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Archive for the ‘Creative Talent’ Category

Vic Wanchana

Sunday, April 28th, 2013

Tell us a little about who you are. When did you begin creating and working in the design and animation industry?
I’m Wanchana Intrasombat but it is easier if you call me “Vic”. I was born in Bangkok, Thailand in 1986 which is where I currently am living. I am a 2D and concept artist. My services include concepts for animation, game, illustration and character design. I graduated in 2008 in the category of Fine Art (traditional painting, oil color). From 2009 until now, I began teaching myself how to use the various digital painting tools and then received many opportunities to work on many design and animation projects.

What was the one key moment in your career that you feel really defined you?
I think that defining moment came for me when I received an award from the CG community at CG Society for “2D concept art and illustration”.  Before that I had done a lot of personal paintings to improve my portfolio without any job/project offered but after I received the award, there were so many projects and opportunities offered to me. And my first opportunity to work in the animation industry came through an animation commercial when EmberLab presented me with a very important opportunity for both my spirit and my career in animation to be an art director for a Coca-Cola and McDonald commercial “Crabs and Penguins”.

Where do you work now, what are you working on?
I’m still working as a freelance artist and live in Thailand. I am  looking forward to being a part of an animation studio in USA one day. I’m currently working as a visual development artist and character designer with so many studios such as EmberLab, Anya Animation and KiwiUp to name a few on projects such as an Animation-Feature film (un-public) , Fanta, KFC, and Pizza Hut animation and game commercials that I believe will be released soon.

What has been the most rewarding aspect or project you’ve worked on to date?
The most rewarding aspect for me is the experience that I gain when working as a team that has joined together with so many talented artists on the same project. I think both opportunities and experience are very important in this industry and I always practice to improve my skills so as to be prepared and ready for every opportunity that may or may not come. (more…)

Jean Gillmore Designer

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

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Jean Gillmore began her animation career in the traditional 2-D world, working on network animated television shows (Hanna-Barbera, Marvel Productions) as a show model designer and/or supervisor for several seasons.  She made the jump to theatrical animated features in 1989, where she worked 10 years as a staff visual development artist for Walt Disney Feature Animation. Her contributions to the Disney Renaissance era of feature animated films is huge and her credits list is long.  If you look behind the animation you will find that most of the characters from that era were designed by Jean Gillmore.

More recent work has seen Jean illustrating books, creating orthographics of characters and costumes for CG direct-to-video projects and even designing a set for a (critically-acclaimed) one-woman theater piece, “The Dance of the Lemons”.  Most recently in animation, however, she has worked as a CG COSTUMER for an animated feature development project at Blue Sky Studios on the east coast.

Over her long career, she has also worked in the development of various puppet show costumes and sets, toy design, and with the merchandise/ publishing concerns of retail venues (Walt Disney Consumer Products). Jean works in a variety of media with numerous applications, and is always open to breaking new creative ground.

Enjoy a rare interview with this ecclectic, bright and extremely talented lady.

To see more work by Jean Gillmore please visit her website at: http://www.jeangillmore.com

Phil Nibbelink Animation Director

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

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Phil Nibbelink has been drawing his whole life. He studied art at Western Washington State University and film in Rome Italy’s Il Instituto di Stato per la Cinematografia. After attending the Disney Animation Program at California Institute of the Arts, Phil joined Disney Studios to animate on The Fox and the Hound, The Black Cauldron and Basil the Great Mouse Detective, Oliver and Company and Roger Rabbit. In 1989 he teamed up with Steven Spielberg to direct American Tail, We’re Back and Casper. Phil went on to start his own company where he wrote, directed and animated 3 features, Puss in Boots, Leif Ericson, and his third feature Romeo & Juliet: Sealed With A Kiss, won him a 1st place and ‘Best-in-Show’ award at the Best-in-the-SouthWest film festival. Phil had too much fun teaming up with his old college roommate David Greenblatt to create the graphic novel Ultima Thula.

