Friday, December 3, 2021

Frank and Ollie Interview

 


Here is a link to a terrific interview with Frank and Ollie. Michael Barrier talked to them in 1987. It is fascinating to see them both talking so candidly. This conversation is more about what went wrong during their time at Disney, and less about what went right. Since many of us know that part already, to hear about their frustrations and disappointments is super interesting. 

At one point Frank talks about how difficult it was to animate Cinderella's stepmother. I had always thought that he enjoyed the challenge of drawing this subtle, powerful villain...apparently not that much. The role wasn't "juicy" enough for him. Frank criticized Milt Kahl's early character designs for Lady Tremaine. Too realistic! You can find those drawings here (followed by a few of Frank' animation roughs):

https://andreasdeja.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-stepmother.html


Here is Mike Barrier's interview:

http://michaelbarrier.com/Interviews/ThomasJohnston1987/ThomasJohnston1987.html


Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Bill Peet Books

I haven't had the chance to see any of Bill Peet's life drawing (from a nude model), but Milt Kahl told me way back that "they knock your socks off." Milt was a huge fan of Peet and his storyboard work for Disney. As were all of the animators.

Heritage Auctions offered this concept piece for the cover of his 1989 autobiography a while back. The final version for the book removes the artist from the composition. What an outstanding storyteller, at Disney as well as in his "Childrens' Books". (They can be enjoyed by adults as well.)

Peet started to illustrate books in 1959, while still working at the studio. His first book was "Hubert's Hair-Raising-Adventure". 

Here is the Wikipedia link to Peet's life and work:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Peet

I am just so thrilled to have met him, and I recall our lively conversation during the reception of my wire sculptures exhibit at Disney in 1989:

https://andreasdeja.blogspot.com/2012/05/wildlife-in-wire.html

 





Sunday, November 28, 2021

101 Dalmatians, Behind the Scenes V

Last part of images from an Italian booklet about the production process from Disney's 1961 animated feature 101 Dalmatians
When you create something that's innovative, beautiful and entertaining, it will be for the ages. 
101 Dalmatians falls into that category.














































Sunday, November 14, 2021

The Brave Little Tailor's Giant

 You really can't overstate the inventive animation Bill Tytla produced during his time at Disney.

Just take his work on the Giant from the 1938 short The Brave Little Tailer.  On the surface his design is pretty cartoony. Around this time Giant personality types similar to this one showed up in short films from other studios. But Tytla's animation shines because on top of basic animatable forms he applies real human anatomy. Each hand, leg or foot is a study in a classical sense. The way finger- and toenails are drawn in proper perspective shows that this man was a master artist who knew the human figure. 

And then there is this tremendous feeling of weight in the animation. WEIGHT !! One of the most important components in any kind of animation.

These clean up lines were drawn over Tytla's rough animation, on the same sheet of paper. That's why the drawings have such vitality as well as beautiful dimensional volumes. Groundbreaking work.

Are young animation students today still studying this kind of stuff? I sure hope so. 

 













 

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

101 Dalmatians, Behind the Scenes IV

Here is the fourth installment of artwork and production photos from 101 Dalmatians. (One more to go.) Somebody mentioned that this material should be included in a coffee table sized book on the making of the film. I couldn't agree more. Any of Walt Disney's animated features deserve a deluxe book, showing the behind the scenes process. Pierre Lambert has been publishing gorgeous books on Disney films filled with original artwork. 

But it is time for a series of books that lift the curtain and give readers an indepth look on how these cinematic masterpieces came to be. Storyboards, character designs, layouts, backgrounds, photo stats and photos of the artists at work should all be included. What do you think?

 




 



 




 


 


 

Monday, November 8, 2021

Runaway Brain Article

 


Here is a new insightful article by Drew Taylor about the troubled production of the Mickey Mouse 1995 short film Runaway Brain. I have nothing but great memories working on this project in Paris, out of all places. The French animation crew was fantastic, so talented and enthusiastic. 

https://www.polygon.com/features/22738384/runaway-brain-evil-mickey-short-streaming

I did a post on Runaway Brain a while ago:

https://andreasdeja.blogspot.com/2012/12/runaway-brain.html