let us introduce ourselves

About CMAI

CMAI has been set up to address the gap between the skills gained in Education and bridge the gap with what employers within the creative industries require today from new entrants.

We are a team of industry professionals, who have spent the last 3 years developing our courses in conjunction with the major studios in Ireland, we want to ensure we address and go some way to fill the skills gaps that our industry has identified.

Using the latest technologies and pipelines along with tutors working at senior level in the industry, our mission is to give students the best introduction to the practical skills and tools that the industry requires.

Meet your Educators

CMAI’s Educators

Our educators / instructors are seasoned industry professionals who are not only deeply passionate about their craft but also about nurturing the next generation of emerging creatives. They have decades of hands-on experience in studios around the world as well as Ireland. Our experts actively contribute to the curriculum development and continually strive to improve the content and experience for our participants. What sets them apart is their active involvement in the industry, ensuring that they bring the latest industry developments right into our classrooms.

Scott Ramsay

Animation Director at Giant Animation – 3d animation Tutor

Hailing from Scotland, Scott brings a decade’s worth of animation experience to his role in Giant. As Animation Director, Scott uses his experience to develop workflows, tools and a culture that produces beautiful animation, ensures we meet our targets and nurtures the well-being of all our animators.

Donal Nolan

Head of VFX at Egg VFX – Tutor Introduction to Composting

Donal started off his career in VFX in Dublin back in the late 1990s initially as a 3D artist. After completing a degree in production design, he went on to the UK earning a master’s in VFX where he specialised in FX and Compositing. He has since worked all over the world on collaborating on such projects as the Harry Potter, James Bond and Marvel franchises, various independent features as well as many TV and Advertising projects for some of the world’s leading content providers.

He has provided VFX for such names as Warner Bros, 20th Century, Fox, Netflix, Apple TV, Hulu, Disney, Amazon, DC, BBC, Sky, Sony, Lionsgate and many more. Over the past two decades, Donal has trained VFX artists in companies within the UK, Canada, Australia and Ireland, many have now gone on to collaborate and build successful careers in studios worldwide as top artists and VFX Supervisors.

Trevor Boden

Senior Instructor Avid – Tutor Avid Media Composer

An early adopter of Avid Media Composer I set up and co-owned an avid-based offline editing facility “Cinecontact Facilities” in Soho for ten years. I have delivered Avid training courses from Avid’s earliest days in the UK, including, in the role of Avid Master Instructor, training and certifying over a thousand Avid Certified Instructors in professional training companies, broadcast companies and universities in the UK, throughout Europe, the US, the Middle East, South Africa, Australia. India and China.

Virginie Lavallee

Founder of The Happy Producers – Tutor Production management bootcamp

Virginie is a Film and TV Producer with 15 years of experience in live-action and CG animation. Her films have been screened in festivals worldwide, such as the Cannes Film Festival and the Busan International Film Festival. She has worked on some of the most exciting properties in the world with partners like Disney, HBO, Netflix, and Ubisoft. She is also co-founder of The Happy Producers, where she teaches production crews the mindset, processes, and methodologies for low-stress, high-efficiency everyday production

Louis – Philippe Vermette

Founder at The Happy Producers – Tutor Production management bootcamp

Louis-Philippe has been working in the animation industry for over 25 years. He has held many roles, starting his career as an artist before becoming a team lead, producer, and member of higher management. He is a certified leadership coach that helps artists step into leadership roles and create inclusive and healthy team cultures without compromising productivity. Inspired by his passion for the animation industry and professional development, Louis-Philippe co-founded The Happy Producers.

Andrew Rea

College lecturer & VFX professional – Tutor Introduction to Compositing

Andrew is a compositing, animation, VFX and rugby enthusiast with a background in Multimedia but a love for moving things on screen eventually brought him to complete a Masters in Digital Effects at the NCCA, Bournemouth in 2012.

From there, he worked in a variety of post-production, animation and VFX companies, mostly as a compositor, and always enjoyed trying to help junior artists with their problems, which led him to try teaching, with stints in Ballyfermot, courses with Screenskills Ireland and eventually full-time in TUS between Limerick & Clonmel across several animation, VFX, design & film making courses.

who are CMAI?

Our Team

CMAI core management team is made up of a broad cross-section of very experienced Industry professionals. We bring many decades of experience working in the industry across all areas from Creative, Production to Technical and Financial.

We have been at the coal face of the Animation, VFX, post-production and live-action industry for many years. We continue to be heavily involved in all sectors so we are very aware of how the industry is evolving and what the needs are for the studios. This helps us build and develop the right courses to give emerging talent the best chance to succeed in their chosen career.

Brian Gilmore

Course Director CMAI

Brian Gilmore is a 30+ year animation veteran that has seen the industry transform from Analog to Digital in his career. Having started out in Murakami Wolf Dublin working on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles he has travelled the world working on big budget movies and TV series (Inc. Space Jam & Asterix). He spent most of his time in Ireland (20 years) working for Brown Bag Films in multiple roles. Following that he spent 2.5 years building a feature film studio for Boulder Media/ Hasbro to produce the CG feature film My Little Pony – A New Generation released 2021. For the next 3 years, Brian has worked with TU Dublin managing the CG apprenticeship as well as consulting with Screen Skills Ireland and other Industry training ventures. He also continues to work in the industry as a consultant with some of the top animation studios around like Cartoon Saloon and Aardman. For the few years Brian has been focused on developing CMAI as a commercial training venture. Leading it as the industry expert and building its slate of training courses.

