What is your name and your current occupation?
My name is Elyse Hartey and I am a Lead Texture Artist at Nickelodeon Animation Studios
What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I was a hotel maid at Disney World. I was also a tennis instructor for a little while.
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
I really enjoyed working on Robot and Monster for Nickelodeon. It hasn’t aired yet but it will be coming out soon and I’m excited for everyone to see it.
How did you become interested in animation?
I’ve always loved cartoons and it had never occurred to me that I could do it as a job. I think the first time I saw Finding Nemo was the first time I really realized that I could do that, and I’m going to do that!
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I am originally from the Pennsylvania, New York area. I went to school in Florida and after graduating I got an apprenticeship at Nickelodeon.
What’s a typical day like for you with regards to your job?
Most days I get there and go right to work checking uv and texture files sent in from overseas, giving notes to guide their work or approving files. Throughout the day I’ll get tasks to work on, majority being uv’s, texturing and shader writing. Recently I’ve started on a new show so my days and occasionally my nights are being spent on texturing the main characters and testing new software.
What part of your job do you like best? Why?
I love seeing the finished product. My job is to help make cartoons that will be seen all over the world in a ton of different languages. It’s pretty cool that my artwork is seen by so many people.
What part of your job do you like least? Why?
Well I live in California, so sometimes being cooped up inside behind a computer for 8-10 hours a day can be a challenge, but you just have to love what you do.
What kind of technology do you work with on a daily basis?
On a daily basis I use, Maya, Photoshop, Bodypaint and Outlook
What is the most difficult part for you about being in the business?
Living so far away from my family and friends. I hope to get a job on the east coast within the next few years.
Any side projects or you’re working on or hobbies you’d like to share details of?
I play tennis alot lately, I love it.
Any unusual talents or hobbies like tying a cherry stem with your tongue or metallurgy?
The past few years for Halloween I’ve started making really elaborate full body costumes of cartoon characters. They’re alot of work but really fun to make.
Is there any advice you can give for an aspiring animation student or artist trying to break into the business?