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Innovation News

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles by Tri-State's DarcyVDesign

After a decade in New York, Cincinnati native Darcy Voorhees returned home to build her own animation studio. But the 1997 Kings High School graduate doesn't limit herself to local accounts. Vorhees' DarcyVDesign contributed to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles Forever, a movie feting the cartoon's 25th anniversary, from her home office.

"The storyboarding work my company did on TMNT is just one example of the great creative products that can be delivered from some place other than the (East or West) Coasts," says Vorhees. "With technological advances in communication, we are just an email, text message, video phone call, or instant message away from our clients. We can do everything the folks on the coasts can do, and more." 

Vorhees' resume also includes commercials, pilots, Disney's Lizzie McGuire Movie, MTV's Friday: The Animated Series, and over 100 TMNT episodes. She credits her success to the relationships she's built in the industry and help from her professors at Brooklyn's Pratt Institute. "Truthfully, I never interviewed for a job. In animation, they care that (colleagues) get along with you, and they look at your portfolio." At Pratt, Vorhees majored in Film with a concentration in Traditional Animation. She finished her bachelorís in 2001, at the dawn of the digital revolution. "I learned digital animation in the real world, not in college."

Being a gender pioneer was a small obstacle for Vorhees, who started dreaming of an animation career at age 13. She was the only female at the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' studio in New York City. The show's male-centric themes expanded her creative palette.  "At first, it was hard to connect with the guys, but I learned a lot. I have a new appreciation for martial arts now."

Vorhees looks forward to connecting with Cincinnati companies; she can lend her diversity of skills to commercials and other corporate needs. Upcoming projects for DarcyVDesign include Space Chasers, a Roy Burdine property that Vorhees describes as "Thomas the Tank Engine in outer space," and Pirate School, an animated series. 

The TMNT 25th Anniversary Movie debuted on the CW Network Nov. 21. 

Writer: Elena Stevenson
Source: Darcy Vorhees, DarcyVDesign
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