Wednesday, March 2, 2022


Let's celebrate an Ukrainian-American artist who changed the face of animation forever. Volodymyr Peter "Bill" Tytla worked at several east coast animation studios before joining Disney in 1932. 

He became the first animator to deeply internalize his characters' emotions which resulted in a type of drawing and acting that had not been done before. (And many folks say had not been done since.)

Bill stayed at Disney for nine years during which he set the standard for character animation. His work leaves me with an enormous sense of awe. It will live forever.

Here are a few more of his character sketches I have collected over the years. 

My first post on Tytla from 2011:



  1. One of my all-time favorites. His work on Chernabog is one of the most powerful in animation history.

  2. What an amazing artist, I'm always fascinated by the huge push they made in the 30's to advance animation.
    If anyone missed it, John Canemaker just scanned an old exhibition catalogue of Tytla's work a few days ago

    1. Marc, thank you so much for following up with this article! John attested to a lot of the things I love about Tytla-- his skills of emotional observation, his fondness for asymmetry, his mastery of weight, and a shrewd sense of caricature that was driven by who the characters were rather than pure absurdity. His quote about Chernabog -- "I imagined I was as big as a mountain and made of rock and yet I was feeling and moving" -- really drove that home for me.

  3. I really agree that Tytla is one of the greatest things to come out of Ukraine. Say Andreas, what did you thought of Tytla's work in "The Incredible Mr. Limpet"?

  4. Bill Tytla was amazing artist, really sad that he "left" Disney after the strike because he was on Art Babbit side.

    I have the feeling that he'd have been on Milt level if he had the chance to stay and produce top work.

  5. Yes, his Chemaborg is soooo great!... :)
    But I'm a big fan of Strombolis „Hip Swings“, his movements during his „Constantinopolee“-Dance! :D
    Thanks for reminding me! :)