Miami International University of Art & Design to Host 2012 MIA Animation Conference, October 20 and 21, 2012

MIAMI, FL — MAY 2, 2012 – The Miami International University of Art & Design will be the site of the 2012 MIA Animation Conference on October 20 and 21, in Miami (FL). The industry conference, now in its third year (formerly called Animiami), focuses on computer animation, gaming, visual effects and motion graphics, film, web design and the visual arts. Programs include world-renowned industry speakers and master classes. In addition, there will be software demonstrations and panel discussions, including several on new technologies. In conjunction with the conference, the MIA Animation Festival will be held on October 20 at the Miami Beach Cinematheque at Historic Hall. The featured films will be the result of a juried selection by industry judges.

Featured speakers include:

Conrad Montgomery, creative executive for the Cartoon network, who is currently working on animated comedies such as Adventure Time, Regular Show, and Mad while developing new projects for the studio.

Drew Tolman has worked with four major studios (Fox, Disney, Universal and Warner Bros.) in development and production in 2D and 3D animation, and VFX/Live Action. Currently she is post-production supervisor for the Walt Disney Company.

Chris Bailey most recently worked as a consultant to Blue Sky Studios and FOX, where he has had a longstanding relationship as animation supervisor on such FOX hits as Alvin & the Chipmunks (1 & 2), X-Men 2, Eragon, Garfield (1 & 2) and Fat Albert” His animation work includes The Little Mermaid and The Lion King.

Mark Anthony Austin has been the lead in some of the major animation power houses including Industrial Light and Magic, Walt Disney, and Sony Imageworks. Currently head of animation for The Third Floor, Inc., one of the world’s leading previsualization companies, he work alongside many of the industry’s top directors including Steven Spielberg and George Lucas.

Leah Hoyer went from being an attorney to animation. After earning an MFA at UCLA’s animation workshop, she began working at Disney Television Animation where, for 15 years, she was director of development for Disney Channel’s Animated Series.

Bill Buckley, animator and artist in the video game industry, has provided story art and animation on popular titles for companies such as THQ, Disney Interactive, Limbic, SCEA, and most recently Activision.

Jay Hathaway, senior 3D character animator for Blizzard Entertainment, has also worked with Film Roman and MSH Entertainment. His experience at Blizzard spans development teams from Diablo II, WarCraft III, WoW and StarCraft II to DotA.

“The MIA Animation Conference has been designed to be a forum for active networking and practical information exchange with a strong commitment and emphasis on education and developing and nourishing new talent,” said Gema Naredo, department chair, Computer Animation, Visual Effects & Motion Graphics, and Web Design & Interactive Media, at Miami International University of Art & Design. “The conference focuses on the industry’s real expectations and needs, as well as the competencies required of new professionals. Our goal is to increase the dialogue among students, educational institutions and the animation industry.”

For more information on MIA Animation Conference and Festival including the event schedule, speaker bios, registration and event sponsorship, please go to

Miami International University of Art & Design is located at 1501 Biscayne Boulevard, Suite 100, Miami, FL 33132. For more information, visit or call 800.225.9023.