What is your name and your current occupation?
Maurice Morgan, Freelance Designer/illustrator
What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
Nothing really out of the norm. Got robbed twice at gun point working at two different food joints as a kid, but that’s L.A.
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
The Angry Beavers – Great looking show, fun designs, great crew, crazy hours & politics, lots of martini’s, lots of laughs and I drew my butt off.Invader Zim – Another great looking show, pencil heavy; got cramps in my hands & forearms from all the noodling in the design work.Kid Notorious – A nightmare production that shaved off ten years of my life but I’m damn proud of the work we all put into it. Thanks for the martini’s and the memories, Bob. Flavio – Not only did I love the flavio character but I loved the quirkiness of the background designs. And besides, I know the knucklehead behind the mayhem and we go way back.
How did you become interested in animation?
I’ve had an interest in animation since I was about seven years old and have dabbled in it since.
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
Los Angeles. I got into the business through a close contact who opened a few doors for me. I originally started out as a designer in the software game industry. The industry at the time was still in its infancy and technology was changing rapidly as well as the technological landscape. A very volatile time for entrepreneurs and investors. I got into television animation just before the dot-com bubble popped.
What’s a typical day like for you with regards to your job?
Ebb and Flow. Its either full on for days on end or slow going.
What part of your job do you like best? Why?
The freedom of being independent, getting paid to draw and to be creative. Being a freelancer I can work on a variety of jobs and meet new people.
What part of your job do you like least? Why?
Crunch time & all nighters. As with any production you’re going to have crazy deadlines or heavy workloads that’ll suck every bit of your soul out of you.
What is the most difficult part for you about being in the business?
Avoiding burnout. It’s easy to do if you don’t guard your time wisely.
What kind of technology do you work with on a daily basis?
I do all of my design work on a Cintiq using Photoshop and Sketchbook Pro.
In your travels, have you had any brushes with animation greatness?
Several times when I worked in-house. Too many to name or remember.
Describe a tough situation you had in life.
In 2009 & 2010 my best friend, my mother, my grandmother and three other close friends passed away suddenly all within a year. Needless to say I was in a hole of depression and found it hard to get on with the daily rigors of life. My craft suffered a bit.
Any side projects or you’re working on or hobbies you’d like to share details of?
When I get the chance I paint or write music. Other than that it’s surfing.
Is there any advice you can give for an aspiring animation student or artist trying to break into the business?
Be versatile creatively and stylistically. Animation and its production process moves in subtle evolutionary jumps. Don’t sell yourself short, keep a positive outlook and hone your networking skills. In this industry it’s all about who you know and timing. Trust and talent comes in second which will ensure you a positive reputation. There are loads of talented people out there, but only a handful holding positions while a major portion of production is outsourced overseas.
Such a talented man… Flavio would never have looked so good without your help buddy! Heck, I’ve TRIED to hire you many times since then but you’re in such high demand, you keep saying NO!