Enjoy listening to this great talent discussing about a time when we were Drawn2gether and you can meet him at the CTN Animation Expo (CTN-X) on Nov 20-22, 2009

You can see more of Phil Nibbelink’s  work and contact him directly at:

Creative Talent Network and   www.philnibbelink.com

Harald Siepermann Master Character Designer

Friday, April 24th, 2009

A Conversation with Harald Siepermann
“Germans ARE Funny!”
By Rhett Wickham

I have this far reaching, overly academic theory that goes something like this: the European influence on animation is growing increasingly absent in America and as a result, we’re getting less and less visually exciting.

Disney in the late 1930’s and pre-war 1940’s was undeniably under the influence of artists and illustrators like Gustave Tenggren and Kay Nielsen and Ferdinand Horvath, who had a powerful and visible impact on Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio and Fantasia.  And, yes, there is a similar influence on live action with the work of directors like Alfred Hitchcock, Fritz Lang, Josef Von Sternberg and James Whale, but I’d argue that no other single studio product exhibited that influence in the same way as Disney’s films from this period.

So it is, or was, that a great wealth of European talent flowed into the industry in the United States after the production of Who Framed Roger Rabbit, and studios like Disney and DreamWorks benefited from the gifts of artists like Darek Gogol, Hans Bacher, Paul and Gaëtan Brizzi, Carlos Grangel and that German guy who worked on Tarzan..oh, come on…you know his name.   Hans…no, Heinrich…oh shoot, hang on…HARALD!  That’s it.  Harald Siepermann! (more…)

The Black Hole Memories by Dorse Lanpher

Tuesday, March 10th, 2009

The Black Hole Memories
From the autobiography of Dorse A. Lanpher
“Flyin’ Chunks and Other Things to Duck”

Copyright © Cinefantastique

In early 1979 I was working at Walt Disney Productions on The Black Hole, a live action film with animated effects. The spectacular success of George Lucas’s brilliant Star Wars inspired Walt Disney Studio’s to do a film which would cash in on that sci fi success. I had just finished working on the hand drawn animated effects for Pete’s Dragon, another live action film. Don Bluth who had directed the 2D animation for Pete’s Dragon was talking about leaving the studio with John Pomeroy and Gary Goldman to do the animated film, The Secret of NIMH.  Don had mentioned that he would like for me to join them as special effects supervisor. Even though I was intrigued by Don’s offer I felt I had a professional obligation to finish The Black Hole and was having a good time doing it. Jack Buckley, a long time Disney effects animator, had retired as effects department head and left me in charge as the animation effects department supervisor. Ted Kierscey, an effects animator, was helping me animate the laser blasts, rocket engine exhaust, and various visual effects that at the time, before computers, only 2D animation could accomplish. Don Paul was just out of the Eric Larson animation training group and he was assisting us. There was even some input from Brad Bird, later to become a successful director for Pixar Studios. During a conversation with Brad he revealed his successful directorial future when he expressed some ideas about how I might animate the laser beams when the actors fire their hi tech weapons. The production designer of the film was Peter Ellenshaw. A successful fine artist who was honored as a Disney Legend in 1993. (more…)

Interview with Susan McKinsey-Goldberg

Tuesday, March 10th, 2009

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SUSAN MC KINSEY GOLDBERG is a renowned animation Art Director and Designer whose work has graced numerous feature films and theme park attractions in the United States, England, and Hong Kong. Her interest in the medium of animation reflects her encyclopedic knowledge of many other artistic disciplines, including Japanese art and textile design, children’s book illustration, costume design, wildlife painting and drawing, and graphic design for film and print.

In school, Susan won many local painting awards and competitions. Her interest in the animal kingdom (both artistic and conservation-oriented) led her to the Florida chapter of the National Audubon Society, where she served as Editor of their magazine. During her college years she received a scholarship and attended the fledgling Character Animation program at California Institute of the Arts. There she was taught first-hand by several of the great Disney animation artists, including director Jack Hannah, designer and story artist T. Hee, layout artist Ken O’ Connor, concept artist Elmer Plummer, and designer Bill Moore, who was among the first to notice Susan’s flair for design and color. This was followed soon by a stint in New York, working as a Background Artist for legendary MGM animator Jack Zander at his popular commercial production house, Zander’s Animation Parlour. It was during this time that she met her future husband Eric, on holiday from working in London, and since their marriage they have often had the enjoyable opportunity to work as a team on a variety of animation projects. (more…)

