Want to watch a boatload of awesome shorts? Want to participate in one of the cooler emerging film festivals from the comfort of your own home?  Public voting for the Vimeo Festival + Awards is now open.  With 156 selected entries across 13 categories there's plenty to check out between now and the festival itself.  Want a taste of the offerings?  Check this out:

We previously featured this intriguing short by Ruari Robinson when it first came out, but shortly thereafter it was password protected.  No more!  You can now appreciate and vote for Blinky™ as part of the festival's Narrative category:

And I really enjoyed this mind-bending animated short by Malcolm Sutherland, Umbra:

Check out more of the Animation offerings here.

As the Vimeo folks point out - you can only vote for one entry per category each day (if you want to vote for the same short 10 days in a row, or vote for 3 different shorts over 3 days, that's fine).  So watch and vote at your leisure!  I'm working my way through the Narrative and Animation categories before I start voting, and I must say it's really great to see what our peers are putting out.  So far I've seen some very cool stuff (beyond the shorts above), and it's definitely getting my own creative juices and inspiration going.

And remember, if you're more into music videos, documentaries, or re-mix videos, there's a category for each, along with eight others.  With 12 entries per category, chances are that if you look around, there will be something that floats your boat.

For more details, check out the Vimeo Staff blog's post.  Have you gotten a chance to check the entries out?  Any shorts stand out to you?  What categories will you be focusing on?

[via Vimeo Staff Blog]