TMCC College News

See our Animated Commercial

Posted: Dec 2, 2010

Are you ready to see the latest in animation? 

No, it’s not Toy Story 3. It’s an animated commercial for Truckee Meadows Community College created by a student in the college’s graphic communications program.

Craig Duerksen, a TMCC student, worked with instructor Brian Wells on the project for nearly a year. The final product is a sixty-second animation and live-action commercial that the college can use for registration promotions.

“We are excited with this student work. The project gave a TMCC student real-world experience with a solid outcome,” said Dr. Maria Sheehan, TMCC president.

“The process to create this commercial followed what might be expected in the workplace to give Craig practical experience,” said Wells. “The concept was Craig’s idea. He developed the outline and we drew up the storyboards. After taking the idea to focus groups at AACT and Reed High School, we pitched the idea to the college leadership,” Wells said.

After the concept was finalized, the two worked from January through October 2010. “It was a wonderfully collaborative effort,” said Wells. “The voiceover work was expertly acted by TMCC theater students and was recorded at Tanglewood Studios in Reno.”

The one-minute commercial will be available on the college’s website, as well as social media websites and on television.

Duerksen was a return-to-college student who took several classes in the graphic communications program to build his skills. He then completed the animated commercial as an independent study. Currently, he lives in Reno but is taking classes at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.

“I hope one day to work at one of the big animation studios, such as Pixar or others,” Duerksen said.

The value of the commercial is more than just a portfolio project. “We made the film for $350,” said Wells, but a colleague of his at the UCLA Film School placed the value of the commercial at somewhere between $26,000 and $66,000, depending upon where and how quickly it was made.

To view the commercial, please go to

For information on the college graphic communications programs, please contact TMCC at 775-673-7291 or go visit the Graphic Communications website.

TMCC is a comprehensive community college located in Reno, Nevada. The college serves more than 32,000 students each year in credit and non-credit programs.

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TMCC's Public Information Office
Telephone: 775-673-7087

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