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Film professor will turn doodles into animated short film thanks to fellowship from Hall Center

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Cathy JoritzIt wasn't until Cathy Joritz, University assistant professor, started doodling a Santa character while in a faculty meeting that she found the starting point for her newest animated short film, “Film Feast.”

That same doodle is what also led her to receive the Creative Work Fellowship from The Hall Center for the Humanities.

Anywhere between three and eight people apply for the fellowship, with projects ranging from writing a novel to jewelry creations, said Victor Bailey, director of the Hall Center for Humanities. The fellowship frees Joritz of teaching responsibilities for one semester and allows her to focus on making her film. It also awards her $1,000 to spend on the production and supplies.

Joritz’s original Santa doodle evolved into a woman with over-exaggerated fat rolls and was later given the name “Frau Dunkt.”  Drawing on her life experiences, "Film Feast" addresses several issues, but the focus is the exploding obsession with computers and phones, said Joritz.

“After I drew Frau Dunkt I started to think about how much time I sit at a computer and how it has affected my life, and how much I miss going out into nature and miss going out and seeing real life things,” Joritz said.

Joritz’s office door is covered with postcards of blue sheep or skeleton Jayhawks that she designed. Inside is a wall of shelves covered with books and famous animated characters such as Spongebob Squarepants that portray the child-like enthusiasm Joritz has for drawing.

“My first memories of drawing were when I was 6 years old,” Joritz said. “That’s when I can remember little kids standing in line at my desk waiting for me to draw a picture of a horse. They would tell me what kind of horse they wanted, and I would draw it. “  Read more.

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