Saturday, July 20, 2019

Remembering Eric Larson

Photo by Dave Block

It's not easy finding original animation drawings by Disney animation mentor to so many, Eric Larson. So I am grateful again to my friend Wil for providing scans for most of these beautiful sketches. Eric had a knack for communicating animation techniques as well as Disney's philosophy on entertainment to students. I remember his classes as if it were yesterday.
His articulate and passionate words of wisdom that some of us weren't able to comprehend until much later.
One of his comments which he repeatedly brought up was that Walt always gave you more than you expected. And that he lifted everybody up who worked with him.
When the Disney company entered regular TV animation during the early 1980s, Eric was not a happy camper.
The quality wasn't good enough for him, and he knew it wouldn't be good enough for Walt.

For those of us who were lucky enough to go through Eric's animation training program, he was a mix of  magic link to Walt Disney, the grandfather you never had and Santa Clause.

There are many posts regarding Eric Larson on this blog, here is the link to one of them:


  1. What a a truly wonderful man! Every Disney animator who ever worked with him, trained under him or even knew him has nothing but nice things to say about him. :)

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  3. I have a feeling that Eric Larson would be crushed if he were alive to see the way Disney is being run today. Gone is the company that put a lot of soul and effort into their works. Nowadays, "Disney" (or rather, Big Mouse) is just a soulless hack that prefers quantity over quality. Sigh...

    1. I think that there is lots of good work coming out of Disney. My daughter and I watch Vampirina and fancy Nancy. They are great for teaching moral lessons.

      As for the movies, I think that Larson would love the Moana movie and the new lion king and jungle book. I think that he only sad thing would be that many of the old movies like song of the south that he worked on are no longer able to be watched.

  4. Personally I think Disney's TV animation of The Disney Afternoon was certainly "good enough" in retrospect when compared to the kind of animated shows they've been putting out now.

  5. I like Roquefort :-)...
    I'm anxious about the Walt Disney Company. Perhaps it is now too big and dissolves one day like the Roman Empire....
    I know financial success is important to save jobs. But now a man like Walt Disney would be dismissed although every inspiration made Disney Animation big! And often the most daring projects would be important for the future of Disney...

  6. I love the story of Peg, and his contributions to 'Lady and the Tramp'. It seemed like an especially enjoyable film to work on!