[Photo: Coalter Digital]
Finishing high school in Orlando, David Coalter had the itch to make films, but engineering was more practical. So after earning an engineering degree at Carnegie Mellon University, he joined communications contractor Harris in Melbourne. Unfulfilled, he studied 3-D computer animation and used it to bring to life technical designs and engineering concepts. He started his own company in 2007. Engineers loved the animations because they help non-engineers — particularly government bureaucrats and congressional representatives who make funding decisions — “get it.” One animation, for instance, visually depicts how Harris technologies provide protection for soldiers in a convoy in a city.
Coalter, 33, feels he’s scratched his filmmaking itch as he works behind the camera as director for the live-action shots that are later combined with the computer graphics. “Looking back, it makes sense, but it wasn’t like I had this plan laid out.”