Bryan Malone

CMAI Founder / Business Affairs

With a career spanning several decades, his journey began in the early 90s as a graphic designer with a role at a computer-based training company. However, it was his subsequent venture into the media and entertainment industry that truly defined his path. As the visionary founder of Tyrell, he has been at the helm for the past 23 years, spearheading organic growth and setting a remarkable precedent in the UK & Ireland. His unwavering respect for both customers and suppliers is underpinned by a profound understanding of their distinct needs. Continuously driven by innovation, he remains dedicated to furnishing the Media & Entertainment Industry’s foremost brands with cutting-edge products and ingenious solutions.

Lynn Keegan

Chief Operating Officer

Lynn Keegan has been in the industry since 2000. She started her career in Avid in Sandyford before moving to work in Avid London & Avid Singapore. Returning to Ireland in 2009, Lynn took up the role of office manager in Tyrell. Lynn has worked side by side with Bryan in Tyrell over the last 14 years, becoming the Operations Director in 2015.

When the opportunity arose to be involved with CMAI, Lynn was enthused with the new opportunity and the chance to make some positive changes in the industry.

Stephen Murnane

CMAI founder / Sales

Stephen Murnane has been 29 years in the industry. He started in Eurotek as a Sales Engineer in the days of tape-based edit suites and was there for the transition and move to Digital non-linear systems. He moved to Screen Scene in 2000 to head up their interactive department and for the next six years oversaw the digital requirements for them including working on many DVD titles for clients such as U2, Riverdance and Love/Hate. He moved to Piranha Bar in 2006 and oversaw the move from tape-based acquisition to digital acquisition and built the infrastructure and workflows to deal with it. He also got heavily involved in the 2D/3D pipeline.

He moved back to sales with TyrellCCT in 2017, as he felt that few people in sales to the creative industries really understood the workflows and pipelines in a modern studio. He has since built up a client base that is second to none in the Animation/VFX and post-production industries in Ireland.

He saw the frustration of studios and the appetite for training during the pandemic and spoke to the studios about what they really needed. Out of this CMAI was born, targeted training with industry tutors to train students in an environment that matches as much as possible the true working environment. It has been a pleasure to see so many of our students get roles within the industry and start their careers in what is a fast-growing,fun and exciting sector in Ireland.

Conor Harrington

CMAI Director / Advisor

Conor is a multi-award-winning producer with over 30+ years in the entertainment industry across development, production, marketing and financing.

Most recently, Conor co-founded Giant Animation Studios where he has transformed the company over the past 4 years into a major player in the animation industry with c.250 employees, fully producing CG animation in Dublin for clients including DreamWorks, Disney, Bento/FOX and Nickelodeon among others. In addition to service work, Conor has driven IP generation in the Studio with our first major project now under contract to Disney, and a co-production with Scholastic and Apple TV.

In a career that spans live action and animation Conor has produced and/or financed shows including: Mrs Browns Boys – D’Movie, Hardy Bucks, The Believer, An American Rhapsody, Onegin, An Awfully Big Adventure, Ballykissangel among many others. He has also acted as a promoter and dealmaker for a number of international film finance funds with partners including major US Studios.

Conor has a long-standing commitment to training and is proud to have this opportunity to bring a new generation of aspiring animators into the industry.

Lisa McDonald

CMAI Program Coordinator

Lisa McDonald is an award-winning Irish Animation Director and Visual Designer. As a versatile creative with extensive experience in film, animation and live events, she constantly works to develop her skills in storytelling, design, and production. Facilitating IADT’s portfolio courses to help aspiring animators to prepare for their academic and professional journeys.

In addition, Lisa has been involved in the visual design of Electric Picnic’s Transmission stage, Ireland’s largest music and arts festival and her work in film recognised by events such as the RTS Student Film Awards, Animation Dingle, among many others. Winning Best Animation, Spotlight Artist & Emerging Filmmaker in 2022. She works closely with YIFM as an Animation Workshop Facilitator and is keenly excited to continue her professional journey as she steps into the role of Program Coordinator for CMAI.

CMAI: your best choice

Why choose CMAI?

We know the industry isn’t short of ideas, talent, passion or hard work, we are also aware that the industry wants to become larger, so with all that in mind we seized the opportunity and created CMAI.

At CMAI, It is our core strategy to facilitate a seamless transition for graduates from full-time education to the professional working environment. We carefully craft the courses in collaboration with the industry itself, ensuring that all our students receive practical and industry-focused training.

The goal is to equip our students quickly with the necessary skills and knowledge to thrive in their chosen careers. To make sure we achieve this, all our courses are taught by experienced senior professionals who are actively engaged in the relevant creative industries today.

CMAI are supported by: