We are so excited to feature this new piece of art from Disney animator Benson Shum. Shum was hired at Disney to work on Wreck-It Ralph and then Frozen. He currently spends his time working on the upcoming Big Hero 6 (November 2014). When asked about getting started in the animation business, Shum said he knew he wanted to be an animator since his high school days. “I applied to Capilano College’s commercial animation program, but didn’t get in the first time. I ended up getting a job and worked on my drawings after work for a year. I applied again the following year and got in!”. In retrospect, Shum said he was glad he didn’t get in on his first try. “It made me appreciative and work harder when I got in the second time.” Read more about Shum and take a close look at his artwork after the break!
After graduating, Shum was hired as an animator at a local television animation studio in Vancouver, BC doing a variety of jobs from character design to storyboarding. “That was great to learn a bit of every department. After two years, I wanted to try learning 3d, so I attended Sheridan College for a year. At the time there wasn’t any work in 3d, so I went back to doing 2d work. I eventually got a 3d gig in games and film in London, England for two years. After that, I moved back to Vancouver and worked at various VFX and CG studios.” While attending his first CTN Expo a few years back, Shum got to talk to some people at Disney and was eventually hired by the studio. He almost makes it sound easy. But one look at his impressive portfolio and you can see why Disney was eager to snap him up.
Our thanks to Shum for taking the time to contribute this stylish piece. Check out his artwork of The Incredibles family below and read on for more about him in his own words!
Name: Benson Shum
I currently live in…Burbank, California
I consider my hometown to be…Vancouver, BC where I was born and raised and Tacoma, WA where I spend my other time with my partner.
My favorite Pixar Movie is…
The Incredibles. A movie I can watch over and over again. The music, design, story and animation blended together perfectly. Finding Nemo is up there too! I love the colors in that film.
My favorite Pixar character is… Dory from Finding Nemo because I laugh every time she is on screen.
Tell us about your piece:
I picked The Incredibles because it’s one of my favorite Pixar movies. I also just read they are making The Incredibles 2 while I was working on this! I can’t wait. For my piece, I wanted to play with the old 50s comic book/poster feel with the colors, and mix it with clean simple shapes for the characters.
Who/What inspires you?
Nature and people inspire me. Everywhere you look, there is something interesting about it. The angles, shapes and color from nature are endless. Mary Blair and Maurice Noble are a couple of artists I really admire. I love the whimsical feeling they both create with simple shapes, but yet it looks complex and says so much.
Recommend something, anything to our readers:
Definitely check out The Noble Approach: Maurice Noble and The Zen of Animation Design book. It’s a great read and really inspiring. Anything from Mary Blair is amazing as well.
I’m excited to be a part of Susanita’s Little Gallery‘s next show called Changes, in Spain. It’ll be out in a couple of months! And I have blog and tumblr too:
If you’d like to be considered for a PixArt feature, send us a link to your portfolio for consideration. Contact Us today!
View all previous PixArt pieces here.