Sunday, January 1, 2012


Hey Guys!!

After a 9 months Journey in Portland - a DREAM COME TRUE........

I am HOME.....

To Explain what this experience was to me.........

You know when a Kid says something like -I wana be an Astronaut ..........Heavy Weight Boxing Champion of the World

....Or....... I wana be a Dancer -Artist- Football player, Scientist, make movies???


and then........

................. Having it actually come TRUE
like wanting something from when you were in that YOUNG Magical place in a child's imagination.......


I as a kid watched movies like most kids did-
like - Clash Of The Titans- Secret of Nimh -Jason and the Argonauts-Pinochio-Star Wars series-Land Before Time-Dark Crystal-Robocop's-Terminator-Nightmare Before Christmas-Wallace and Gromit-Countless sci fi-horror -Monsters created through the magic of Stopmotion animation and The Hand made FX Arts of the 80's.

I wanted to create that same magic I saw in those films.......but that as a career didn't have much life after the invention of CG.....So ....I went CG.......and having worked in cg animation for so long.

I NEVER thought I would be a part of a hand made -Miniature -STOPMOTION Animated Feature Film!!!!

DANG.....just typing it gives me goosebumps.

Well......It just happened and I got to work with the most talented bunch of folks I have ever been around in my entire career.

The Pure SCALE and QUALITY of the Production was pretty much astonishing to my country
boy CG eyes.....

I am definitely changed FOREVER having been a part of the film......

I worked harder than I ever have......and My Growth as an animator was Contant and PAINFULL.....stretching growth....


The biggest reward in working on this film ....was the fact that EVERY SHOT.....I did my VERY best that I could possibly do at my current skill level........

In my career I have often had to make sacrifices in the quality of my work do to TIME constraints and schedules to meet. ...

This has always been very frustrating to me........ but I have understood the need in a production and budget to move fast ..........

so having tasted the fruit of a studio that demands the very best as well as supporting the Artists in making it happen.......It is all I want in my Artistic Future.........

LIFE Changing stuff...............I will continue to work in CG for a few more years and then we will be moving to Portland to make a NEW Life in the Feature Stopmotion Animation world....

More News and a Breakdown of Lessons learned to come!!

Trick Of the Week-
Dad's back in the Gym with my latest TOY.
Shels Knee is Back in action!!
She is flyin again.



Jeff Lafferty said...

Congratulations on "making it happen" man.

I'm glad to read this post, cause I know whats coming next ... new shots for THE LINE ... can't wait!

Dean said...

A heart-warming and inspirational post. You did it!! Fantastic!

Ps The Secret Of Nimh is awesome!

Pps I still want to be an astronaut :D

Shelley Noble said...

Mucho Congratulations, Justin!

It's a tremendous victory.

Yay to Shel's knee too.

emilymarie38 said...

Stumbled upon this blog somehow and it has been absolutely inspiring to read. I am going to school to be a stop-motion animator and ever since Coraline, I've had my heart set on LAIKA as my dream job. So reading through your blog and walking through that experience with you was wonderful. I felt excited for you! haha...
Especially since you have a family. I would love to have a family one day and have always wondered if I could keep up my love of animation as well. So seeing you continue to keep up with your career and have a good family was additionally inspiring. Thanks so much for blogging about all of this! :)

Gregory Sesma said...

Go Justin!!!!

tonychauzer said...

That is so wild Justin, congrats are definitely in order. Eager to see this film when it hits the theaters :)

Was a treat to read about the whole ride too. Hope you get some rest man, all the best to you on snagging that next feature gig!

jriggity said...

Jeff}Thanks man!Yes sir.....WE took stock of the garage yesterday and fired up those lights...Puppets will be animating very soon.

Dean}Thanks bro!! is awesome....I am surrounded by cels from the film in my office....just to fill me with inspiration.

Ha....its not too late man...SPACE CAMP!!

Shelly}Thanks Shelley....and YES....her knee is doing awesome......weve been workin it in the Danger room ....and its holding up.

Emilyvmarie}So glad to hear from definitely the place to be for stop motion....You can get there too....just stay focused and keep your target in the cross hairs!!!

Thanks for following and lending support .

Gregory}thanks man!

tonyc}thanks man.....I see a feature film in your future too man!!.....keep kickin butt in cg land.....and thanks for the support.

Daesup said...

Congratulations on your first journey to stop-mo feature and welcome back home in LA. Fuel up with the love of your family and blast again with bigger surprise!!

Alonso said...

awesome! I was just rewatching you guys on the extras on Gerald, your passion is so tangible :) pretty incredible journey to have shared with us internet folks.

congratulations on surviving your baptism of fire into films, sounds like it was pretty emotionally and physically taxing, guess not sleeping for 3 years on gerald was good practice :) I can only imagine how hard it was to be so distant from the family.

so you're sticking with CG? not gonna try and get in for a longer stint at ShadowMachine?

looking forwards to what your bringing for 2012

Anonymous said...

That is so awesome, man. Congrats- I am happy for you.

Rich Johnson said...

congrats justin!! woohoo!! ya back flips! You guys have the coolest house.

jriggity said...

Daesup}Thanks Bro!Awesome to see you here my fellow Dream Chaser....and You better believe it man!! I will be back.

Alonso}so cool man...the passion is 100% real. Yeah - you said it man.....HARD STUFF....but incredible GROWTH...

as far as sticking with CG.....its just too good financially to leave- insurance family benifits.....this stuff is pretty rare in stop motion unless your at a HUGE feature house.

Lots of new fun work ahead....Ill be sharing with you guys well as a whole new film from Me and Shel.

Don}thanks man!

Rich}thanks dood....we love our house too!!!....some day ya gota come and play.

Joel Fletcher said...

Hey Justin! How fantastic that you were given the opportunity, the time, and support to give your all to your shots. It is extremely rare to be able to truly do your best work on any production, and I'm sure your passion and dedication to the art resulted in some incredible work. Plus there is the feeling of ownership that you rarely ever get from CG.

However, most stop-motion productions are cranked-out low budget operations. Typically lighting and setup takes up the morning, then the animator is expected to get his shot done with only a portion of the day left. And stop-motion gigs pay less than CG, even though it is a more difficult art form. These are a couple of the reasons that I have stayed in the CG arena, even though stop-motion is my first love. I completely understand why you are back to doing CG after this show. At least you have your own stop-motion work to keep you fulfilled.

Emily Tomasik said...

Congrats Justin! You're a real inspiration to me!

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