Monday, June 09, 2008

Skidoosh

Kung Fu Panda is an awesome, movie. Way better than any other Dreamworks animated movie to date. The trailer doesn't quite convey this fact, but check it out if you haven't seen it yet. The art direction is beautiful (except maybe the Monkey character design) the animation is really organic and entertaining, and the story has a lot of heart and humour. I don't remember a single pop-culture reference or fart joke, either. Huge props to anyone who worked on this. Hit the picture above for a link to the Google listing and enter your zip code to find the showtimes at your nearest theatre, then go see it. Hurry, because Wall*E comes out in a couple weeks and you should NOT decide to just see one animated movie this month.

3 comments:

  1. Hi Tim, I read somewhere that you attended Southern. I was thinking about going into animation there as well, and I was just wondering how difficult it is finding jobs that don't make you work on Sabbath. If you could please get back to me on that I would appreciate it! =]
    -Jessica

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  2. Hi Jessica. Your Blogger profile lists your passions as God, gymnastics, and photography. Awesome! Let me guess: Spring Valley Academy - either that or Mt. Vernon. Now that all the non-SDA readers think I'm weird and creepy, I'll answer your question.

    It may have helped that at my first job the HR manager was Jewish so she needed no explanation at all after the word "Sabbath," but so far I have had no trouble at all. Just make sure that you don't wait to bring it up until they are already asking you to work on Saturday. Don't bring it up at your first interview or anything either, but definitely talk about it before your first day of work. Then when you get to work make sure that you talk about it to your direct supervisor, too. Crunch time is a fact of life in animation so let them know that you will pull your weight by either working Sunday instead, or working longer hours during the week, or both if the studio is doing 7-day weeks - which sucks, but I did it for a while at R+H.

    Now, so far I've only been a Jr. Animator and an Animator. Things might be more difficult for Leads or Supervising Animators when the rest of the team is working on Sabbath and they're not. I'll cross that bridge if/when I get there.

    Hendel Butoy is an SDA who worked at Disney for 25 years and became a director. (He was teaching at Southern, but I don't think he is anymore) He certainly didn't work Sabbaths. If you show integrity and a good work ethic people will respect you and won't accuse you of just wanting a day off or being a slacker.

    I say go for it. Southern is an amazing school and while it's animation program may not be the best in the nation, it's certainly adequate if you apply yourself and really make use every source of animation knowledge you can. The Internet is your friend, and your classmates will teach you a lot to.

    What do Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Ghost Rider, Alvin & The Chipmunks, Veggie Tales, and Madagascar 2 have in common? They all list Southern grads in the credits.

    As for your other passions:
    Photography can be a good start for animation. It teaches composition, contrast, attention to detail, aesthetic sense, and if you develop your own film and photos it will also teach you to work carefully and patiently - all skills that you can apply to animation. It was the only art class I had in high-school and it helped me a lot.

    Gymnastics is fun, promotes healthy living, relieves stress, and builds life-long friendships. Gym-Masters is awesome (Coach Schwarz is from Spring Valley) but learning animation takes a lot of time and practice. One of the toughest choices I made was to quit Gym-Masters after two years so I could really spend the time I needed to on animation. It's probably possible to do both if you have really good time management.

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  3. Yeah I go to Mount Vernon Academy. =] Thanks so much for your response. I think it would be so amazing to work for Disney someday. And I can't wait to be on Gym-Masters! I don't think I'd be able to quit lol. But I'm sure it was for the best. There were times this year when I thought I might have to drop Acronics, but I just couldn't do it. Gymnastics means way too much to me!

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