If you ever wished one of the creators of a cartoon series on Nickelodeon or Cartoon Network would just explain everything about how they sold their shows – and what happens step-by-step during the production process – your wish has been granted. Joe Murray (Rocko’s Modern Life and Camp Lazlo) has written one of the best books on the subject – and a perfect companion to David Levy’s essential volumes. Murray’s new book, Creating Animated Cartoons with Character, explains it all, in rich detail, using his experiences in pitching and producing Rocko and Lazlo, illustrating every part with storyboards, model sheets, photographs, internal charts and graphs. He gives in-depth behind-the-scenes information about his two series, and makes it easy to see how this info can apply to your, or anyones, project. On top of that, Murray corrals his colleagues Steve Hillenberg (Spongebob), Everret Peck (Duckman), Tom Warburton (Codename: Kids Next Door), Craig McCracken (Powerpuff Girls), art director Sue Mondt, voice actor Tom Kenny, sound designer Jeff Hutchins and others for informative sidebar Q&A’s. Linda Simensky provides a great introduction to set the scene. This is a must-have if you are interested in creating TV animation, pitching a show or producing a series – or simply interested, historically, on how Joe himself did it. Highly recommended.
When experienced animators turn to creating comics or illustrating children’s books, I usually find the results successful and quite satisfying. That’s certainly the case with animator Mitch Schauer