Oscar-winning director mentors Scottish students

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An Oscar-winning director has arrived in Scotland to mentor the next generation of film-makers.

Mark Andrews, the director of Disney•Pixar’s Oscar-winning animation Brave, will give lectures and lead workshops at the internationally renowned Glasgow School of Art (GSA) for the next two weeks. It is the first time one of Pixar’s senior creatives has undertaken a mentoring project in the UK.

He said: “I have found my lecturing and mentoring work with students in the USA incredibly satisfying and I’m now looking forward to working with the students across the many different disciplines here at The Glasgow School of Art.”

Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “I am delighted to welcome Mark back to Scotland following Brave’s Oscar success, exactly a year to the day since I visited Pixar’s Studios during Scotland Week 2012. This mentoring and skills sharing programme is a fantastic opportunity for emerging Scottish animation and film-making talent to learn from one of the very best in the business, and is a direct result of Brave and Scotland’s strong relationship with Disney•Pixar.”

GSA student Katy Gilchrist said: “Being given the opportunity of meeting and working alongside Oscar-winning Mark Andrews is incredible. His skills can be applied to any creative mind regardless of the creative field, and I am looking forward to applying them as source of inspiration in my own work.” 

Fellow student Mairi Blyth added: “I’ve been most looking forward to learning about the important aspects of telling a story in motion graphics, how to build plots and character and how to engage audiences with that character or idea.”

A highlight of Mark Andrews’ time in Glasgow will be a visit to a primary school to see the GSA’s work in the wider community. Students from the GSA have been working on an animation project with two classes at Pirie Park Primary in Govan, and the pupils will present the characters they have developed to Mr Andrews before he gives a talk to the whole school.

GSA Director Professor Seona Reid said: “Widening participation is a key commitment at The Glasgow School of Art. We are delighted that as well as mentoring our students Mark will experience the work that we undertake encouraging creativity and raising aspirations of pupils who historically have not gone on to higher education. His visit will be an inspirational experience for the young people.”