Answering some questions!

Question time! Answer time! Storyboarding, directing! Hear all about it!

After the break:

Hello Emma Coats! My name is Kacy. I am a 12 year old girl who has the dream to direct for Pixar Animation Studios one day. I already have a screenplay going. I won’t tell you what it is about over the internet, it’s too public. My question is: How old do I have to be to direct my film at Pixar? Thank you for your time. :) Bye!

Finish your screenplay and write more! Draw all the time, grab a camera and shoot short films with your friends. Beyond just practicing your story sense, a big part of directing is leadership — getting people to want to do what you want them to do. If you have little brothers or sisters I suspect you already have a head start on this.

Another big part of directing for animation is communication - whether through pitching (clearly communicating and exciting others about your story), drawing (picture is worth a thousand words…), and delivering clear feedback to the people you’re responsible for.

As far as I know there is no minimum age enforcement for the directors at Pixar… however they tend to be at least old enough to drive a car. So you’ve got a couple years.

hello I’m 19 , I’m a beginner in drawing is there any chance that one day I can be like you , and please can you give some advices to improve my skill .

Draw. ALL THE TIME. Take a sketchbook with you everywhere. Draw the people on the bus. Draw kids at playgrounds. Draw in coffeeshops. Draw the environments you’re in. Do all this stuff until it’s second nature, and then keep doing it.

When you’re storyboarding or doing art for a living, you don’t have the time to figure out the basics of how you’re going to draw something. You’ve got to operate on a high level - what are the SPECIFICS of what you’re drawing. To do this, you have to have practiced the basics enough that they’re subconscious.


Hi Emma! Is it possible to ask for some advice regarding a novel I’m working on?
Go for it. PM me your email and I’ll get back to you.
Now that you have your sights set of directing, when will we see your first feature?
I’m gonna go ahead and say within the next five years. If you follow the tumblr or twitter, rest assured that whatever this feature ends up being, you will hear so much about it that your ears will bleed. Your ears will bleed partly because I’ll talk so much about it, and partly because bleeding ears are just an unfortunate side effect of wild anticipation.
What’s the best way to write gags/jokes for a story?
Matthew Luhn (story guy extraordinaire) has this simple process where he lists the character and the situation and riffs on it. Gags and jokes aren’t my strongest suit, but a general rule of thumb is to imagine your character in the situation and think about how they would do something differently than the normal way.
It’s all about setting up expectations (a familiar situation) and paying off with the unexpected but true (the way that specific character deals with it).
When storyboarding for animation, what is essential to put into those storyboards?
Everything! Storyboarding is so much faster than background painting, modeling, or animation. Don’t put off solving a problem in story and figure you’re going to solve it in another department down the road - those departments are going to have their own unique problems to solve, and they can do a better job if you give them a good leg-up in story.
What your boards should show: acting choices, camera staging, character staging, the general layout of the set (no cheating), and occasional indication of special lighting conditions (if they’re important and story-driven).
Hi Emma! Really big fan of you and your work :) My question for you is one you’ve probably heard before. I’d like to work as a story artist for animation (TV or feature). I’ve made myself a nifty first-timer’s portfolio and I’m ready to go, I think. Have you got any advice or tips for someone hoping to break into the industry, so to speak?
Start submitting your portfolio to story internships (Disney, Dreamworks, and Pixar all have summer internships), story artist openings, and story revisionist openings. Go to CTN and meet people, and if you get along with them and like their work, ask them to give you feedback on your portfolio. Don’t be obnoxious about it, but at the same time don’t let a fear of being obnoxious stop you from asking.
Keep practicing, storyboarding and getting faster. I’m boarding for TV now and that means boarding 10 script pages every four weeks. That can wind up being 400 finished boards, more if it includes an action scene. That’s also not counting the boards you do that don’t make it in. It seems daunting, but you can work your way up to that capacity… practice!
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    Reblogging so you all can read this. Emma Coats always makes a lot of good points.
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