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Apr 17, 2014

Design major gets zombie's reception at her former school

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Mar 15, 2014 @ MOCA Cleveland in Cleveland, OH

CIA's Traveling Sketchbooks make a last stop at MOCA

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Apr 16, 2014

Alumnus and superhero comics writer Brian Bendis visits CIA

View details Dinner by Design – Art of the Table, and a runway show

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Mar 28, 2014

Dinner by Design – Art of the Table, and a runway show

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Come out and celebrate CIA ingenuity with us tonight in University Circle Inc.! Join us for the Spring Illustration + Animation Show opening reception, the Spring Design Show opening reception, and NEO: A Runway Show. All events are free and open to the public. See more details at www.cia.edu/springshows.

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Apr 15, 2014

Students win $11,000 in Dealer Tire art competition

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Mar 28, 2014

The Accident: Recent Work by Nicky Nodjoumi

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Apr 11, 2014

Romanian visiting artist brings new perspective to CIA

View details 2014 Spring Illustration + Animation Show

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Apr 22, 2014

2014 Spring Illustration + Animation Show

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Apr 22, 2014

4/24-27: Bernard Hermann weekend with CITIZEN KANE, MARNIE & more!

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Aug 20, 2013

CIA named one of the "Best in the Midwest"

View details 2014 Spring Design Show

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Apr 22, 2014 @ Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland in Cleveland, OH

2014 Spring Design Show

News . Feature Stories . Leap of Faith Leads Joe Bluhm '03 to Academy Award-Winning Film

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May 01, 2012

Leap of Faith Leads Joe Bluhm '03 to Academy Award-Winning Film

Illustration Graduate Builds Awesome Studio Career

Leap of Faith Leads Joe Bluhm '03 to Academy Award-Winning Film

Joe Bluhm ’03 took a leap of faith three years ago and ended up with a 2012 Oscar to his credit.

The former Cleveland Institute of Art illustration major was successfully doing freelance work in New York City when he received a phone call about an opening for a story board artist in Shreveport, Louisiana.

He left the Big Apple and joined what became Moonbot Studios, producers of The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, which won the Academy Award for best animated short film. The studio calls this delightful 15-minute flick “a love letter to books (that) is about the curative power of story.”

The story of Bluhm’s career started at CIA. “My first two years at CIA were amazing. My instructors, especially David Mitri and Daniel Dove, gave me more attention that I’d ever gotten in my life except from my mother and maybe my elementary school art teacher,” he recalled.

“In illustration, (Department Head and Professor) Dom Scibilia was great. What he taught me about freelancing really helped, like promoting myself, being professional, and dealing with art directors.”

That artistic and professional instruction paid off for Bluhm, who is thriving on a team of wildly creative artists. He wears many hats at Moonbot where he serves as concept artist, story developer, story artist, character designer, visual developer, and environment and prop designer. “We’re very nimble and small so a lot of people do a lot of things,” he said.

Bluhm said the Oscar nomination wasn’t such a surprise; he knew he was working on something special with Morris Lessmore.

“But I freaked out when I learned that we had actually won. I just remember hugging a lot of people embarrassingly. I’ve never felt like that before. It was kind of a validation of leaving New York, where I was happy, and moving to a small studio in the south.”

Bluhm was also the lead creative designer and developer for the iPad App storybook version of The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, which was named App of the Year by Tap!and Apps Magazine. He is now illustrating the printed book version of the story, which will be released later this year by Simon & Schuster.

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Thanks @Kristel_CLE @clevelanddotcom for checking out NEO: A Runway Show last night! http://t.co/gJc0WcZ28m

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