Joe Apel

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What is your name and your current occupation?
Joe Apel, Flash Animator at Cartoon Network Studios

What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I worked a variety of jobs before I finally got my break in animation. I worked at a Comic Book store at the age of 13 organizing comics. At the age of 15-17, I worked as a camera man for the school district’s cable access station. I washed dishes for a catering service. I worked at a movie theater for 10 years and worked my way up from usher, to projectionist, to Assistant Manager, to Promotions Manager.One job that I thought I would love but ended up hating was working at the Warner Bros. Studio Store in a local mall. I worked in the “gallery” area of the store mostly. I was there to inform people on what the artwork was and sell them cels, maquettes, and limited edition art. I made commission if I sold artwork and they even had a payment plan. I was terrible at the job, I loved the Warner Bros. cartoons so much and I felt it was morally wrong to persuade people into buying animation art when they only intended to come to the mall to buy a pair of jeans. I believe I only worked there for about a month.
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
I storyboarded on the PBS series, WordGirl, which I find to be an educational and funny show. I created character designs for the pilot of Allen Gregory, which will premiere this fall on Fox. It was inspiring to…. Continue…

Sean Petrilak

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What is your name and your current occupation?
Hello there, my name is Sean Petrilak and I am an episodic director on the show “Wabbit” at Warner Bros. Aside from animation, I am a live action storyboard artist.
What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I used to be a head referee at a paintball field. I got shot at, broke up fights when tempers got flared, and shoveled heaps of paint, shells, and garbage until my back was sore. Perfect experience for animation. I don’t know if this is considered ‘crazy’, but before animation, I started working in the music industry and working with many high-end performers as a storyboard artist- still do. What I think is ‘crazy’ about it is the pace at which it moves and the politics that can cause workflow to change at a moment’s notice. I sometimes see a morning news report about a mishap with one of my clients. All you can say is, “Well there goes that job.”
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
This sounds cheesy, but everything I worked on so far in animation has been an absolute pleasure, because I’ve been allowed to do different things on each one. “Kung Fu Panda: LOA”(the series), “Randy Cunningham 9th Grade Ninja”, and “Wabbit”.
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I didn’t look far, that’s for sure. I grew up in an animation family. My father, Kevin, is a director, sheet timer, and character animator. My mother, Jill, is color goddess, BG and BG Key painter. My great uncle Gerry Dvorak was a baseball card illustrator who got into animation as well. No matter how hard my parents tried, I still got into animation.  I had a million Continue…

Using Storyboard pro as an Animation package

This Animation was created using Toon Boom Storyboard Pro version 4.1 and a Wacom Cintiq. Background Art was drawn and Painted in Adobe Photoshop CS6 By Arshad Mirza Baig of A.M.B Animation who we interviewed some time ago. Arshad goes through the process on his blog.

From his site:

Flash is fine for demonstrating simple tutorials but extremely frustrating for anyone attempting to produce a high quality piece of drawn frame by frame character animation. The vector tools are extremely intrusive and inhibit the organic flow from brain to pen stroke making the whole process of animating extremely disjointed – much like the symbol style that Flash was created for. In my ignorance I held the word vector in disrepute and refused to work in Toon Boom Story Board pro purely because it was vector based. Then Toon Boom announced a bitmap drawing tool in it’s new version so I decided to give it a go. After a while of playing with the programme I thought I’d just try and see what the vector drawing experience was like in it and I was stunned. It was just as good as drawing with a marker pen and I had full control! I never looked back and spent last year doing most of my story boards happily in vector line work.

 

You can read his entire article here.

Paul Coulthard

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What is your name and your current occupation?
My name is Paul Coulthard and I am currently a professional storyboard artist, working in the UK animation industry.

What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
Not had too many crazy jobs (yet), so the most unique one would probably have been draining a reservoir in the pouring rain. This was in the break between studio and freelance, where I was temping regular jobs. I had to clamber up and down this muddy woodland banking, checking the drainage pipes were all connected, slipping and sliding about in the rain and mud. I just found it really amusingly futile – trying to drain a reservoir, in torrential rain. It was great fun and good exercise.

What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
I love collaboration projects. I think it’s the best way to make progress on anything, bouncing ideas back and forth with other creative people. I worked on a project with a group of artists and students and that was a really nice collaborative effort. I also co-created and developed a pitch for an action-adventure show with my good friend James Tiley. It included creating, designing, writing the whole series in outline form and a pilot episode script. I loved working out the arcs and story structure the most.

How did you become interested in animation?
My mother tells me that when I was about three years old, there was a brief period where I wouldn‘t answer to any other name than “Dogtanian!” I grew up in the 80‘s, and shows like ‘The Mysterious Cities of Gold’, that had big long story arcs, really gripped me. The sense of journey and adventure sunk in. So it’s safe to see I always loved animation. Then, when I was eleven, I saw Continue…

Aidan McAteer

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What is your name and your current occupation? 
My name is Aidan McAteer and I’m Episodic Director at Kavaleer Productions in Dublin.
What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
It wasn’t crazy (kind of the opposite), but I did a brief stint in a financial firm which I thought was supposed to be animation.  I turned up on the first day and they said – hello, design our new mobile website.  I should have known something was up when they said I had to wear a suit!
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of? 
I’ve been lucky to work on lots of great stuff – I did a show in UK called “The Secret Show” for the BBC, it was really fun, but never found a huge audience, which is a shame.  I also worked on Peppa Pig (which is massively popular in the UK) with a host of very talented people.    I  had a great time working in Vancouver – it’s an amazing city and I really have landed on my feet back in Dublin working for Kavaleer on a new show called “Wildernuts”.
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I’m from Dublin (Ireland). When I left animation college, there wasn’t much work there, so I moved to London. I got my first job in a traditional animation studio owned by a great guy,  Philip Vallentin, called Espresso Animation.  I  was a Continue…

Stephanie Olivieri

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What is your name and your current occupation?
Stephanie Olivieri; Assistant animator/clean up artist-traditional, 2D, paper and pencil and storyboards (boarding, clean-up & revisions)

What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I worked as a waitress and an actress before animation, so nothing too crazy.

What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
Hard to say, honestly I love everything I have worked on for different reasons. Feature films are fun because of how long you are with the characters and crew, commercials and shorts are fun because of the crazy hours and cartoony characters. How did you become interested in animation? I went to an audition for a Disney film and was doodling on my call sheet, and they brought it up.

Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I am from all over really, but came out to Los Angeles for acting. Disney got me into the business by Continue…