Behind the Frames: Student Works from the UCF School of Visual Arts and Design

Behind the Frames presents artwork from students in the Character Animation Track BFA and Animation and Visual Effects Track MFA

The works presented are seldom exhibited preproduction and production images created for the development of graduate and undergraduate animated films produced at the University of Central Florida’s School of Visual Arts and Design. Displayed here are character design sheets, production stills, background paintings and concept sketches from recently released and current projects.

Behind the Frames will be on display in Orlando Science Center's Fusion: A STEAM Gallery on Level 3 from August 28 through November 14, 2021.

Behind the Frames Exhibit Q&A Completed By UCF Lecturer of Animation Jo Anne Adams

What inspired you to curate the pieces in this exhibition?

As a faculty member, I am deeply inspired by the talent our students display and their passion for their medium. Few people understand the scope of artistic development necessary for creation of an animated production. This exhibit offers an opportunity for appreciation of the artistic and technical layers involved in the production process.

What do you hope guests will take away from this exhibition?

I hope to inspire young artists to pursue a discipline that satisfies both the creative and technical problem-solving passions found in the animation field.

How is STEAM (Science, Technology, Art, Engineering, and Math) relevant to this exhibition?

Animation utilizes a broad array of artistic and technical skills. Storytelling requires deep research into literature, history, environments and culture. In development of imagery design theory, film theory and editing theory are all utilized. In order to execute their films, advanced imaging software packages such as Maya, Houdini, Renderman, and Nuke are mastered.

The production process requires not only designers and colorists but coders and rigging artists. Effects artists must study and reinterpret the physics of our world into the worlds they create. Integration with ambient sound, foley and musical scores is achieved through coordination with composers and sound artists. This discipline is attractive to a very particular kind of artist who enjoys being a part of a studio collective.

Behind The Frames artwork by UCF Student , Christina Christie
Hannah Huffman student artwork for Behind the Frames exhibition

Featured Artists: Indianna Alvarez- Sanchez, Erin Bergin, Clinnie Brinson, Isobel Cassidy, James Chambless, Christina Christie, Jamie Dean, Kirstin Hardin, Hannah Huffman, Hannah Jurgens, Clara Kopitnik, Jamie Lachnicht, Nathaniel Shrage,  and Damian Thorn-Hauswirth


The University of Central Florida (UCF) is quickly becoming a prominent institution in the animation field. Both the Character Animation BFA and Animation and Visual Effects MFA tracks allow students to integrate multiple domains of art, storytelling and technology into their body of work. The faculty strives to provide a solid foundation in techniques and theory; a broad understanding of related disciplines including arts, humanities, and technology, and extended experience in working in multidisciplinary teams on realistic problems.

UCF is currently ranked second in the nation on the 2021 list of Top Forty Public Animation Schools and Colleges in the U.S. by Animation Career Review. Their undergraduate program has a strong history of producing award-winning productions and MFA students have presented their research at the annual Society of Animation Studies conference since the MFA’s foundation. Graduates have moved on to work for prestigious film, television, simulation and gaming companies. Alumni have successfully pursued careers such as animators, story artists, visual development artists, lighting artists, technical artists, effects artists, modelers, riggers, or texture artists. The college's faculty and students are dedicated to furthering the art of visual storytelling and further pushing the quality and skill associated with the UCF School of Visual Arts and Design.