Tuesday, August 31, 2021
Friday, August 27, 2021
101 Dalmatians, Behind the Scenes II
Here is part 2 with production photos and artwork from 101 Dalmatians. We need a coffee table size book on the making of this brilliant film. To this day the most modern Disney animated movie of all time.
Thursday, August 26, 2021
A Few Beautiful Rough Animation Drawings
These terrific drawings were recently offered at various auctions. Cinderella was drawn by Marc Davis, and technically this is a "touch up" drawing. Marc's rough lines still shine through underneath the clean up pencil definition. This is a clean up drawing on top of Marc's rough. I don't know who did clean up on this character, perhaps Clair Weeks. But look at that face...if you are off by half a pencil width, Cinderella would look like E.T. The immense challenge of delicate Disney realism.
These beautiful young adult Bambi analytical studies were not drawn by Preston Blair, as you might think. This is the work of Milt Kahl.
Ollie Johnston had always been a "dog person". He raised several of them at his Flintridge home during his lifetime. I love the perspective in this sketch of Trusty, as well as the feel for loose, old flesh on his body. High standards all around in all of these animation drawings.
Saturday, August 21, 2021
Online Talk, Walt Disney Family Museum
I will be giving a virtual talk/presentation about my work at Disney Studios on Wednesday, August 25 at 5:30 pm PT in connection with the Walt Disney Family Museum.
For anybody who might be interested in joining me, here is the official link:
Monday, August 16, 2021
I always feel flattered when art students compliment me on my work at Disney, and when they tell me what it means to them. I can sympathize because I gave Frank and Ollie and the others earfuls of praise. I know they appreciated it, and I do, too.
Bianca gave me this precious illustration during the last CTN Expo. The way she stylized the characters I had worked on is super charming. I just noticed the somewhat sad expression of Mickey on the left. I wonder if this might be a subtle statement about me leaving Disney.
Bianca, wherever you are, your artwork made me smile and happy!
Wednesday, August 11, 2021
101 Dalmatians, Behind the Scenes
Saturday, August 7, 2021
A Ward Kimball Talk
Here's a publicity pic of Kimball when he was involved with the cat sequence in Lady & the Tramp. In the end his animation footage was considered too wild to fit the overall film. And wouldn't we all love to see those scenes that were cut. Wild or not, I am sure they were brilliant.
On August 6 and 20, 1956 Ward gave a talk to upcoming animators (I presume at the studio) on various topics of character animation. Everyone in class is being asked to produce a 28 foot long test scene...which is extremely long, considering these were junior artists.
I got a copy of these notes from Dick Williams way back during my Roger Rabbit days. It's interesting that Kimball covers technical as well as philosophical aspects. I'm sure he was a tough teacher to please. But that goes for any of these guys.
Wednesday, August 4, 2021
Fairy Godmother by Marc Davis
Heritage Auctions are currently offering an original model sheet of Cinderella's Fairy Godmother. Their description doesn't include the name of the artist, but it is clear to me that this is the work of Marc Davis.
This character started out originally as a realistic figure during the storyboard phase of production. Compatible to the look of the Stepmother. Milt Kahl lobbied for a screwy, eccentric, funny concept, but Walt didn't see it that way. These Marc Davis sketches show a compromise. There is realism with potential for some eccentricity. So Milt took it from here. I do like Marc's abandoned idea of the Fairy Godmother hovering above ground (sketch #3).
Here are a couple of links to earlier posts about Milt Kahl's Fairy Godmother:
Sunday, August 1, 2021
A King Triton Issue
The first sequence I animated in The Little Mermaid shows King Triton interacting with Sebastian as they discuss Ariel's character. Actually this might be the very first scene issued to me. After completing this section it dawned on me that there was something that doesn't feel right. Triton seemed to be sitting on his "throne" on dry land. The scenes lacked a sense for being underwater. It was his hair! I drew it resting on his back, his beard positioned on his chest. Shoot!!
In all of the following scenes I animated I made sure that the hair was drifting almost weightlessly...like underwater. Sometimes you don't get it right at the start of production. It bugs me to this day...
On a different note: Most of my Youtube videos can't be accessed at the moment. We are working on resolving this. Thank you for your patience, ladies and gentlemen.