Animate That! NC Arts Council Funding

Arts Council Funding!

We’re pleased to announce that, in partnership with the Alleghany Arts Council and the Alleghany Arts Guild, The Wolfbird has received partial funding support for the Animate That! public stop-motion animation workshops from the NC Arts Council through its 2017-2018 Grassroots Arts Program.

Without the support from these three organizations, it would not be possible to offer the Animate That! workshops at the scale and scope intended.

Animate That!

We hope that the 2018 version of Animate That! is the first annual event, with many more workshops occurring in future years, both in Sparta and elsewhere in the surrounding counties.

Animate That! is a series of creative stop-motion animation workshops designed to foster collaborative artistic endeavors amongst children and adults from a variety of backgrounds and interests.  The project involves a range of activities, including half-day introductory workshops, three day advanced workshops, and a pitch competition (for a short feature production which follows the workshops).

A fully detailed overview of the workshops can be found on our Animate That! page.

Stop Motion at The Wolfbird

We’re fast at work in the brand new studio coming up with some more example animations, including the story of The Wolfbird, but we dug up some old (well, from five years ago!) test animations from the archives of our founder, Ben Erlandson, to give a sense of what can be done in a relatively short timeframe.

Clearly, rough tests, but this helps give a sense of making animations from some of your own favorite inanimate objects.  That’s the goal of Animate That! — bring a few of your favorite things, and make them move around on stage.  It’s magic!

And speaking of digging through the archives, we found this sketch plan for a mechanical stage set in Ben’s notebooks, also from about five years ago…


Rough schematic for reusable small scale stop-motion studio sets.

Notice the backlight technique, the interchangeable sky plates on translucent paper, and the incremental grooves in the base for sliding set pieces (at varied depths) from side to side.

Spread the Word!

A big portion of the funding support from these organizations will extend our marketing budget for the project, which means we can distribute print and digital advertising in a much more effective manner to our targeted audiences.  We’ve drafted flyers for many aspects of the project, including the introductory workshops, the advanced workshops, and the call for musicians and narrators.

Flyer for Animate That! introductory stop-motion workshops
Flyer for Animate That! advanced stop-motion workshops
Recruitment flyer for Animate That! musicians and narrators

If you’d like to get a copy of these flyers to display at your organization once they’re printed, please shoot us an email ( or track us down through The Wolfbird Facebook pageThe best way to stay in touch is to sign up for our email list.

Oh, want to participate as a musician, narrator, or workshop volunteer?  Fill out the forms below.  (You need to live in Alleghany County or within reasonable driving distance, of course.)

Volunteer Interest Form

Use the QR code above or access the Workshop Volunteer Interest Form here and we’ll get back to you soon!

Musicians and Narrators

Use the QR code above or access the Musicians and Narrators Interest Form here and we’ll get back to you soon!

We’re still finalizing the details on the public screening for all completed Animate That! workshop projects, as well as the pitch competition for a collaborative Alleghany County stop-motion animation short feature.

Stay tuned!

This project was supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources.