share this

Share This Search
News
View full story creativefusionartsrobertmullerciaphoto1114.jpg

Story: Nov 24, 2014

Artist-in-residence Chi-Yu Liao appreciates CIA reception

View details Fall 2014 Exhibitions

CIA Exhibition: Nov 07, 2014

Fall 2014 Exhibitions

View full story madesurrealvictoriabest4041.jpg

Story: Nov 15, 2014

Students capture two of the top prizes in museum's surreal d...

View details The Art of Designing Everything

Events: Dec 01, 2014

The Art of Designing Everything

View Link

Social: about 18 hours ago via Facebook

Further evidence that CIA folks are all over the creative economy: Cleveland public radios David C. Barnett drills down into a recent 110-page report on the ec...

View full story dsc92052.jpg

Story: Nov 04, 2014

New CIA building taking shape; set for December completion

View details Student Holiday Craft Sale

Events: Dec 05, 2014

Student Holiday Craft Sale

View full story bestregmidwest.jpg

Story: Aug 18, 2014

CIA again named to "Best in the Midwest" list

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

News

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.

YouTube Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Flickr Pinterest Instagram

Social Feed

Registration opens Nov. 25 for CIA’s 2D3D contest. Cash prizes + scholarships up for grabs! http://t.co/tlb0CFgHRP http://t.co/xDn4Oj7Rut

4 days ago via Twitter

Questions?

For more information about this or other CIA news, contact us here.

Read More

Community Works

Visiting artists, exhibitions, conference and symposia exploring socially engaged art.

Read More

Uptown Residence Hall

Check out the new student digs.

Read More

Cores + Connections

Creating. Connecting. Building better futures.