A Blanck Canvas is a Melbourne-based company that creates unique, custom 2D and 3D artwork. Puppetry and large scale installations are the focus of the company but A Blanck Canvas creates everything from large scale puppets, art and murals to large props, sets and installations for film, theatre and events.
A Blanck Canvas is the brainchild of Director Joe Blanck. Joe is a talented and experienced puppet, creature and prop designer, builder and painter having worked in the industry for over twenty years. Joe started his own company 4 years ago and has added an exceptionally talented group of individuals to the team. In addition to puppet and prop making wizards, core members of the team include mechatronics engineers, special effects professionals, international performers, costume designers, graphic designers and event co-ordinators.
Clients include national and international organisations such as The Melbourne Museum, Jakarta Aquarium Indonesia, Cirque Du Soleil, Coles, ICC Cricket World Cup as well as White Night and The Victorian Opera.
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Joe Blanck- is the Director of A Blanck Canvas which has been operating since 2013 bringing the unimaginable to life through 2D and 3D art forms; designing, building, sculpting and painting, unique and bespoke artwork. With 15 years of professional industry experience under his belt Joe is a talented and experienced Creature designer, builder and painter having worked for the Creature Technology Company lending and developing his skills as Lead Scenic Artist and Colour Designer for over 6 years on productions including: Walking with Dinosaurs, How to Train Your Dragon - Arena Spectacular, and KING KONG as Creature Artist and Concept Artist.
Meagan Short gets called “an ideas person” which makes her well suited as head of Creative Operations at A Blanck Canvas. At A Blanck Canvas Meagan has the unique opportunity to be involved in the concept/ design phase of projects, as well as the organisational aspects she is well versed in.
Meagan has been an administrative and event co-ordination professional for over 15 years, having worked with some of the largest and most awarded construction and property development firms in Australia. She has co-ordinated large-scale conferences, awards galas, and contract administration for multi-million dollar projects. Meagan has always found an outlet for her creative side; drawing and painting, restoring furniture or creative writing. She is inspired by the ever-fascinating natural world, fearless creatives and the talented team at A Blanck Canvas including her amazing partner.
Head of Animatronics
Nick Calver is a qualified Mechatronics Engineer who has worked for the last 3 years in the animatronics industry. With a background in mechanical and electrical design as well as coding and show control, his broad skill set will be invaluable to the project. He has worked on a variety of creatures and characters, including for the Myer Christmas Windows as the Imagineering team leader, developing an animatronic head for a werewolf creature suit, designing and programming full-scale Thomas the Tank Engine face and has most recently worked as a controls technician for the life-size animatronic dinosaurs in Jurassic World: The Exhibition.
Props and Puppets
Nathan Reardon Graduated Swinburne's Theatre Arts Diploma in 2005. Initially having an interest in performing, Nathan discovered puppetry under the guidance of Handspand's Ken Evans. Nathan since has been involved in contract and freelance puppetry performance and making. Nathan's Resume includes; Over 10 annual Moomba festival parade performances (suit, climb in and hand puppets), Being part of, 'A Blanck Canvas' team, construction and performing various puppets including, Black Hole Theatre's Les Meduses (Jellyfish) in Canberra's, Enlighten festival, IPAY summit (Madison WI), the Children's Film Festival (Brooklyn Academy of Music NY). Performing fire flies with the Indirect Object at White night and Canberra's enlighten festival. Construction and performance of the 6m tall cricketer player for the International Cricket Competition opening ceremony. Film prop construction for feature, short and horror movies. Making and operating puppets for Violent Florence and Cat Sick Blues. Television, most notably, Wizards of Aus, (puppet making and operation and art Dept) and The Leftovers in the props construction Dept. Props, puppet and set building for NICA show cases (National Institute in Circus Arts), Soft fabrication with Creature Technologies Company for the Sochi Olympic opening ceremony, Stage1 imagineering team (Award winning team behind the annual Melbourne and Brisbane Christmas Myer windows), Costume and props / puppet making for various burlesque acts, Nathan also was character floor staff and understudy for Dracula's cabaret Melb 2007 to 2013. For 4 years Nathan was Head of props Dept. making props, puppet, attractions for their haunted house, set making and venue maintenance for both Melbourne and Queensland Dracula's Cabaret.
Cassandra has had a love for cinema and art since she was a child, and has experimented with many art forms. When she graduated high school she decided to enrol and the Academy of Makeup and completed a diploma in specialised makeup services. She then began work as a freelance makeup artist as well as working as a colour specialist at Mecca Cosmetica for 3 years. At Mecca her artistry was recognised by the company and she was selected to work on the makeup team for Melbourne Spring Fashion week in 2014 and 2015. As a free-lance artist she has worked on a variety of jobs which include photo shoots, fashion, bridal and advertisements. Although she enjoyed it and learnt a lot, she didn’t feel straight makeup work was satisfying her artistic needs. Since she has always had an interest in special effects she went on to complete an Advanced make up effects course at Sharp FX (a Melbourne based special effects studio) in 2013 and passed with a high distinction. She was then employed by Sharp FX, and worked both in the studio - making plaster and fibre glass moulds, sculpting, running silicone and foam latex, hair punching and life casting – and on set doing prosthetic application and colouring and maintenance. She worked on a variety of projects including feature films, mannequins for museums, music videos and live performance. Cassandra then started working for Joe Blanck at A Blanck Canvas in 2015. Her first job there was in a team fabricating props and the set for the Jurassic World exhibition. She has been working there ever since, on a wide range of projects – sets, foam fabrication, puppets and props.
Props and Puppets
Deiter Barry is a Melbourne based artist who specialises in bringing imagination to life. Over the years he has worked with many talented artists and directors around Australia on films, commercials, in theatre and for haunted attractions. He has also had the pleasure of creating wearable puppets for the National Gallery of Victoria and the Melbourne Museum. During his experience, he has gained a wide knowledge in working with a variety of mediums and materials including resins, polyurethanes, silicones, latex and of late, has branched out onto the field of foam latex prosthetics, body casting and special effects makeup. Making the bizarre, wonderful and at times gruesome images that he and his clients hold in their imaginations, is not just a job for him but his passion. It’s this passion that will drive him for many years to come to keep doing what he does, and that is, The art of bringing imagination to life.
Jai Hallam is a Melbourne based Artist / Graphic Designer who creates Art for himself and Graphic Design for businesses. Jai is a creative who likes learning new techniques and incorporating them into his work. That's why he loves working at A Blanck Canvas and picking up new skills that show in his personal work. Jai has completed Visual Art and Graphic Design Diplomas and creates artwork in his spare time. Jai takes care of A Blanck Canvas's Video production, documenting our creative process and helps out on the factory floor with anything he can. A keen learner and an online tech dude who enjoys picking up skills from his fellow A Blanck Canvas crew and being part of an industry that makes him happy.