Chapter 33: After-Words
Well, no one is perfect.
Hundreds of happy messages have come to me since the time AWN began publishing this book on line, and only one piece of hate mail. In that one the anonymous (natch) writer ranted in heavily bleepable language – that ALL of my films sucked, and wished I would promptly die.
Well, no one is perfect. I don't think that I've achieved 100% rotten filmmaking, and I'm happy to say that all the other writers felt that I do have something positive to say about animation. I thank you all for your 99.9% praiseful letters.
Most of the writers wanted to know three things:
1. How did I get started.
2. What animation schools should they go to.
3. How can they get started. (i.e. get a job)
1. After my earliest smelly beginnings as a cartoonist, as delicately described in Chapter 10, "My Talent Discovered," I did go on to drawing on actual pape. Growing up in Hollywood I soon came into the thrall of the local animation studios, and developed movie mania. My parents could not afford to buy me what I yearned for, a real motor driven 16mm movie projector, so I started out at the age of 8 by making my own projector out of a shoe box. This is a photo of it; a reconstruction of my original hand made projector. A small mirror was inserted inside, behind the clear glass light bulb, in hopes of increasing its intensity. And ordinary magnifying glass was glued to the end of a cardboard toilet paper tube, which could be moved in an out in an effort to focus on a white bedsheet, pinned to my bedroom wall. Thus I obtained a dim projected image of colored ink drawings I made on a strip of what we called "onion-skin" paper, slowly drawn through a slot in the box by that handle, rescued from one of my mother's flour sifters. Well, you know there were no ready made high-tech plastic toys available in the ancient times of my childhood. But my lucky day arrived when my mother took me to downtown L.A. Christmas shopping at The May Company. In their Toyland, I spotted a device that made me wet my little pants all over again.