylor (’94) took students and guests behind the scenes of Hollywood blockbusters to show how visual effects enhance movie storytelling. Along with creating Davy Jones’ beard for “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest,” Naylor is currently a co-founder of Creature Art & Mechanics Digital (CAMd), where he provides animation and creature design for high quality entertainment. He first launched his career with Industrial Light & Magic, where he worked on films such as the second and third episodes of “Star Wars,” “Transformers” and “Rango.” Naylor had much to say about how to contribute to the industry as a Christian.
Aric Hartvig (’02) led students through workshops explaining the unique elements of documentary shooting and the keys to building a successful career in media. An Emmy award-winning producer, videographer and editor for WFYI-PBS Indianapolis, Hartvig is known for his entertaining human interest stories and community reporting. A short piece he shot and narrated about his father’s journey to the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C., was especially moving.
After other informative workshops that showed off Taylor’s state-of-the-art RED Dragon cameras and Steadicam demonstrations, March 6 capped off with an evening screening and awards presentation for films by Taylor filmmakers and the high school top award winner. Sophomore Andrew Davis won Best Picture with “Why Leah Left,” a unique look at mental illness. The Audience voted for “Little Dreams,” and a new Alumni Choice Award was given to “Burnout.” Additional events for high school students were held on March 7, including a tour of Taylor’s media communication program and a screening of the best of the high school films.