PBS Commissions Artopia

Ron Doucet recently pointed me to a new PBS series, Artopia, a mixed-media television show for kids about the world of art. It was produced for Thirteen.org & Decode Entertainment by Steve DeNure, Beth Stevenson, Jill Peters, Sandra Sheppard, and Kim Hyde. Direction was handled by Murray Bain, art direction by Marek Colek and animation direction by Andrew Holland. Below is the first episode, animated in Flash by the gang at Copernicus Studios Inc, with some Photoshop, After Effects and 3D thrown in to complete the final look.

In this full episode below, you can see they’ve animated the series with lively characters, lush backgrounds and a great sense of timing throughout.



  1. Now THIS is how Flash shouuld be used!
    Fluid animation and it was just awesome.

  2. Copernicus rules.

  3. Murray Bain October 29, 2008

    wow, thanks Ron and Aaron for the great plug! Hope it goes to series, the pilot was fun to make.

  4. I love the camera movment.

  5. great animation and pretty cool idea, But I really dislike the character choice, iv noticed that in a lot of today’s cartoons, the first character will be white, then the second character will be black and then usually a Asian character will follow, and I have to ask why the hell are you guys doing this???, are you afraid of missing out on a few people watching your cartoon if you made them all white, or all black… or are you afraid you might be labeled racist?
    Maybe it’s just me but I get really annoyed at how political correctness is shaping the way everyone makes cartoons, and I think it should stop. If I was making a cartoon and someone asked me to change a characters race to try being more politically correct, someone’s going to loose an eye.
    This cartoon is based on a pretty cool idea and it would really help improve the current crap hole today’s cartoons seem to be stuck in, cause it’s a new idea and it interesting. But please don’t fall into the politically correctness hole, because the fact of the matter is that people from different races don’t really get along that well, why should it happen in cartoons. Make them all black, make them all white, make them all asian I don’t care but don’t try filling the minds of today’s children with what’s wrong with the world.

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