Glen Ellyn, Illinois
“We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it themselves.”
— Galileo Galilei
Anthony Venezia teaches film, video, animation, and motion graphics at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. He joined the college in 2005 to create and manage the animation program. In 2008, the first students with degrees in animation graduated from DuPage, and the program has been growing since. Graduates have been accepted by DePaul University, Illinois Institute of Art, California Institute of the Arts, and California College of the Arts.
Venezia’s interest in animation began early in his life. In 1969, while in high school, he began creating independent films with his clay animated piece “Klei.” The three-minute stop-motion film won several awards, including a best animation award in the college-level category. Venezia studied film in college, creating several award-winning films while at Illinois State University. In 1978, he moved to Los Angeles when he was accepted to work on his MFA at UCLA’s Animation Workshop. During his time at UCLA, Venezia created more award-winning films, including one that won the honor of national finalist for the student Academy Awards in 1983.
In 1981, he formally began his career in special effects at Mid Ocean Motion Pictures in Hollywood, a unique studio that created special effects for major TV commercials and show openings. It was here that Venezia started experimenting with a technique called slit-scan, a process of painting with light directly onto film. From 1981 to 1989 he completed three abstract films using this technique.
In 1983, Venezia founded Electric Filmworks Inc., a special effects company that created film effects, graphics, theatrical movie openings, and trailer elements for major feature film studios as well as television and cable networks.
He went back to his Midwest roots in 2000 to raise his children in an area that he felt was more family-friendly than Los Angeles. He worked for four seasons on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” in its on-air graphics department, and has created nearly all of the show graphics and elements for Total Living Network.