Academic Profile

Academic Profile

Prof Ben Alvin Shedd

Professor, School of Art, Design and Media

Phone: +65 65148374
Office: ART 03 04
Prof Ben Alvin Shedd

Professor, Digital Filmmaking/Documentary at the School of Art, Design and Media, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.

Academy Award winning filmmaker Ben Shedd has been a professional film & video director/producer writer since 1970. He has been producing and creating award-winning films and videos of social and intellectual interest since he began his production career and specializes in making science and technology documentaries. Ben has produced and directed 33 films and videos, including 3 IMAX productions, during his 43 year production career.

Since 1979 in parallel with his production work, Ben has taught University courses in film production, independent film business, and visual design at seven universities, including his alma mater the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, the California Institute of the Arts, Art Center College of Design, the University of New Mexico’s College of Fine Arts, Princeton University’s Department of Computer Science, and Boise State University’s School of Communication and Extended Studies. Ben was the 1989/1990 PNM Professor of Media Arts at the University of New Mexico, Senior Research Scholar and Lecturer at Princeton University, a Professor of the Practice at Boise State University, and now Professor Digital Filmmaking/Documentary at ADM NTU.

Ben’s film and video productions have received dozens of awards, including a Peabody Award/Shared for the NOVA PBS series and the Academy Award, Best Documentary Short Subject 1978, for his first independent production THE FLIGHT OF THE GOSSAMER CONDOR, the filmed-as-it-happened story of creating the first successful human-powered airplane in human history. Ben’s USC School of Cinematic Art’s Master Degree Thesis science film MARS MINUS MYTH received the ORBIT Award for Best Science Film in the World 1973 from the Australian and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science and THE FLIGHT OF THE GOSSAMER CONDOR film was the co-recipient of this same award in 1979. The Make-A-Wish film STAR WAITERS was selected from 13,200 wishes granted in 2009 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of America’s Infinite Wish Award, its top award for the wish project that best brought a community together to grant a child’s wish.

Ben’s films and videos have been funded by several non-profit and government foundations, including production grants from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the National Science Foundation USA, the National Endowment for the Humanities USA, Public Television Funders, the Polaroid Foundation, the Science Museum of Minnesota, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Idaho. Ben was Co-Principal Investigator for the first National Science Foundation production grant awarded for an IMAX film [TROPICAL RAINFOREST] and Co-PI on the 1999 National Science Foundation Conference Grant on Giant Screen Films and Lifelong Learning.
Research Interests
Prof Ben's research concerns creating effective science and technology media about very large and very small phenomena seen on displays from handheld size to multi-story high screens. He received a 1989 summer long Residential Creativity Fellowship from the Alden B. Dow Creativity Center, Northwood University where he began his EXPLODING THE FRAME research comparing small screen and giant screen imagery and creating a new filmic language for effective giant screen production. This research began for producing IMAX giant screen films and continues today with ever larger high-resolution digital screens and full dome immersive presentations where the edges of the screen frame are outside our field of vision.
Current Projects
  • Framing the Virtual: Investigating virtual cinematography in real-time animation filmmaking
  • From Print to Digital: Re-Defining Narrativity for Interactive Digital Media
  • SUSTAINING THE FUTURE Development project for 12 part MOOC
  • ‘Animated Installations And Other Creative Solutions To Increase Cultural Heritage Experiences In The Underground Time Corridor Of XIXIA Tomb Museum (Yinchuan, Ningxia Hui autonomous Region, PRC)'
Selected Publications
  • Luo S.-S., B. A. Shedd, A. Nanetti. (2018). Enhancing the Experience of the Western Xia Imperial Tombs Heritage Site (PRC, Ningxia) through Animated Installations. SCIRES-IT (SCIentific RESearch and Information Technology), 8(1).

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