4 Questions with Animator and Teaching Artist John Akre

Our visitors have been having a great time collaborating with teaching artist John Akre to create stop motion animation videos. We recently asked him a few questions about his experience here and for tips on how to create stop motion videos at home.

  1. What has your experience here been like? It has been great to be at Minnesota Children’s Museum. I have had a wonderful time working with the staff and visitors to make some fun stop motion animation. When people see how their animation turns out after they do it is probably the most fun part about it.
  2. What has been your most memorable interaction with a visitor so far? I was asking visitors to create space sounds or music for our Space City animation. Often the young visitors didn’t quite know what to make of the idea. One visitor took a long time to come up with something. I had resolved myself that he wasn’t going to make any sound. And then he started singing this strange rhythmic song that was just perfect for the animation, and he kept on singing it, until I said “Thank you!”
  3. What draws you to stop motion animation? have been making stop motion animated films since I was ten, so I don’t really remember why I wanted to do it when I was that young. But the satisfaction I get when I can make something that isn’t real come alive keeps me doing it.
  4. Are there easy ways people can make stop motion videos at home? There are several apps for phones and tablets that are great for stop motion. If you have an ipad or iphone you can download iMotion, which is free and has some great stop motion abilities. The most important things are to figure out a way to secure your phone or table, by taping it to something often works. And have some kind of idea to help you string all your stop motion ideas together with.

Thanks to John and to all our visitors who have participated in this fun activity! John will be here again on Saturday, April 28, from 2 to 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, April 29, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

See all the videos John and museum visitors created.

Learn more about John.

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