Tuesday, December 12, 2017

"We Must Both Look Our Best for George"

...He is our oldest and dearest friend, you know."
English character actress Hermione Baddeley read those lines in this scene as Madame Bonfamille in The Aristocats.
Even after all those years I am still baffled at how amazingly Milt Kahl animated this realistic character with grace and believability. Of course he simplified her human figure, and what you see are vintage Kahl shapes and forms. Disney layout artist/producer Joe Hale told me once: " Only Milt was able to pull off stylized designs with strong straight lines against curves."

I just love her elegant movements and charm. And the fact that the drawings were kept rough and loose doesn't bother me at all.  I call her a "mini Kahl masterpiece".

Friday, December 8, 2017

I Live for Furs!

A fantastic scene by Marc Davis, who ended up animating all of Cruella's footage in 101 Dalmatians.
Leading up to this moment, Cruella tried to interact with Pongo, who fiercely growls at her. 
Anita, in an attempt to avoid a dangerous situation, tries to get Cruella's attention away from Pongo.
"Cruella, isn't that a new fur coat?"
"My only true love, darling." (The following scene: "I live for furs, I worship furs!")

I love the way Cruella lifts up the heavy coat and buries her face in it, # 25. This is a great example of referencing some live action footage and then going to town with it by greatly exaggerating the idea that this crazy woman is truly nuts about fur coats.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Lounsbery Goon Roughs

John Lounsbery animated quite a few scenes featuring Maleficent's Goons. (Milt Kahl did one scene, and he came up with the final animation design.)
The following Lounsbery drawings are currently being offered on Ebay:

I believe the first three drawings were not used in the film, the last one is from the scene in which the Pig Goon proudly proclaims that they have been looking for a baby.
Frank and Ollie once said that John Lounsbery was the one animator who was able to adapt to Milt's drawing style better than anyone else at the studio. I thing these animation drawings prove their point.

Here is the link to a previous post on the Goons from Sleeping Beauty:

Friday, December 1, 2017

More Early Black Cauldron

These design sketches of mine of The Horned King for The Black Cauldron are currently being offered at Heritage Auctions. They come from the collection of producer Joe Hale.
Black felt pen and Magic Markers, early 1980s.
I have always enjoyed working at this stage in production. Just imagining character concepts inspired by the story material. The movie was based on The Chronicles of Prydain books by Lloyd Alexander, and they are wonderful. With today's technology The Black Cauldron would make heck of a live action film.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Melody Time

I remember Ward Kimball stating in an interview how ridiculous he thought some the Disney film titles of the 1940s sounded to him. "Fun and Fancy Free, Make Mine Music, Melody Time...what kind of titles are those?"
Be that as it may, the short films within these features contain some beautiful character as well as effects animation. And there is also a sense of experimenting with a variety of unique styles.
It ain't Pinocchio, but these movies are still very enjoyable to watch and to study.
Above a 1948 magazine article, followed by artwork from each of the film's segments.

RR Auctions

S/R Labs

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Another Frame from MUSHKA

©Andreas Deja        

We are in the process of colorizing this scene, early on in the film. Sarah just received a gift from her Grandma, a Russian folklore doll. This all takes place in Kiev in 1975. 
The feedback from screening the film to select audiences in progress has been wonderful. 
Kathryn Beaumont told me how much she loves the film's story. Lisa Davis (Anita from 101 Dalmatians) voiced similar comments.