For Immediate Release
Contact: Casey Follen
Phone Number: 248-787-8007
Introducing the Hello Stop Mo Podcast - A New Limited Series Providing Introductory Knowledge of the Stop Motion Industry to Help Reduce Barriers of Entry for Newcomers
Hosted by stop motion artists Alexis Deprey and Casey Follen, the show provides insights into working in stop motion animation including an overview of the production process, a history of stop motion, and how to start and navigate a career as a stop motion professional
Los Angeles, CA, February 2, 2022 - With the evolution of digital cameras, software such as Dragonframe, and smartphone animation apps—stop motion is in a new heyday. However, free resources for learning about stop motion animation—and specifically how to build a career as a stop motion artist—are scattered and often hard to find. Hello Stop Mo is a new, limited-run podcast packed with information and resources on working in stop motion animation hosted by two well-established stop motion professionals Alexis Deprey and Casey Follen.
Alexis and Casey met while working at Stoopid Buddy Stoodios in Los Angeles. When the entertainment industry shut down in March of 2020 at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the duo co-created Animation Wild Card (AWC) along with friends from Apartment D Films as a way to support the work of those creating independent animation. Contributors from across the world submitted animated shorts that were then curated into episodes for distribution on Instagram and YouTube. It was the community building through AWC that sparked the idea for the Hello Stop Mo podcast.
“Animation Wild Card got some press and as a result, Casey and I were featured on two podcasts to talk about the project,” said Alexis. “When we were on Cassie Soliday’s Ink and Paint Folk podcast, she suggested that with our experience in stop motion and our backgrounds in teaching, we should create a podcast specific to the stop motion industry.” Soliday not only suggested that Alexis and Casey create what ultimately became the Hello Stop Mo podcast, but she also serves as the show’s producer.
According to Soliday, “I felt like screaming, “YOU MUST MAKE A PODCAST ABOUT STOP MOTION!” but I didn’t. Because that is weird—and Casey and Lex probably wouldn’t like being screamed at. But after interviewing them for Animation Wild Card, it was clear that their passion was genuine, and that they wanted to share what they’ve learned along the way because there’s not a lot out there about how to start with stop motion! They ooze intelligence, charm, and all this DIY stop-mo know-how, so luckily together, we bottled up all that glorious ooze and released it as a limited series podcast.”
Over the course of fourteen episodes, Alexis and Casey dive into multiple aspects of the stop motion animation industry. They go over traditional and non-traditional education paths to learn stop motion animation, the history of the medium as it relates to technological advancements, what working at a studio is like including different roles and departments as well as the steps of the stop motion animation pipeline. Additional topics include preparing professional readiness materials, how to network and build relationships in the animation industry, and managing a career in stop motion plus how the future of stop motion is being shaped right now. The hosts are also joined by two guests—director, animator, writer, producer, and professor, Musa Brooker, joins the podcast duo to discuss education paths. Seamus Walsh, a stop motion animator, director, and studio owner also lends his expertise in the stop motion history episodes.
Although stop motion animation has been around for decades, it wasn’t an easily accessible medium to work in until recently. Within the last twenty years, more major studios have opened up specifically for stop motion, but a lot of collegiate and professional art education programs don’t include stop motion as part of their curriculum. According to Casey, “With the exception of the most elite animation programs in the country, if you go to school for animation and get a four year degree, you might be lucky to get a class or two on stop motion. Usually it’s an elective course and will only run if it gets enough students to enroll.”
Casey also notes that an in-depth education in stop motion animation typically happens on the job and is often obtained via unpaid internships at a studio. “The few paid internships available are generally minimum wage. What tends to be the case is that you have to come from a position of privilege to have these experiences as an intern.” The Hello Stop Mo podcast is a free, widely available repository of resources to help anyone interested in getting into stop motion learn how to do so, and it’s a great supplemental resource for existing animation education programs.
The response to the podcast since its launch this past November has been overwhelmingly positive:
“I just listened to hello stop mo!! It’s absolutely wonderful and inspiring!! It honestly came out at a super good time for me…I’ve been thinking about transitioning into stop motion fabrication and making some puppets for a portfolio. So hearing these stories gave me the itch to keep going.”
- Kathleen in Los Angeles, CA
“...it feels like serendipitous timing because I’ve just made my first stop motion (very) short at the end of October, and have absolutely hands down decided I need to go for this career. Today’s episode is the one I was waiting for! Every episode has been great so far.”
- Angel in Eugene, OR
“Thank you for this episode. This is what I needed to hear this time when all the negative thoughts caught me.”
- Mee in Los Angeles, CA
“I just started teaching this semester so I'm stoked to have resources to recommend to my students!” ❤️
- Headexplodie in Oakland, CA
“Love that you guys are focusing on pure stop motion. Count me in as an avid listener”
- Joseph in Dublin, Ireland
All episodes of Hello Stop Mo are available to stream now. You can listen to all episodes on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher, or on the Animation Wild Card website at https://animationwildcard.com/hellostopmo.
About Alexis Deprey
Alexis Deprey is a stop motion art director and production designer as well as co-host of Hello Stop Mo. Over the past decade Alexis has worked on numerous projects across mediums including television, film, commercial, and the web. She was the Art Director for seasons 8 and 9 of Robot Chicken which both won Emmy awards for their Christmas specials. Based in upstate New York, she co-owns and runs a boutique stop motion animation studio with her husband, Scott DaRos, called Threadwood. Alexis is also a co-founder and project organizer of Animation Wild Card. For more information about Alexis, visit https://www.threadwood.com.
About Casey Follen
Casey manages stop motion animation and mixed-media productions in Los Angeles and co-hosts Hello Stop Mo. Catalyst Castle Studios is her freelance brand specializing in stop motion animation and sculptural illustration. Casey also teaches at the College for Creative Studies and the Laguna College of Art and Design, and is a co-founder and project organizer of Animation Wild Card. For more information about Casey, visit https://catalystcastlestudios.com.
About Cassie Soliday
Cassie is a writer and cartoonist, who specializes in animation and has worked for companies such as Disney, Nickelodeon, and Warner Bros. They host the Ink and Paint Folk podcast which celebrates women and non-binary folk in the animation industry and helped produce the Hello Stop Mo Podcast. For more information about Cassie, visit http://casassy.com/.
About Animation Wild Card
Animation Wild Card (AWC) grew out of an experiment in quarantine 2020 and has evolved into a collaborative that brings together animators from around the world. International contributors across a variety of mediums and styles submit animated shorts that get presented in an compilated, episodic form. AWC has created a community for veteran and emerging animation filmmakers alike and continues to be a platform to showcase the many different voices in animation. For more information, visit https://animationwildcard.com.