2010 Ryman Arts Sklar Intern at Walt Disney Animation Studios
As an animator, I dreamed of getting to one day work in a grand, amazing studio such as Disney, but I just did not know how to get my foot in the door; Until I got this letter from Ryman. I applied thinking there was no way at all I would get it, there were so many other talented artist out there that it felt impossible. Then I got the call from Matt Roberts at the Walt Disney Animation Studio and I almost died!
I went in as a 2D animator and learned that I would be working with 13 other interns through the course of 10 weeks. All the interns were there for different talents: 3D modeler, Rigging, Lighting and Texture, Visual Concept Art, Character Design, etc. The first 4 weeks we were assigned a mentor to work with, someone within the studio that could help us bring our talents to their full potential. Amazingly enough, I got to work with the great Eric Goldberg, who is best known for creating and animating the Genie from Aladdin. I learned more from working two hours with him then I had in 2 years of school!
The last 6 weeks were the tough part. As a team, all the interns had to work together to create an animated short. We had to start from scratch, include both 3D and 2D animation and keep it down to thirty seconds long. They made sure to tell us it didn’t have to be completed either. They just wanted us to do our best. But being the over achievers we were, we managed to create a completed 2 minute and 30 second short that was screened and shown to the entire studio. It was an amazing feeling to sit there and watch as some of the greatest Disney animators came to see our animated short and loved it. I have never been more proud of myself then when I saw my name rolling up in the credits on the big screen. And in the process, the team of interns had become a family. We all become amazingly close and still keep in touch today. Having them in my life now is was of the things I cherished most from this internship. That and the fact that I can now say I’ve had the chance to work at the wonderful Walt Disney Animation Studio.
Every Imagineer I met was helpful with guidance and making sure I got the most out of my time there. I could not thank Ryman and WDI enough for the opportunity to do something I love and work with people who love what they do too. I hope to return to WDI and see what else I can learn.