This is my last week at my current job. As of next Monday, I will officially be on the Disney payroll... a Disney artist?! Who would have thought? Ever since I can remember I've been sketching Disney characters (or at least tracing them from my coloring books), watching and re-watching their movies hundreds of times, and spending every extra cent I've ever been able to afford on vacations to their parks. And now I'm a week away from being a Disney cast member! I'm going to be working for the same company that employs Jiminy Cricket, and that is cool!
The last few years at Feature Films for Families have been good. I've been able to work with some of the best friends I've ever had, and my drawing skill has improved a ton (still needs about a million more tons). For a long time, though, I've felt like I don't have the sensibilities needed to work here. As a storyboarder and writer, I tend to lean toward sarcasm and other things that Family Films doesn't want. It's frustrating that what I consider some of my biggest strengths in story telling are frequently considered weaknesses around here. My style of humor isn't inappropriate - it's just not what this place is looking for.
Next Monday I start at Avalanche Software - a video game company Disney owns. I'll be doing storyboards and hopefully some design stuff on the video games that are based on Disney's upcoming animated films. So, no - technically I'm not going to be a Disney artist, but I will be working with Disney characters for Disney, so it's close enough that I'm claiming "Disney artist." And I'll still be storyboarding, so I'm excited. Maybe this new job will eventually serve as a kind of spring board for me to get into storyboarding for films. Even if it doesn't, though, it's a huge step up for me.
It's funny because a month ago I wasn't much of a Disney fan any more. Then they bought Pixar, put John Lasseter in charge, changed their creative direction, and my feelings completely changed almost over night. In a week I'll be working for them... me and Jiminy Cricket. It's been quite a turn around. I'm going to Disney World!