From the pen of Pixar animator Aaron Hartline, here’s a highly endearing letter of encouragement to an aspiring animator named Willie Downs that only serves to confirm my suspicion that employees of Pixar can actually do no wrong. Downs – a huge fan of Pixar from the beginning who, it seems, was simply in need of the very support illustrated below – has since taken Hartline’s advice and is currently a student of the animation school at which he teaches: Animation Mentor. Congratulations to both parties.
Recommended reading: The Pixar Touch.
Hi Willie –
Thank you for the kind words! Reading your letter, all I could think was DON’T GIVE UP! If you really love it, then don’t let anyone tell you it’s too hard, that you will fail.
When I took a tour at Disney right out of Highschool, I showed the tour guide/animator my work. She said ‘It’s easier to get a job as a professional basketball player than getting a animator position at Walt Disney Studios’. My mom said ‘Are you sure you want to do this?’ I was so angry. So motivated. I knew if I worked hard that one day..some day..I could do it! Took me 14 years of trying but it happened.
You can do it Willie!!
Work hard and really want it!
Check out www.animationmentor.com. I teach there. It’s a great school w teachers who are professional working animators at the major studios.
Hope to be working with you one day.