Get Ready for Cartoon Crunch, a Five-Part Reality Show Mini Series with Mike Morris


Our inbox is full of entries from budding animation students near and far. After carefully reviewing each submission, we’re thrilled to announce that we’ve chosen our eight talented participants to kick off the making of Cartoon Crunch! Cartoon what, you ask? Let’s back up a bit…

We’ve partnered with animation all-star Mike Morris to bring you a reality show-type mini-series about the process, pitfalls and breakthroughs of making cartoons, all in the course of one week. Two teams of four student animators will be selected to take on the task of creating an animated short with the guidance of professional mentors. The prompt: create a cartoon that depicts what creative collaborations will look like in the future. The students will each receive a Wacom One and $1500 for their participation — sweet!

Meet our mentors

Jeff Ranjo

Jeff Ranjo is a 26 year veteran of the animation industry where he’s created storyboards and character designs for films such as Emperor’s New Groove, Surf’s Up, Frozen and Moana. He’s lent his story talents to Disney Feature Animation, Sony Pictures Animation, Warner Animation Group and  just wrapped up as Head of Story on “Maya and the Three” for Netflix. Jeff is now working on several top secret projects at Netflix. He taught character design for 6 years at CalArts and believes character is the basis for every story. His favorite film is Aliens and he likes the color blue.

Luciano Herrera

Luciano Herrera is a Los Angeles-based Argentinian production designer, illustrator and art director with over seven years’ experience in the animation industry. His practice ranges from art direction and visual development to illustration and comics. He has worked with studios such as Disney TV Animation, Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, Warner Brothers, and Titmouse.

Travis Blaise

Travis Blaise was first hired at Disney through their summer internship program and thus began his 14 year career there, bringing to life characters such as Frollo, Shan Yu, the Huns, Stitch, Koda, Goofy and many others. He then left Disney to continue his career in the industry wearing several different hats in the production pipeline including director and animator for Cartoon Network, story artist for Disney and Rough Draft Studios, and character designer for Nickelodeon. In recent years, Travis has grown into the role of a mentor and educator for up and coming artists in the industry. As the founder of Sketch to Animate, he is pursuing his passion for developing new and original stories and teaching everyone exactly why he believes cartoons are so awesome.

Animation Workshops: Learn alongside our student animators

We invite all of our entrants and animation enthusiasts to join us for a three-part animation workshop series that will take place during the filming of Cartoon Crunch. Our mentors will cover handy topics like storyboarding, production design and, you guessed it, animation! Follow us on social media to make sure you don’t miss out on registration.

You’re invited!

For those whose animation skills aren’t quite ready for the spotlight or are simply Mike Morris fans who want to tune in, we have a treat for you! We will be releasing the five-part mini series over the course of five days with live watch parties each day. After each episode, a live Q&A with the professional mentor featured in the episode of that day will take questions from the chat and offer general production tips.

And for the final celebration, we welcome everyone to join us for a special Popcorn Premiere Party which will include a short panel with our student animators and the debut of the final cartoon animations.

Schedule of events

Three-part animation workshop series:

September 14 — Storytelling for Animation with Jeff Ranjo

Register here >

September 16 — Animation Production Design with Luciano Herrera

Register here >

September 18 — Live Production Animation Demonstration with Travis Blaise

Register here >

Cartoon Crunch mini series & Popcorn Premiere Party:

September 21-25 — Click the link below to register for all five daily episodes and our final animation celebration!

Register here >

Shout out to our sponsors

Thank you to Annex Pro, B&H, Staples Canada and Toon Boom Animation for joining in on the Cartoon Crunch fun! Tune in to score amazing promotions from our sponsors.



So grab your tablets and notebooks and kick off the school year with the ultimate animation assignment: Cartoon Crunch!


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