Interview with Steven E. Gordon

Tuesday, March 10th, 2009

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Born and raised in Southern California, STEVEN E. GORDON has been a professional in the animation industry since 1977.  He was hired while still in High School by Ralph Bakshi Productions to work on the feature film “Lord of the Rings”. It wasn’t long before Steve was given more responsibility and by 1982 he was Animation Director and Key Animator on the Bakshi / Frazetta feature “Fire and Ice”.  Steve’s next job was a five year stint at Disney Pictures animating on “The Black Cauldron” and other films. For the next 12 years he worked on and off with Rich Animation on a series of direct-to-videos, pioneering character layout – the industry standard, and was Animation Director / Character Designer / Key Animator on “The Swan Princess. He then continued Directing and Character Design on the highly rated “X-Men: Evolution” TV series for Kids WB where he not only directed on the first two seasons, but also did every single character design himself for all four seasons with only the help of a clean-up artist. He then went to Dreamworks and worked in the story dept. and received a credit for his work on the huge Hit Shrek 2. After Dreamworks he went to work for Marvel/Lionsgate Productions as a director and a character designer on the Ultimate Avengers. He also directed a direct-to-video for Stan Lee and co-directed the direct-to-video sequel to “Happily N’ever After” for Lionsgate and is currently a director of the new series Wolverine and the X-Men.

Here is a rare interview with one of the top 5 animators in animation today who has worked with every TV and feature animation studio that is in Southern California.

Craig Elliott

Monday, January 19th, 2009

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CRAIG ELLIOT has been interested in the artistic for as long as he can remember. Born in a farm and air force town in California, Craig’s family moved to what is now Silicon Valley California where he grew up. Back then, most of the valley was fruit orchards and open space.  The experience of walking home from school through a shower of blossoms or playing in the creek as a child fostered Craig’s love of nature. Dioramas with sculpted and painted figures often depicting the nature that surrounded him, along with drawing were Craig’s first art forms.


Lunch with Bill Melendez

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008

Bill Melendez

Holiday Traditions, we all have our rituals right? The things we do with our families every year without fail. My family gets together and we enjoy my Mom’s delicious handmade Tamales with a warm cup of Atole. Other families bust out the eggnog and cook up a turkey. While others like my roommate back in Art School had the Traditional Christmas Hot Tub party.

Then there’s the whole tree thing, the cookies, the shopping, the wrapping, the colorful lights, the cards, the goofy sweaters. Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby and David Bowie singing a duet of the Little Drummer boy. All wonderful stuff that brings families together.

After a while I came to realize the sleighload of Holiday traditions that our Animation Forefathers gave us. Just off the top of my head let’s see, Chuck Jones and his brilliant adaptation of Dr. Seuss’s masterpiece How the Grinch Stole Christmas, The Rankin Bass Stop motion Santa Claus, Rudolph, Frosty special. Epic! What about Yogi’s first Christmas huh? Killer! Mickey’s Christmas Carol.Gorgeous and Timeless. Mr Magoo’s Christmas Carol, I dare you not to laugh! And of course who could forget the Star wars Holiday Special, sure it only played once but once was enough for it to be burned into my memory banks forever. Thank you Nelvana for the animated introduction to Boba Fett! Lest we forget the Norelco commercial with Santa riding the electric shaver down the slope. Ahhhh good times. I love all of these shows and I hope someday when I have kids to share these animated treasures with them. (more…)

Bill Kroyer One of The First Computer Animators

Thursday, December 18th, 2008

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BILL KROYER is an award-winning director of animation and computer graphics commercials, short films, movie titles and theatrical films. Trained in classical hand-drawn animation at the Disney Studio, Bill was one of the first animators to make the leap to computer animation on Disney’s ground-breaking 1982 feature, “Tron.”

“There was no software for motion when we made Tron. It didn’t exist.” ~Bill Kroyer

Founding his own company, Kroyer Films, Inc., Bill and his wife Susan pioneered the technique of combining hand-drawn animation with computer animation. Bill was Director for the theatrical animated feature film “FernGully: The Last Rainforest” and for his Academy Award® nominated short film “Technological Threat” . (more…)

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