Bob Lizarraga

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What is your name and your current occupation?
Bob Lizarraga

What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I delivered pantyhose to liquor stores in East L.A.- I lasted one whole day.

What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
I loved working on Freakazoid- There were always celebrity cameos that needed caricaturing.

How did you become interested in animation?
Warner Bros cartoons on TV– any animation that was funny.Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I grew up in the San Fernando Valley. While working at The Daily News, I heard a local animation studio was looking for artists, so
I scheduled an interview. That was Calico Creations, and I wound up designing, storyboarding and animating.What’s a typical day like for you with regards to your job?
I’ll get the script and a character breakdown, then submit roughs after meeting with the director.     The design must go through an approval process that involves the client, director, and art director.

What part of your job do you like best? Why?
Besides the challenge of creating appealing design, the people working in animation are a trip. Its nice being surrounded by so much creativity.

What part of your job do you like least? Why?
As the design goes through the production process, mouthcharts, turnarounds, etc. must be created– these duties require less creativity and more drafting than the beginning sketches.

What is the most difficult part for you about being in the business?
Depending on the client/studio dynamic, there can many cooks involved in the approval-process- each with their own take on what the character should look like. This can result in revision after revision, which can have a bad domino-effect for the production schedule.  Also, the machine-made coffee is terrible.

What kind of technology do you work with on a daily basis?
For the most recent CGI shows I’ve worked on, just pencils and paper– but freelance last year  required my Cintiq, working with Illustrator and Photoshop.

In your travels, have you had any brushes with animation greatness?
I once worked with Nestor Redondo, who also illustrated comics such as SWAMP THING. He was an incredible draftsman.

Describe a tough situation you had in life.
Well, in animation there can be lay-offs and there’s no telling how long that may last. So I found myself in a scary financial situation one time because I hadn’t anticipated a long dry spell.

Any side projects or you’re working on or hobbies you’d like to share details of?
Caricature and monsters are two subjects I incorporate for illustration and fine art. I’ll be participating in a group art showJune 4th at Halloweentown in Burbank – a tribute to The Haunted Mansion.

Is there any advice you can give for an aspiring animation student or artist trying to break into the business?
I’d say if you’re starting out, be flexible, check your ego at the door, and try many areas (story, design, etc.) to see what you have a knack for. Save up for a Cintiq, and NEVER lose your sense of humor!

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