Joe Castillo Is a Storyteller and a Sand Animation Artist

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Written by Tim Grable

August 9, 2017

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We all know that stories are often visual, audible or readable because this is how we are used to getting in contact with them since we were little.

However, have you ever thought that stories could be created out of sand as well?

We know – it sounds weird, unheard of and uncommon to connect sand and stories, but Joe Castillo proves that this combination is incredibly powerful.

You may have heard about Joe because he was a finalist on America’s Got Talent. He is a storyteller and a sand animation artist.

Until now, people all over the world have seen him live on all seven continents and over 43 countries. He has also performed on NBC, CBS, BBC, Fox, PBS, and ESPN. One of his biggest accomplishments, however, is the fact that he is the creator of SandStory. It is a unique way of storytelling which uses sand art.

We hope we picked your curiosity because we are about to uncover more details about Joe’s background and his shows.

Joe Castillo Is a Storyteller and a Sand Animation Artist

Joe Castillo’s Path

Joe is no stranger to the entertainment world, as we have already established. He has performed for world leaders, including President Bush, President Clinton or Pope Francis.

Castillo was born in Mexico City where he was surrounded by the art and eclectic culture of an international city.  He is now the world’s premier sand animation performer.

Art peaked his interest from an early age. His passion for art and storytelling was developed from the time he was a teenager when Joe created his own comic book series. First, he attended Ringling School of Art and then he graduated from Florida Bible College.

His career began in advertising.  He started his own business called The Advertising Library, an agency in Knoxville, Tennessee. After being in the advertising business for more than 20 years, Castillo decided to become a sand artist, which allowed him to express himself and send messages through this unique way of storytelling.  Joe’s advertising experience has to lead him towards becoming a motivational performing artist.

Storytelling Through Words and Sand Art

His vision was different than the one other artists had, so he inspired to create a new and unique way to express himself.

Joe Castillo has been a talented storyteller since he was a teenager. Now, he is simply a master of telling stories, not just through sand art, but with words as well.

He came up with creative ways to use his talent as an artist to enhance his storytelling skills. With a whiteboard and a marker, Joe can combine oratory and artistic gifts to inspire or entertain any audience.  He does it in both English and Spanish.

Sand Art is also known as Sand Animation, Sand Painting or SandStory. 

Joe uses his hands, sand, a light table, and music as a medium to create art and stories. He creates different scenes which are displayed on a screen so that the audience can see everything that he is doing.

Music is employed so that the scenes appear to be fluid and it makes the transition smoother. The amazing thing about this form of storytelling is that the story does not need to be put into words.

The scenes he creates using the sand are displayed on a screen so that the audience can see everything that’s happening.

Thanks to the music, the scenes appear fluid, and it leaves the impression that you are sort of watching a movie. Even though the story has been introduced in all 7 continents, over 43 countries, and into 35 different languages. His popularity made it clear that sand art is a universal way to tell a story.  His story is told only in one: sand art. It is universal, and everyone seems to understand it.

Joe’s biggest passion, other than sand art, is to perform at corporate events. Banquets, new product launches, grand openings – you name it. He can take any corporate message and make it relatable to the audience that is in front of him.

This unique type of content stimulates the mind, captures the eye, the music engages the ears, and, most importantly, it grips anyone’s heart.

Back in 2011, Joe achieved a few big accomplishments.

First, he was asked to perform in the closing of the TEDActive Conference with his performance entitled “The Rediscovery of Wonder!”. Then, he also presented at TEDGlobal in Edinburgh, Scotland.

To top it all off, LPB partnered with Joe to create an original sand story for Turning the Tide. It was a documentary about Louisiana’s disappearing coast.

Joe Castillo Is More than a Sand Artist

Joe has been a master storyteller since he was a teenager when he created his first comic book. His passion for combining different arts to tell stories allowed him to perform for Fortune 500 Companies to help them promote a corporate message.

Moreover, his experience does not stop here because he is also a keynote speaker and a motivational performing artist.

He performed at various banquets, spoke at product launches, grand openings and other corporate events. His main gift is to take any message and make it resonate with the audience.

Joe even made it to the finals of America’s Got Talent, which made him even more popular in the entertainment industry.

Joe Castillo is quite an inspiring artist. In the end, we will just leave here a short video where he talks about his sand show.

Would you be interested in hiring him for your next corporate event? Don’t hesitate to get in touch if there are any other details we can provide you with. 

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