What is your name and your current occupation?
Our names are Elena and Olivia Ceballos. We are 17 year old twin sisters and are currently in high school. We plan to attend an art college that would help us in our artistic endeavors, and to study animation along the way.
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
So far, we have helped with some backdrops for our school plays, and are currently working on commissions for various people. We hope to take part in something bigger! Although those things may seem like small, insignificant projects, we know that it will help us with a basic understanding and foundation for much bigger business opportunities.
How did you become interested in animation?
Well, we have always loved to draw and had a passion for art and movies since our early childhood, but we were never interested in working for animation, until we saw DreamWork’s Spirit: Stallion of the Cimmaron, in theaters. We have seen many animated features in our lifetime, but for some odd reason, that film heavily inspired us to create animated films of our own one day. It was such a unique blend of traditional animation and CG, and the first time we saw it, we were blown away! We know that there were many other animated films before that had similar techniques done, but we’ve must have not gone to the movies too often, because we were really too young to remember!
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
We were born in Savannah, Georgia, and currently live in a small town that probably nobody has ever heard of! Regarding the animation business, we are not working in there at the moment. (We wish!) God willing, animation, character designing, and visual development is what we would like to do there!
What’s a typical day like for you with regards to your job?
Eat, go to school, draw, sleep, and repeat!
What part of your job do you like best? Why?
It’s awesome to know that you can imagine something, and then put that idea on a piece of paper! Someone could see us drawing something out of the norm, and the reactions to what we draw sometimes is very amusing! We love when people try to interpret their own view about a certain a drawing, and we think that’s really cool. Plus, we just like to make people happy!
What part of your job do you like least? Why?
Once we get wrapped up in school, we can go the whole week without drawing! Not even a doodle sometimes! It’s aggravating, and it feels like we’re missing something in our daily routine…
What is the most difficult part for you about being in the business?
As you may know, we’re not “officially” in the business yet, but one thing we have learned in the past summer is that it’s too small of an industry to make enemies!
What kind of technology do you work with on a daily basis?
We have your basic pencil and paper. We can use cheap drawing pads, but we occasionally get the ones with better quality, especially paper. We use Canson paper, Col-Erase, and Blackwing pencils, but a mechanical pencil and regular copy paper will do just fine! We also color and draw digitally on our Wacom Cintique 12wx for our more illustrative and detailed works. We’d scan more traditional works in, only if it wasn’t for our horrible scanner! Ha!
In your travels, have you had any brushes with animation greatness?
Well, since we don’t live in any place where those type of people wander around, we don’t have that happen very often. There is Facebook though! Steve Anderson (director), who “likes” some of our pictures on there is pretty awesome for us! It’s small, but it’s a compliment! We have also had someone from Nickelodeon (storyboard artist) comment on our work out of the blue! Things like that are a big deal to us!
Describe a tough situation you had in life.
LIFE. That pretty much sums it up. But there are many good things that do happen to us, even the little things that make your day brighter!
Any side projects or you’re working on or hobbies you’d like to share details of?
We currently have an idea for a future cartoon called “Cosmo and Lacy”. It’s a pretty wacky story, but it’s awesome! Too bad we are too young to pitch an idea right now!
Any unusual talents or hobbies like tying a cherry stem with your tongue or metallurgy?
Nothing out of the ordinary, but we were super fast to answer questions on buzzers for the quiz bowl we had back in elementary school! I guess another thing could be ,us, having a sense of humor. Nothing new to us, but at our school, we are pretty quiet, so most people wouldn’t expect us “serious” people to actually be funny! We don’t do any balancing on rope or anything spectacular! Ha!
Is there any advice you can give for an aspiring animation student or artist trying to break into the business?
Our advice may not apply to everyone, but what we have learned is to trust God to guide us and help us with these choices we are making as of now, and to be patient! We are young, and we want to get out there, but we must be grounded and mature. Good advice, practice, and determination! Don’t give up and don’t put yourself down! Don’t let you praise yourself! Let others do that for you, or you will look stuck up!