What is your name and your current occupation?
Michael Leo Ramirez (aka MRAM) , Concept Artist / VFX Artist
What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
Process Server (Served Subpoenas) Probably would have had my a** handed to me a couple of times if I didn’t look intimidating. =)
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
Junior Designer on the “Fountains Of Bellagio” and “Mirage Volcano” casino projects for Steve Wynn in Las Vegas
How did you become interested in animation?
Saw Speed Racer for the first time in the early 1970′s
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
Los Angeles, CA and through friends
What’s a typical day like for you with regards to your job?
A LOT of illustrations, storyboards and animatics. Some of which are never used! But, ’tis the life of an animator, no?
What part of your job do you like best? Why?
Concept art! The creative juices are flowing like crazy during that creative period!
What part of your job do you like least? Why?
Rejected ideas and Rotoscoping! lol
What kind of technology do you work with on a daily basis?
Besides my trusty makers and smooth bristol board paper? ;) I like using After Effects, Photoshop and Cinema 4D
What is the most difficult part for you about being in the business?
In your travels, have you had any brushes with animation greatness?
I was fortunate to have been mentored by Cornelius Cole! His advice and guidance pretty much made me who I am today!
Describe a tough situation you had in life.
Being unemployed. ‘Nuff said.
Any side projects or you’re working on or hobbies you’d like to share details of?
I do comic book art commissions, I’m a HUGE Beatles fan, I play the drums & guitar, I surf and I am a member of the 501st Legion Star Wars costume charity group as a SANDTROOPER
Any unusual talents or hobbies like tying a cherry stem with your tongue or metallurgy?
I can play guitar in the dark. ;)
Is there any advice you can give for an aspiring animation student or artist trying to break into the business?
Keep at it. Always try to learn new techniques and learn to accept constructive criticism. Lastly, when looking for a job, NO usually means NOT RIGHT NOW. Don’t get discouraged. Oh, and you are better than you think you are!