All posts by giantmonster

Mark Chavez, is an award-winning animator, artist, educator, and entrepreneur, and an animation industry veteran. He is a member of the ASIFA (Association Internationale du Film d’Animation / International Animated Film Association), a former Art Gallery Chair of the SIGGRAPH Asia 2013 conference in Hong Kong and Educators Program Chair SIGGRAPH Asia 2008. In 2008 he was granted major funding from the National Research Foundation / Media Development Authority of Singapore to establish research in the School of Art, Design & Media at Nanyang Technological University. The capstone of that work, an innovative short film [Vengeance + Vengeance] screened at 21 international film festivals and competitions. He received 12 awards for the film and supporting research. Mark has developed systems and techniques for animation in many different media including laser light and computer graphics. His work at studios such as Tokyo Broadcasting System Vision, Acclaim Entertainment DreamWorks SKG and Rhythm and Hues Studios in Playa Vista. He has worked on numerous big budget, award-winning animated and live-action films. Animation industry veteran and founding faculty at Nanyang Technological University’s School of Art, Design and Media’s Digital Animation area he is currently based in Singapore and Los Angeles and is consulting on game-based Ed Tech start-up and creating interactive/reactive artworks for public art installations.

Chinese Language Tutor

A demo of a proposed learning game that uses an avatar teacher for Chinese Language Learning. A short heritage film plays on a video screen and our teacher avatar, Mr. Mole watches with the player.

Learning game for Chinese Language Learning.

Content relative to the movie is shown on the chalk board.

The teacher avatar, Mr. Mole interactively discusses the movie with the player.

Content Development Think Tank

My research at NTU encompassed the creation of a think tank focused on game design and development. Game Design for Entertainment: A Content Development Think Tank

Short teaser film, uses automated lipsync

This research is focused on content development borrowing from contemporary game concepts ideas for consumption in popular culture. Our methodology, a collaborative research project, will examine technical aspects of game design and integrate it with research that examines popular trends.

Bartyrun game play trailer

Game Design for Entertainment is an idea that incubates game research focusing on creating unique visuals and gameplay concepts. Much of video game research looks at the psychological effects of violent and aggressive gameplay on the user. Our research will look at appeal in visual characterization and interaction, e.g. game design.

UCLA Art/Sci Center 2018

With my partner A/P Ina Conradi I spent the first months of 2018 as an artist-in-residence at UCLA. At the end of this time we presented work we created at their gallery at the California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI) at UCLA.

Exhibition at UCLA

Additionally, I collaborated with Victoria Vesna and Ina Conradi on a video piece for a The Twelve States of the HOX Zodiac exhibition on 2018/05/31 created for Building Bridges Art Exchange, Santa Monica, curated by Marisa Caichiolo.

Cinematics and Narratives

I published an academic article on “the making of” in MIT’s Leonardo online magazine that covers a research grant I received from Singapore’s National Research Foundation through the Media Development Authority.

I did a number of experiments while working on this project. Initially my research team worked on tagging imagery to evoke specific emotions, excited, happy, sad and melancholy.

Design exploration for Emotion Study

We mapped this work to design style and created a playback system that morphed from one look to another.

I worked with a number of great SE Asian artists on this project.

JC Wong artwork
Virtual sculpture by Stefani Irwan


In 2018 my collaboration with my partner Ina Conradi Chrysalis was honored at the Advanced Imaging Society’s Lumiere Awards ceremony at Warner Bros Studios Burbank. We’re credited as “NTU Singapore.”

It was featured in S3D on the NVidia 3D Vision Live channel, as Winner of the Best 3D at 8th Annual New Media Film Festival. It’s an older site and you may need a special NVidia S3D rig to view it.

Emote Project

The Emote Project, comprised of 50 minutes of animation in four chapter and 5 sections 2017) is about feelings, brain waves, and real-time experimental animation. Data recorded from EEG brainwave signals were analyzed for emotional patterns and reinterpreted to generate 20 animated chapters.

