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Toon-In-Talk Episode 13: Interview with Rick Pickens

Hello and welcome to thirteenth episode of Fanboy Nation’s Toon-In-Talk, your rendezvous for animation interviews.  If you are listening to this podcast, you’ve probably considered becoming an animator at some point.  The traditional method is to attend a university animation program, but higher education isn’t necessarily the correct route for everyone.  There are dozens of online programs dedicated to teaching 3D animation, but there is only one that focuses on the
traditional, hand drawn method.  Rick Pickens discusses his animation career and his new animation program: “Animation in 12 BLANK Lessons.”

Episode 13

  • Rick worked in animation in 1987 at the same company as Doug TenNapel when digital animation started to gain traction.
  • He’s worked away from the animation industry for some years, but he continues to be involved with teaching, puppetry, training courses, and his own projects.
  • Whitney and Rick both agree that we are now on the edge of a new animation boom and it’s fantastic and exciting!
  • Joe Murray was the animator who branched out and tried to form his own content platform.  It was called KaboingTV.
  • The cartoons today are radically different from anything ever created before and people want to see new and different things.
  • One of the reasons Rick created his program is that he wants to see more cartoons and he wants to give people the opportunity to make them.
  • Rick explains that it’s better to start the process now then waiting.
  • He’s helping potential animation students get their feet wet by creating an online course through Udemy called “Animation in 12 BLANK Steps” and he also has a free online course.
  • Rick based his program’s name on Bob Heath’s book, Animation in Twelve Hard Steps.
  • What makes his program different from other animation programs is that it takes a student through the entire animation pipeline, ending with a finished project they can share.
  • “Animation in 12 BLANK Steps” is designed for fans of traditional, 2D animation.  You need to bring a desire to create something with old-fashioned drawing tools or a drawing program on your tablet.
  • The program isn’t a deep dive into technique, but rather to carry through your idea and finish a project.
  • Whitney has psychic powers, not really.  When she looks at people’s artwork, she can tell who has influenced them.
  • If you want to be animator or a comic book artist/writer, the way to do it these days is to get in it now!
  • Rick declares, “Let’s go make some funny cartoons!”
  • Links