Street Talk for January 8, 2021
Taamrat Amaize

COLLINS, an independent strategy, design and communications company in San Francisco and New York City, has named Taamrat Amaize as head of strategy. Amaize’s approach to brand building challenges clients to consider broader and more diverse perspectives in their company narratives as well as examine the true face of their brand in the world. Amaize believes that brand is a key driver that grows and scales business and that brands must do more to be responsible for the communities they serve and support. The goal is to have a positive, ethical impact with everything they do. Over her career, Amaize has worked with global brand consultancy Interbrand, and boutique firm Wolff Olins, guiding Fortune 500 clients through brand and business transformation before joining COLLINS. Amaize is also co-founder and creative strategy director for Skill Committee, a collective-based agency of brand and business consultants, strategic thinkers and creative directors hailing from leading brand, advertising and consulting firms. Her work has championed strategically creative approaches to solving business challenges, moving beyond the traditional confines of branding to help businesses grow with equity in mind.

Veteran 3D artist Thomas Connors has been named VFX supervisor/CG generalist at ArsenalCreative, the Santa Monica studio headed by founder Mark Leiss. Building on his 20 years of experience in CG for high-end visual effects, Connors has carved an impressive niche in specializing in modeling and texture elements for CG environments for television and the automotive industry. Most recently, Connors was the CG supervisor at Picture Shop/Ghost FX in Burbank where for three-and-a-half years he worked on notable projects such as Walking Dead, Fear of the Walking Dead, McGuyver, Hawaii 5-0 and Shameless. He coordinated and managed a team of 20 to 30 artists to execute simultaneous deliveries on multiple projects. He has also been a CG supervisor and/or CG lead artists at Mind Over Eye, Sway Studio, Mirada and Big Block. During the past two decades, Connors has worked to develop creative strategies through innovative production process improvements that elevate the viewers experience and bring the client’s vision to life.  Especially during the past year, the halting of production and the inability to shoot live scenes due to the COVID-19 pandemic have presented the need to creatively adapt. For Shameless, he was able to develop digital environments to replicate real life sets to create continuity for the viewer. Connors received an Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Main Title Design for Cosmos, and HPA Award nominations for Best Visual Effects for TV series for The Flash and Hawaii 5-0. He won back-to-back Leo Awards for his visual effects work on The Flash. Connors studied media arts and animation at the Art Institute of California. Responding to what he saw as a deficiency in online instructional content, he also teaches FX skills courses in using industry-based teaching concepts and real-life techniques....


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