Todd Hampson

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What is your name and your current occupation? 
Todd Hampson, Founder/CAO of Timbuktoons, LLC, a 2D animation and IP/concept development company.

What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I grilled and/or burnt many steaks at a cafeteria style steakhouse in the 11th grade and delivered food to (and occasionally had food thrown at me by) elderly patients at a hospital during my first year of college. Good times.

What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
Character Design room murals for 3 episodes of Extreme Makeover Home Edition (2 episodes will run the week of Christmas).Visual development and animation production on 9 DVD’s for Phil Vischer’s (Creator of Veggie Tales) latest DVD series “What’s In the Bible?”.  Action Comic Illustrations and Animation for a National Archives traveling exhibit.  Animated commercial spot for Myth Busters.  Production of Addy and Telly Award winning animated commercial series for an automotive company.

How did you become interested in animation?
I’ve always loved film, animation, story, etc. I saw Jungle Book and Pinocchio as a kid and it blew me away. I never realized I could be an animator, but loved character design and film. If anyone has Continue…

Stu Livingston

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What is your name and your current occupation? 
Stu Livingston — I work as a storyboard artist in animation – I also write and draw comics.

 

What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I had a lot of customer-service-type jobs before breaking in, but the most unusual was the summer I spent working at Meadows Field Airport, back in Bakersfield, CA where I grew up.  The crew and I were responsible for checking-in passengers, loading and unloading luggage, as well as taxiing in and out the airplanes.  Somehow, I became the guy at the front with the orange batons leading in and out the planes each day.  You have to learn all the signals (turn left, go straight, slow down, stop, engine 1 is on fire…), it’s crazy…there’s definitely nothing like having an airplane in your face once or twice a day haha.  I was also a court sketch-artist for a major murder trial that took place in Bakersfield back in 1994.  They had finally tracked down the key-witness to the crime in 2006, so they scouted out artists at CSUN, where I studied, and I was the one they picked.  Interesting story, actually — I helped land, park and service the very plane that brought that witness to Bakersfield, then a few months later I was drawing his picture in court.  Probably the most ridiculously unlikely coincidence of my whole life – I can barely believe it happened.

 

What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
With storyboarding, I’ve had the great pleasure to work on Futurama, a show I’ve loved and watched since its debut.  Due to the large cast and the great variety of stories from script to script, each episode of Futuramacomes with its own unique challenges.  As I’m winding down on an episode, it’s a good feeling to have knowing the next one will most likely be totally different.  With comics, I’ve had the great, great fortune to contribute to the Flight series, which I’ve been a huge fan of since college.  It’s led to some unbelievable opportunities to meet and work with some of my favorite artists!  Most recently, I contributed a story to Explorer: The Mystery Boxes, a new comics anthology from Kazu Kibuishi (who also created Flight).  What made that experience memorable compared to some of the other stories I’ve done was the chance to work with a really hands-on editor who helped challenge, discipline, and guide us until we each came up with stories that we were all really proud of.  Suffice to say I learned a LOT from that experience, I’ll never forget it.

 

How did you become interested in animation?
I made the choice to become an artist very early on – around age 6 or 7 maybe?  It was a shockingly easy choice to make and one I, thankfully, never lost sight of.  Cartoons, animation and drawing were always Continue…

Tony Craig

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What is your name?
Tony Craig
What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
“The animation project I’m most proud of is the DVD video Bobs Gannaway, Jess Winfield and I did to wrap up the Lilo and Stitch tv series.  I know that it is relatively unknown, and I won’t get into the reasons for why I think the release of it was handled inappropriately, but the name of it is “”Leroy and Stitch””.  The reason I am proudest of it has to do with how it all turned out.  Usually, as a director, you have in your head what you think it should look like, and then when your show comes back from being animated overseas, it is not even close.  Then you get used to what you do have, and start molding it into the final show.  This project was the closest to what I had in my head.  I know that it is not feature quality, but when you consider the time and the budget we were given to do it (1/4 the time the Disneytoons folks got for Stitch has a glitch, and probably 1/8 or less of what they spent), well, I’m proud of what we pulled off.
The storyline is good too.  Bobs and Jess did a great job with the script and the transitions of emotion from scene to scene, action sequence to quiet sequence, musical parts, score…all of it came together.
House of Mouse was another fun one, because we were able to utilize any character from the history of Disney animation.  We were pulling the most obscure characters from old Silly Symphony cartoons and sticking them in the show, just for fun.
A personal project that I enjoyed doing was photographing old country and general stores across the state of North Carolina and compiling them into a book, “”Country Stores in North Carolina”.
How did you become interested in animation?
“I remember an evening at my grandparents’ house with my parents. I was still in a high chair, and I know this memory wasn’t based on photos or anything like that.  We went to see Disney’s “Pinocchio” that evening.  I fell asleep through most of it, but what I saw must have made an impression, or clicked in at that developmental stage of my infant mind. There was a copy of Christopher Finch’s book, “The Art of Walt Disney” in the reference section of our library.  Every family trip to the library, I would be at the end of that row, poring over the artwork.  I worked in the yard, saved my nickels, dimes, and quarters, until I had the $35 to buy my very own copy of that book, and I copied the pictures out of it regularly.

Ron Yavnieli

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What is your name and your current occupation?
Ron Yavnieli – Creator of “Gorillaville” currently airing on DreamworksTV.
What are some of the crazier jobs you had before getting into animation?
I was a professional Horse’s Ass – Once as teenagers, my brother and I were hired to be part of a 2 man “Horse” costume at a birthday party. Y’know, where one guy is the front legs and head, and the other guy is the hind legs and back. Since I’m the younger brother, I had to be the ass.

What are some of your favorite projects you’re proud to have been a part of?
Well I’m most proud of my current project – Gorillaville.
Where are you from and how did you get into the animation business?
I grew up in Miami Fl. My first real job in animation was in 1997 at a Miami studio called Continue…

The Minimalist Animation of ‘Archer’

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AWN has an interesting article about my favorite prime time show Archer on FX and highlights their production pipeline as well which is rare for even for an animation interview. Producer Neil Holman and art director Chad Hurd detail the limited but highly stylized animation techniques they wield to devastatingly hilarious effect on their hit FX animated series.

CH: Yeah, well one big new thing that we’re using now is Toon Boom Harmony, which is kind of like a super fancy Flash that’s made for animating. It’s a lot more traditional and we’ve been using this a lot more with our rigs. Anything that you see that has a lot of movement, usually our action scenes, like when we do a big spin kick, that’s done in Harmony. We’ve been using that a good bit more this season. You’re going to see a lot of fun action scenes.

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You can read the entire AWN article on Archer’s pipeline process here.

Dan Harmon meets ‘Dungeons & Dragons’ in ‘Harmonquest’

USA Today has a first look at the upcoming series Harmonquest created by Dan Harmon of Community. Directed by Dominic Polcino and animated by Starburns Industries (Ricky and Morty and Anomalisa)

From the article:

Adapted from an improv segment on his Harmontown podcast, the part animated, part live-action series brings Harmon and his comedian friends together to play fantasy roleplaying game Pathfinder. All 10 episodes were shot in front of a live audience last year, and feature comedians Erin McGathy, Jeff B. Davis and “Game Master” Spencer Crittenden. Special guests include Aubrey Plaza, Ron Funches and Paul F. Tompkins, who join Harmon and Co. as they dream up increasingly absurd characters within the Dungeons realm.

Harmonquest premieres on NBC’s subscription streaming channel Seeso July 14.

You can read the entire article on Harmonquest here.