Happy birthday to pioneering animation artist Floyd Norman, who turns 80 years old today. Born on June 22, 1935 in Santa Barbara, California, Floyd Norman’s place is secure as one of the earliest African-American artists to be hired at the Walt Disney animation studio, and the first long-term African-American artist at Disney.
Norman started working at Disney in 1956. Fifty-nine years later, he continues to work in the industry. His career credits include such Disney classics as Sleeping Beauty, The Sword in the Stone, Mary Poppins, and The Jungle Book, all the way up to contemporary films like Mulan, Toy Story 2, and Monsters Inc. Most recently, he created the story for The Further Adventures of Thunderbolt, which appeared as a bonus on the Blu-ray release of 101 Dalmatians.