The Edge of Imagination Station is great for single or multi-day workshops, team building or family day activities, and is a fun addition to any indoor or outdoor event!

Have you ever wanted to bring your art to life? Johnny Villarreal and The Edge of Imagination Station are here to help! With ten years’ experience teaching in the community, Johnny has shown users of all ages, abilities, and skill levels how to create animated sequences and short stories. His workshops cover the basics of stop motion animation and topics such as storyboarding, character development, shot selection, audio recording, and post production.

All of Johnny’s stop motion animation workshops incorporate some mix of chalk, paper, clay, and found objects.

Available programs include:

  • A drop-in activity where participants learn the basics of stop motion animation and create their own animated sequences
  • A guided storytelling workshop where participants learn how to organize and narrate a short story
  • Stop Motion (PLUS) Workshops where participants will learn about stop motion and incorporate additional processes and materials such as watercolor, cardboard sculpture, or special effects/post production
  • Promotional Video Production where teens in your community work together to create a promotional video for your organization
  • Creative Content Development Workshop where you work with Johnny to plan and develop original creative content for your organization
Workshop at Art Outside 2014

Workshop at Art Outside 2014

Length:  A minimum of three hours is necessary for an event.  Workshops that include storyboard production and set/character design can be formatted to fit a full day or extend over multiple visits and vary depending on group size.  Pre-production files are available so that you can work with your students to prepare beforehand.   I can also visit once to get the project started and then return for production day(s) when ready.

Recommended group size:  The Station can serve small groups for private engagements, or the masses associated with larger events.

Recommended ages:   Students as young as 5 can successfully interact with the software.  Students ages 7 and up can develop stories that require writing and reading.  Older students and adults can develop technical skills and engage in more complex projects.

Important:  Time allowed and age range is considered in the formatting of the program so mixing of age groups is discouraged in cases other than family day activities.

Number of programs:  This is very flexible and depends on the situation.  Multiple groups can be served in a day and/or over multiple visits.

Location:  Libraries, cafeterias, auditoriums, classrooms or other crafted learning environments are workable spaces.  Outdoor setups are possible if they are covered for protection from weather and light.  Bright, direct light can cause overexposure of the images.

Tech needs:  All of the necessary equipment is provided, all that is needed is an electrical outlet.  Additional projectors/media carts, and screens can be incorporated if available.

A guided workshop typically includes:

  • Brainstorming session, examples, and demos
  • Research – The Station can be used in any subject to tell a story or explain facts/processes
  • Literacy skills – Story/Storyboard writing and reading for narration
  • Math skills – conversion of timed scenes into frames per second
  • Creating sets, props, and characters
  • Audio/video production



Pricing depends on a number of variables.

Performance fee:

  • Includes group discussions, pre-production/planning, set up, use, breakdown of equipment, and post-production of the work created.
  • Pricing starts at $500 for a half day (3 hours) for public performance and school related events.
  • Weekly rates are available upon request.


  • $75 – $120 per night
  • This can be paid by The Edge of Imagination Station or by your organization
  • Mid-level accommodations, such as Best Western, or Holiday Inn, are preferred.
  • If the distance to travel is more than five hours, lodging for the night before AND after may be required


  • Mileage is figured using the current rate, which is 53.5/mi.  Distance is figured with a starting point near downtown Austin.

Other expenses:

  • Reimbursement for meals is not required, however lunch is greatly appreciated


Save up to 50% with artist grants

Grants from the Texas Commission on the Arts could cover up to 50% of The Edge of Imagination Station’s total fee!

Arts Respond Performance Support Grants” provide support to nonprofit organizations in Texas interested in booking Johnny and other artists from the TCA Touring Artist Roster. Here are a few facts you need to know:

  • Applications are funded on a sliding scale (typically 25-50%) of contracted fees.  Support is based on TCA’s available funds.
  • Maximum award is 50% of the total fee, including all expenses.
  • The greatest awards typically go to groups in rural and/or socio-economically disadvantaged areas.  Special programs are available for groups in the Rio Grande Valley, Midland/Odessa & El Paso areas.

Application deadlines:

  • May 1 for performances between June 15-Aug. 31
  • August 1 for performances occurring Sept. 1-Dec. 14

How to apply for a grant:

If your organization doesn’t have one already, you’ll need to get a user ID for the TCA website and online grant applications at You will need to provide your organization’s federal tax ID #, proof of non-profit status and a few other pieces of information.

Once you have your user ID and password, sign in and get started here.

PLEASE NOTE: If you’re wanting to hire a performer, YOU are the PRESENTER.  The person presenting the program is called the ARTIST (that’s Johnny/The Edge of Imagination Station). This confuses nearly everyone when they first look into arts grants!