The Rapidian

ArtPrize attracts film, game design live/learn/work community to Grand Rapids

Grand Rapids has been selected as the location for Snow Monster Studios, a new affordable studio/school focusing on animation, video game design and films that aims to make Michigan a hub for film and game design using Michigan people.
Underwriting support from:

Snow Monster Studios

  • New live/work affordable studio and school setting up in Grand Rapids, MI as a hub for a budding film and video game design industry
  • ArtPrize 2015 entry animated short "Snow Monster" displayed on the second floor of the B.O.B. 
  • Visit their website for more information
Artprize 2015 entry Snow Monster by David Prindle

Artprize 2015 entry Snow Monster by David Prindle /Kaitlyn Peterson - (K) Kaitlyn's Camera Photography

Artist David Prindle next to his ArtPrize entry Snow Monster

Artist David Prindle next to his ArtPrize entry Snow Monster /Kaitlyn Peterson - (K) Kaitlyn's Camera Photography

ArtPrize entry number card that folds up to make a snow monster

ArtPrize entry number card that folds up to make a snow monster /Kaitlyn Peterson - (K) Kaitlyn's Camera Photography

ArtPrize has put Grand Rapids, Mich on the art map on an international level. Now ArtPrize artist David Prindle (creator of the animated short "Snow Monster" displayed on the second floor of the B.O.B.) is a part of a project aimed at filling the void for Michigan filmmakers that the end of the government film incentives left. Their vision is to start an affordable live/work space in Grand Rapids where local talent interested in learning about animation, game design and the film industry can study and learn, while living at an affordable price in a sustainable, green space.

The ArtPrize entry "Snow Monster" stemmed from and, Prindle hopes, will bring publicity to this budding studio by the same name.

“I wasn’t really looking to make a short for ArtPrize,” said Prindle in an interview with WYCE radio programmer Jerry Wayne Newson. “I just had the name Snow Monster in my head for a while for a studio name. And then I was learning a new program and just decided to make a little snow monster to learn the program. And then I was learning another program so decided to use that same model to animate him. And from there I just ended up making a short and entered it into ArtPrize.”

The ArtPrize entry is a short animated film, about a minute and a half long, about a snow monster’s attempts to make friends, but his size scares the other arctic creatures away. However, there is a happy ending for the endearing furry creature. Prindle created everything for the piece, from each hair on the snow monster’s simple but surprisingly expressive form to the accompanying music that sets the emotional tone of the scene. He even created ArtPrize entry cards that fold up to make a small snow monster.

“I started it way back in February,” states Prindle. “It took probably a couple hundred hours.”

“The whole reason I put the short in ArtPrize wasn’t so much thinking I’m going to win any money, but I like money so if you want to go to the B.O.B. and vote for me I’ll take it,” Prindle jokes. “But really, me and some guys are starting a studio in town here and we want to do animations, and video games, and feature length movies all out of Michigan with Michigan people. And the idea is to be a teaching/doing studio so people can come and take classes in special affects or animation or film, and we’re going to do it on a model of free for low income and affordable for everyone else to kind of make it up for those who can’t afford college.”

Prindle and the other faces behind Snow Monster Studios plan to make the school self-sustaining in the long term. However, they are raising money for the initial up-front cost of building a place to house this unique idea.

“We launched an IndieGoGo, and that’s on our website,” says Prindle. "If you want to go buy a t-shirt or donate some money it will help out, and then we’ll be able to build a building." 

The short film "Snow Monster" can be viewed on the second floor of the B.O.B. in downtown Grand Rapids, or on the Snow Monster Studios website.

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