Greenbelt, MD 20771
Personal Url: http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/search/Person/LentzMichael.html
Michael is the Art Director for the Conceptual Image Lab at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Goddard campus. Michael provides guidance for the day-to-day creation of art and animation in the lab, with a focus on quality, scientific accuracy, and technical efficiency. Michael encourages artistic creativity and innovation throughout production, while also ensuring that all lab products maintain a common look and feel and standard of excellence. Under his guidance, the lab has established a new approach for project management, has gained productivity throughout the production pipeline, and has employed new techniques to showcase scientific data and spacecraft.
Prior to becoming the Art Director in 2016, Michael was a Lead Animator for the Conceptual Image Lab starting in 2010. In this role, Michael developed design concepts and completed dozens of animation projects for the lab. His focus on superior visual appearance and technical innovation advanced the reputation of the lab and resulted in a number of high-profile accomplishments. During his time with the lab, Michael has led or supported numerous animations to build awareness and understanding of NASA’s mission work.
Michael began his art and animation career in 1992 at the National Geographic Society, within the Television Art Department. He worked for and was mentored by a multi-Emmy Award winning Art Director for 10 years. In that position, Michael became an accomplished Artist and Animator, developing visual elements for hundreds of projects. His work was featured in many Emmy Award winning shows, such as National Geographic ‘Explorer’ and ‘Specials’. While at National Geographic Television, he collaborated with the Cartographic Division and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to help produce a satellite image of the Earth. This image was used in National Geographic Television Productions and the 7th Edition National Geographic Atlas. Michael was also responsible for transitioning the Art Department into a fully functioning digitally-based production studio.
Following National Geographic Television, Michael owned his own Animation business from 2002 to 2010. During that time he created a wide-range of art and animation for clients such as: Discovery Channel, Smithsonian Channel, Animal Planet, National Geographic Channel, PBS, History Channel and NASA.
Michael has held a life-long appreciation of art and science. Michael began painting in the late 1990s, with a focus on science-related themes and visuals. Over the years, Michael has honed an abstract artistic style with the use of paints and other mixed media. In 2016, his work titled “Into the Void” was used as an album cover for the Canadian band “Decoded Feedback.” In 2006, “Theme from a Dream” and 2 other works were featured in the DC Art Expo. In 2005, Michael exhibited a piece titled “Progression I-IV,” using mixed media and expandable urethane foam that was shown at the DC Art Center in the 2x2 show.