What is your name and your current occupation?
My name is Boris Hiestand, and I’m an animator/storyboard artist/character designer/voice over guy.
What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I worked as a waiter in a hotel and on a construction site shoveling bricks as a teen, so nothing that crazy really. I knew I wanted to be an animator when I was 14, so focused on that from an early age. I got fired from most of those other jobs as I wasn’t committed to them at all, probably because I was constantly day dreaming about animation!
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
Working at Aardman on “The Pirates; In An Adventure With Scientists” was incredible, because I had never worked on a stop motion project before, and it made me feel like a student again, or a kid in a sweet shop. Being able to walk around those mind blowing sets every day was amazing. Everything you see on the screen is really there physically; the talent and craftsmanship there is truly humbling. “Hotel Transylvania” was very rewarding creatively for me because the style of movement required was very cartoony which is right up my alley. The old Warner’s and MGM Tex Avery shorts were a big inspiration, and I hadn’t seen that done well in CG before. Also, Genndy(Tartakovsky, the director) knew exactly what he wanted and trusted the animators to get on with it, rare qualities in directors of big CG productions unfortunately. It’s easier to change things in CG than it is in hand drawn or stop motion animation, so on CG productions with big budgets they tend to tell you to change shots again and again and again, which is quite draining creatively and rarely improves the quality of a scene. You become a “motion editor” rather than an animator. Genndy however pitched you the shot, you’d go and animate it, show it to him, he’d approve it, done. All the animation I did in that film is really mine, and that felt good.
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I was born in Amsterdam, The Netherlands but grew up in a small town called Vught in the south of the country. I always loved drawing and was a big Disney fan, trying to master their drawing style by Continue…