Animation Guild

Winter 2018

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WINTER 2018 17 T E C H TA L K CHECK OUT THESE PODCASTS HOSTED BY ANIMATION GUILD MEMBERS. SOUND ADVICE THE ANIMATION NETWORK PODCAST It took Kris Wimberly, a storyboard artist at Universal Pictures, six months of contemplation before he decided to launch the podcast that will shortly be celebrating its 100 th episode. On "College Kris"… When I was in art school, I was considerably behind my peers skill-wise, so I was constantly on the lookout for ways to supplement my education. I kept hearing about podcasts (back in 2006) and I could never find one that really offered what I was looking for. I wanted something to explain processes and roles and ways to build skill in animation, however, all I could find was a sparse selection of animation podcasts that primarily focused on reminiscing and "behind-the-scene" type interviews... After a few years in the industry, I actually had my own collection of knowledge and contacts that I could ultimately create the podcast I had been looking for. A sort of podcast for "college Kris"! Why he can't pick a favorite… Picking my favorite episodes of the podcast is extremely difficult. I'm really proud of the way I formatted the episodes. A lot of work went into it. Ultimately there came to be three styles: 1) the standard host-guest interview; 2) the "solo" episodes where I would deconstruct a single aspect of the TV animation industry; which ultimately became 3) the AMA (Ask Me Anything) episodes where listeners would write in with their questions. Some fan- favorite episodes though are Ep.16 with Jeremy Polgar, Ep.48 with Lauren Martinez, and Ep.56 with Jeff Sornig. Zeroing in on TV… I think the reason my show sky-rocketed so quickly was because I focus on a few main things: 1) it's not an animation fanboy podcast, rather more of an educational tool to discuss how people can break into animation; 2) it zeros in on TV animation where nearly all other animation podcasts talk only about feature film; and 3) I cover all kinds of jobs available to people that they have no idea exist. Learning from 100 episodes… One thing that I noticed very quickly on in my career, which was later confirmed by interviews on the show, is that there truly is no one perfect way to break into this industry. Even if someone tries to replicate another person's road to success, it's never the same. NICK AND LARS HAVE NOTES Storyboard artist Lars Ingelman and animator Nick Shoen review films in a laid-back style right outside the movie theatre. On why they started… We had seen a few movies in a row that had great potential, but fell short in a number of areas. This often led to us walking around the theater having story discussions that lasted longer than the actual length of the film. We'd crack ourselves up, but ultimately come to narrative points in the movie we thought could legitimately be improved. Despite the informal tone of the show we try to give a fair critique as both industry professionals and as fans of animation. The best episode… Our favorite episode was definitely Nine Lives. We and our guest—a mutual friend and storyboard artist—got inebriated before the film, and the show itself devolved into the most fun nonsense we could have hoped for. The value of entertaiment… We like to think our podcast has a loose, accessible tone. We record standing outside the theater, talking about our immediate reactions and how we think it could have been improved. We generally score movies based on their value as entertainment rather than a more "academic" film theory critique. What's the latest… Our episode on Nerdland, an independent movie we both happened to work on at Titmouse. We go to a screening and give our (admittedly biased) reviews, balanced out by two guests watching it for the first time. ANIMATION SUCCESS STORIES Artists Sabrina Mati, Bryan Newton, Anthony Alfonso (who all worked together on Rick and Morty) and Nick Raith kicked off their podcast early last year in an effort to interview people in all types of animation jobs. Embracing fan interaction… Our favorite episode would have to be with [Rick and Morty storyboard artist] Erica Hayes: It has the most views and we had a lot of good fan interaction in answering questions about some good topics. Other than that, every episode has been really special because we notice every person brings something new to the table. Real people, real stories… We try to set an atmosphere that feels like just a couple of friends hanging out. We want to remind listeners that we are real people and we like to have fun. We try to bring food and drinks for every guest we have on our podcast and make them feel at home. What's next… Two episodes on [character designer] Kali Fontecchio and [prop designer] Sullivan Brown. We try to release content every week or every other week. We make announcements ahead of time of who we are interviewing and when so listeners can join us live for discussion and questions with the guests.

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