Viewseum: Doug Vitarelli

Posted by on Sep 11, 2020 in Viewseum | No Comments

Doug Vitarelli has worked over 20 years as a 3D artist in NYC.  “Lives uptown, works downtown,” is his motto!  Doug is an animator, teacher, small business owner and designer.  Starting in 1987 with Michael Sporn, he then moved into 3D computer animation.  Doug first heard about ASIFA-East while he was studying film/animation at RISD (1988).  He then received his masters in experimental animation at CalArts (1995).  Doug has worked as an animator, designer and director for commercials, broadcast spots, cartoons, film, books, a planetarium and more!  Past studios include NBC, Click 3X, Curious Pictures, MTV, the WWE and more!

Doug Vitarelli also teaches at the college level. Currently an adjunct at NYU/Tisch, in the past he was full-time at SUNY Fredonia and part-time at Pratt Institute.  His side hustles include a 3D-printing business and a solo design/animation studio, specializing in 3D animated recreations.  Doug’s work has been presented at MoMA, won an award at Annecy, and even won an Emmy!  A fun fact about Doug: “i don’t use caps in emails.” 


Dominick The Donkey is one of Doug’s latest works, a fun and simple holiday celebration.  He writes “This animation is an homage to my Italian American upbringing and culture.  The design is based on food labels that everyone who grew up like me will recognize. The setting is the Amalfi Coast. While it may be one of the most beautiful areas of the world, for me it’s always been where I visited cousins and bought ceramics.  Why a blue donkey? Because on a visit to E. Rossi & Company, one of New York’s best stores and a must see in Little Italy, the owner Ernie, who is an amazing resource of Italian and Italian/American music, told me that Dominick was originally blue. And to prove it, he show me a t-shirt with a blue donkey!”

Doug Vitarelli has lots of new ideas floating around and would like to get started on 2D games and augmented reality games.  He just upgraded his computer to 64 gigs of RAM, so now he really has “no excuses” but to get to work!   Doug recommends you check out e→d* films, a Montreal-based animation studio and digital tools maker.  And you can find Doug on Instagram


Doug Vitarelli has been a upstanding member of ASIFA-East since 1988!  If you too would like to be interviewed on our member-spotlight, apply here!