Patrick Reyntens

What is your name and your current occupation?
I’m Patrick Reyntens, an animator/designer from Antwerp, Belgium.
What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I checked tiny parts for helicopters. I had to push a button if the part was faulty, but I never pushed the button. The company went bankrupt 3 months after I left. I once had to crush slightly deformed potato chips for pigs. For half a year or so I gave drawing classes to prisoners. I once made a caricature of a prisoner. Him in a ballerina outfit. Afterwards I found out he was a pedophile…I guess that’s why that was the last time I saw him. The last lesson, one of the prisoners wanted to give me a goodbye party and dropped a bag of marijuana on the table and started to distribute joints to his buddies. That was weird, but what could I do, they were already in prison…

What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
I worked on a show called ‘Staines down drains’ in New Zealand. The show was really funny. I worked on numerous projects after that as an animator and designer. Please check out check out my blog to see what I’ve been up to.

How did you become interested in animation?
I have been drawing like mad when I was a kid. I drew my own comics. They were mainly about people getting killed in different ways.I remember making drawings on top of each other. After a couple of minutes nothing but a big blue ball (I was drawing with a blue ball pen) would remain…When I had to choose what master degree I wanted to get I chose art history. Basically you had to bullshit about other peoples work and I felt that I’d rather be on the other side of the table so I chose to go to a film school to get my master in animation.
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business? 
I’m from Belgium, one of the weirdest countries on earth. We are like Canada, divided into two parts, a Dutch part and a French one and we never agree. That’s why we still don’t have a government after more than a year. But I can tell you, a country works perfectly without a government.  I first started to teach art and then I got an offer to work on an animated series for an English studio from Bristol. I could work from home in Flash. I quit my daytime job and went a full time animator from then on.
What’s a typical day like for you with regards to your job?
I like to start the day with some blog searching to get inspired. Then I try to tackle the hard stuff first so I can take it easy in the late afternoon when I get sleepy.
What part of your job do you like best? Why?
The pre production and the rough animation. I love my rough animation and sketches more than my finished work. What I like about the company I work for now is that it is pretty easy going. I’m the only animator in the company but it also means that I have some not animation related jobs to do from time to time and that sucks monkey balls.
What part of your job do you like least? Why? 
 I guess I would have to say the polishing and the more technical side of animation. I have concentration issues and I start dreaming of frogs and breasts quiet easily…
What is the most difficult part for you about being in the business?
Competition is mad. You have tons of freaky young kids who are way more talented than you…Then again, I have a nice smile.
What kind of technology do you work with on a daily basis? 
I use a cintiq, toon boom animate, after effects and Photoshop. I did a character animation course for 3 months in Denmark guided by Pixar animators but I don’t do 3D animation a lot at my current job. It’s mainly digital 2D.
In your travels, have you had any brushes with animation greatness? 
I was taught by Rich Quade, one of the early animators at Pixar. He did the first tests with Woody for Toy Story!  I once
met Yoshimichi Tamura at a lecture. He’s an extremely talented animator who worked on Tarzan, Hercules, Hunchback, shark tale, Princess and the Frog etc… People like that are very inspiring.
Describe a tough situation you had in life.
I once had to share something with someone and it turned out I ended up with less than I had before. Sucks…
Any side projects or you’re working on or hobbies you’d like to share details of?
In order to remain sane I have a cartoon blog. Please visit it. It is very sad and a bit embarrassing so you will feel much better about yourself after visiting the blog:  Anyway I have lots of fun with the blog and I plan on animating some of the cartoons. I’m currently working on one!
Any unusual talents or hobbies like tying a cherry stem with your tongue or metallurgy?
I can kill God with a single thought and I play guitar!
Is there any advice you can give for an aspiring animation student or artist trying to break into the business?
Don’t steal my job or I will kick your ass! Other than that…Be passionate, if you don’t have passion for it, you probably have passion for something else. Find out what it is and go for it, even if it is beekeeping.
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