Emote (2017) is an ongoing series of real-time experimental animation that resulted from an interdisciplinary collaboration between Media Art Nexus and the NTU School of Computer Science and Engineering, (SCSE). The Emote Project is about feelings, brain waves and real-time experimental animation. Using EEG, the brain signals were recorded and analyzed for recognizing emotional patterns and used for generating 20 animated chapters in real time after the non-lyrical music clips of the known emotional class (such as happy, sad, exciting, scary, etc.). NTU SCSE contributed their scientific knowledge about neuro-network and specific analysis of EEG signals. The emotional states in the brain manifest EEG signals and machine-learning techniques in order to learn patterns of emotions certain signals.These can be utilized for the recognition of emotion and generating suitable external stimuli to elicit a desired emotional response.

Emote Project at the Media Art Nexus screen aspect ratio 8:1.5

We used 20 anime derived non-lyrical music clips of known emotional class (happy, exciting, sad, melancholy) provided by the Computer Science and Engineering Team.

In this work, music language is a means for learning emotions in brain and is used as an external stimulus in response to the emotional state of the brain. A study would observe the same feedback when using visuals.

Related research

Mark Chavez, Yun Ke Chang, “Cinematics and Narratives: Movie Authoring & Design Focused Interaction.” Leonardo Electronic Almanac, Published 2013-07-15,

Yun-Ke Chang, Mark J. Chavez, Miguel A. Morales Arroyo and Jaime Jimenez-Guzman. “An Active Cinema Experience: A Study on User Expectation and Perceived Gratifications of a Real-time Animated Film System.” 2012 Ninth International Conference on Information Technology – New Generations (2012): 674-679.


In a world where scientific achievement has merged the boundaries between man and weapon, one woman stands apart. The Resnick Corporation through advanced genomic research stands poised to control weapon development with an advanced soldier prototype. The only problem, the prototype has gone wrong.


[Vengeance+Vengeance] is a movie that is authored in a game engine, designed in three different styles. We varied the characterization between three design targets. Our standard style targets naturalistic proportions and colors, our cute style targets cartoon-like rounded shapes and colorful though soft tones and our extreme style attempts a more film-noir look with exaggerated though human proportions, more texture detail and an overall more contrasting tonal treatment. Typically this design style is used when she is in vulnerable situations. We use this style to draw empathy from the audience making the character more child-like and vulnerable in appearance.

The movie is created interactively by blending through these three design styles in a interactive director driven authoring system. What is presented is the final outcome of the work where the design of the characters changes in volume and color tone to manipulate the viewer’s experience.

Awards received for [Vengeance+Vengeance]

Singapore: Inside Out Tokyo

MAN was one of 13 Singaporean (SG) and Japanese (JP) leading contemporary creative talents from performing disciplines and visual arts that took part in 2017’s edition of Singapore: Inside Out Tokyo (SG:IO from August 25–27, 2017), organized by the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), in conjunction with the launch of Singapore’s new destination brand—Passion Made Possible—in Tokyo.

Singapore: Inside Out Tokyo (SG:IO from August 25–27, 2017)

Crepuscular Rays of the Moon  was created in collaboration with Singaporean fashion designer Josiah Chua and his 2018 capsule collection, titled Hikari. The SGIO Tokyo event, at the Bank Gallery, Omotesando district of Tokyo, drew an audience of about 2,000 on first day of opening. Joining them were more than 200 key members of the creative trade and media communities.

For SGIO Tokyo 2017 exhibition ‘Hyper City’, multimedia collective MAN NTU, Ina Conradi and Mark Chavez, collaborated with the Singaporean fashion designer Josiah Chua and his 2018 capsule collection, titled “光”, which is “light” in Japanese. For this SG:IO exhibition, Media Art Nexus, and Josiah created an interactive projection of dazzling stars and light that moves with the viewer, all to evoke that specific magic of Sailor Moon’s transformation. 

Nocturne visuals by Mark Chavez, music by Tate Chavez

Directed, animated and programmed in TD by Mark Chavez | Giant Monster Pte Ltd I SG/US
Collaborator Ina Conradi | NTU ADM
Interaction programming by Corey Mason Manders | A*STAR 
VFX assistance Pamela Ng | NTU ADM
Sound / Sound Design Philip Tan | SG 
Music Score Tate Chavez | US/SG

Singapore Inside-out Artists highlight

“They have translated the idea of time in hyperspace as depicted in the anime magical girl series of Sailor Moon.” The magical transformation sequence of the concept of “frozen in time” was expressed through the medium of clothing/material and projected “Crepuscular rays of the Moon”, myriad abstract dreamlike animated fantasies inspired by the moon.