Pixar’s Andrew Dayton Visits SVA

February 11, 2011

Students from the BFA Computer Art, Computer Animation and Visual Effects Department and the BFA Film, Video and Animation Department gathered at the SVA Theatre on Wednesday, February 9, for a presentation by alumnus and Pixar animation studio Technical Director Andrew Dayton (BFA 1998 Computer Art). Following an introduction by Department Chair John McIntosh, Dayton walked students through the Pixar production pipeline with a presentation entitled Pencil to Pixels.

The presentation showed in-process sketches and test animations for layout, characters, sets, coloring, clothing, lighting and other aspects of award-winning films like Ratatouille, Toy Story 3 and Up. As Dayton took the students behind the scenes at Pixar, he also offered advice on thesis projects and looking for work in the digital-animation industry. “I have been rejected by every single major studio,” he said, and recommended sharpening basic artistic skills instead of relying too heavily on any specific technology: “The greatest classes that helped me were my core art classes.”

Following his presentation, Dayton took questions from the audience and then treated the students to a screening of Toy Story 3.

Image: Andrew Dayton and John McIntosh; photo by Brian Glaser.

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