The last day and what I intend to be the best day.

I got up on time today to watch the Production Session on the new animated short The Dam Keeper. The session started out with the animated short being played out on the large screen.

It was a living painting, but of a different time and world compared to Child of Light. The painting looked near traditional-on-canvas style, enchanting and playful and heartfelt.

Each one of the 5000 ish frames were hand painted, and done as a side project of Disney and Pixar employees and recent college grads. Amongst the audience I was treated to storyboards, color layouts, animatics, and some rough storylines that were scrapped along the way.

The two first time directors of the short had quite the adventure creating the short, renting out an old studio across the street from Pixar, and working with 70 people across the course of the 3-month production. The MVP, Eric, was the supervising animator and somehow also found time to keep on working on his own independent projects. I’ve seen some of his work on YouTube before. Eric’s style is very fluid and pleasant to watch.

It’s amazing that the two directors have left Pixar to start their own studio. “You know after the credits in Finding Nemo, when the fish are floating in bags in the ocean, and they’re like…Now what? That’s how we feel right now.”

Such a perfect description.

It was also funny how they recounted the conflicts between some of the animators and the painters – the animators wanting 24fps and the painters begging for 8, because they would have to paint each frame.

It’s funny when I realize how animation and art can be distinct fields-that they are not quite one and the same. I’ve known this before, but for some reason this iteration of the fact resonated more deeply. I can learn to animate without being concerned about things like painting. But at the same time if I want to do character animation I should also take some acting lessons. After all, it’s the animator that turns a stiff model into something alive and someone tumblr fangirls over and writes fanfiction over.

Right now I finished doing a first pass through the Job Fair. I printed out resumes but the companies I’m interested in require extensive software engineering or graphics expertise, so it looks like my resume won’t do much if anything until next year. I did grab a few papers from multiple tables for Cornell Computer Animation though.

I’m standing in line for a Pixar teapot now. The line has been building steadily since 10:15, with the teapots being handed out at 12. I’m lucky to be very close to the front of the line. MY FIRST SIGGRAPH TEAPOT. I CAN’T WAIT.


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