What is your name and your current occupation?
My name is Rob Feldman and I am a designer and animator of several web series along with working for Fangoria Entertainment.
I had a LOT of jobs, mostly when I was younger—sold meat from a truck (or rather “gourmet foods”), swept sewer waste into a little drain hole as groundskeeper when I was 15. The craziest job though was selling copiers! AAAGGGH!!!
I’m proudest of my animated series, Dr. Shroud—-aside from that, I have been a part of several good projects with some network professionals. I’ve had a good combination of pitches and service work, but I am most proud of my own stuff. 🙂
How did you become interested in animation?
It was really by default. In 2000, I had a comic book version of Dr. Shroud and friends turned me onto Flash. I was addicted (and still am). I am not formally trained in animation—I found it to be a tool to get an idea across.
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I’m originally from Central New Jersey and now living in Doylestown, PA. The dot com era was a huge way to get into animation and promote your own work. I saw it as a huge vehicle to gain fans and traction for my properties. This is even truer today with the Youtube generation, only the competition is much more fierce.
What’s a typical day like for you with regards to your job?
I started out with a big bottle of champagne, ala Larry Hagman. I then talk non-stop about myself to people around me as I drive my Segue around town. Haha! I suppose it’s like everyone else—drink coffee, answer> emails, complain a lot and then start working. But once I start working, it’s hard to stop. Maybe that’s the big difference.
What part of your job do you like best? Why?
When the work comes out great. Usually if I sit back and say “Feldman, you’re a genius!”, I know people will hate it. So I aim to deliver mediocrity to clients. But for myself, the best part is doing my own work, usually the dark horror work. Maybe because I have a dark sense of humor. And I was kidding about mediocrity—-I always put my best foot forward.
What part of your job do you like least? Why?
Well, I would say deadlines, but I actually like a good deadline. I’d say waiting for checks—for obvious reasons. Aside from that, slow computers are a big pain in my ass.
What kind of technology do you work with on a daily basis?
I use the full Adobe Creative Suite a PC. Being a Flash guy, Flash is my weapon of choice. I have a kick ass Wacom tablet (no, not a Cintiq, gloaters!) that is invaluable.
What is the most difficult part for you about being in the business?
Waiting! Getting people to cough up money for a project: right now getting the remaining financing for a feature and trying to sell another optioned property. The rate that people move is very slow unless there is a complete sense of urgency. I find that coming from the indie world, waiting is not a factor as I can make it fast and good. So right now my focus is on doing that, those things that are within my control.
In your travels, have you had any brushes with animation greatness?
Oh yes! Too many to name, but my favorite was when I met Stan Lee in a completely random chance meeting on my way to Comic-Con. I know he may not be “an animation great”, but it did it for me.
Describe a tough situation you had in life.
How much time do we have? I tend to look differently at those in that they were there to teach me something. I’d say toughest was when my father died in 2007. He was a good guy, miss him a lot.
Any side projects or you’re working on or hobbies you’d like to share details of?
I always have something going, but my favorite, in addition to new episodes of Dr. Shroud, is this social media game I am proud to be a part of. They asked me to develop a zombie theme and I created Man-Ghoul, a mafia zombie character that is man by day, ghoul by night! I also have this new Dr. Shroud Flash drive that is pretty cool…
Any unusual talents or hobbies like tying a cherry stem with your tongue or metallurgy?
Again, how much time do we have? Haha! Yes, I can juggle (not a big feat), ride a unicycle (not bs’ing) and sing in a classic radio, barbershop-like style. All of these are skills that I would say are pretty embarrassing. So no….I don’t have any unusual talents or skills. Ha!
Is there any advice you can give for an aspiring animation student or artist trying to break into the business?
Yes, do your own thing. Now is the time to do it, there is no reason to wait for a deal to get your work out there. If you are interested in service work and not creating new ideas, go work for someone. But if you want to make your own stuff, go indie and put it out there. There is no difference as long as it is good and the technology is there to do it. If people like it, you’ll know. If they hate it, you’ll know that too. But don’t wait for someone else—the tools are all right in front of you.