C.H. Greenblatt‘s promising new series Chowder debuts tonight on Cartoon Network at 7:30pm. Greenblatt, whose previous experience includes Spongebob and Billy and Mandy, talks about the show in this Toonzone interview.
DreamWorks animation artists may have to put up with Jeffrey Katzenberg, but thankfully, hotel employees don’t. The security at the Four Seasons Hotel in New York kicked Katzenberg out of their hotel after he started causing trouble and yelling,”Who the (bleep) are you? Do you know who I am?” at one of the hotel employees.
Happy birthday to animation legend Ollie Johnston who celebrates his 95th today!
(Thanks, John Canemaker)
Independent animator (and former syndicated cartoonist) Chris Harding (Learn Self Defense) launches a new online comic strip today called We The Robots. There are thirteen comics currently posted and new ones scheduled weekly. I tend to be a fan of just about everything Chris does and this latest project is no exception. It should be noted that the strip is loosely related to the next animated short that he’s currently working on. He explains in one of his blog posts:
“ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s hard to explain the relationship between the animated Work In Progress, and the non-animated comic strip that goes with it. Both take place in the same fictional world of robots. The short is more broad and doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t revolve around any specific robot, where the comic strip has several regular characters.”
With all the recent discussion about Charles Schulz, I thought it’d be fun to share this 1969 photo of Schulz pulling a ‘Lucy’ on Peanuts animation director Bill Melendez.
Back in February 2006, I wrote about an intriguing French animated feature Peur(s) du Noir (Fears of the Dark), which is a black-and-white anthology of scary stories. Each of the stories has a distinct look designed by alternative comic artists and illustrators like Charles Burns, Lorenzo Mattotti and Richard McGuire. The English trailer can be viewed here (Quicktime) and the film website is here. The film opens on February 13, 2008 in France. No word yet on whether there’ll be an international release.
Mark Webster of Motion Design blog offers a preview of a fascinating film which I hadn’t heard of: a full-length animated documentary about legendary film title designer Pablo Ferro (Dr. Strangelove). The film which is scheduled for release in ’08 is based on interviews with dozens of Ferro’s friends and colleagues including Angelica Huston, Andy Garcia, Beau Bridges, Stan Lee and Norman Lear. Before becoming involved in film titles, Ferro worked in animation at NY studios like Elektra and Academy, as well as co-owning his own commercial studio in the early-60s called Ferro, Mogubgub and Schwartz.
“The Art and Flair of Mary Blair” show opens this Saturday at the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco. More than fifty pieces of original Mary Blair art will be on display including her animation concept work, Golden Books, commercial illustration, personal paintings and Disney theme park designs. A preview of some of the pieces on display can be found on the blog of the museum’s curator Andrew Farago.
I like the honest name of this new how-to book: How to Cheat in Flash CS3: The art of design and animation in Adobe Flash CS3. Forget honing your skills and mastering the craft of animation like those classic artists, just cheat your way into thinking you’re an animator by moving some crap around in Flash. Why not, everybody else is doing it.
Frankly I’m not sure what’s more disturbing: drawings of the Terrytoons characters Sourpuss and Gandy getting it on, drawings of characters from Ed, Edd n Eddy getting it on or drawings of characters from Ratatouille getting it on.
What cannot be denied is that the artist behind all of these, Rebecca Sugar, is ridiculously talented, with drawing skills that are made that much more amazing when one learns that she is a mere twenty years old…she’s certainly an artist with a bright future ahead of her. She also has a website here.
It used to be that you had to live in Los Angeles or New York to make it big in the US animation scene, but today a whole new breed of artists are creating names for themselves while living far from these animation hubs. Among them is Joel Trussell, of War Photographer fame, who makes his home in Knoxville, Tennessee. He was recently profiled in the Knoxville weekly Metro Pulse. It’s an inspiring read that shows how it’s possible for contemporary animation artists to establish their identity via the Internet and to parlay that online notoriety into a steady stream of work…all while living in Tennessee.