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This installment of the Creative Inspirations series takes viewers into the life and home studio of one of the entertainment industry's most sought-after motion graphics designer. Rick Morris is a classically trained illustrator who successfully transitioned into the world of motion graphics. His highly expressive works have appeared as opening titles for films such as Mi Vida Loca, television programs like "Survivor," and commercials for Toyota, Kyocera, and Michelin. He's also designed the menu titles for the DVD of "The Sopranos." This installment of Creative Inspirations shows how Rick evolves his skills and applies them to moving images, how he continually develops his creative perspectives, and how he became a popular teacher at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena and Otis College of Design in Los Angeles. To learn more about Rick Morris, visit his website at nobleassassins.com.
(Music playing.) I got here and now to this place I'm at right now in the industry by my past and previous skill sets which was illustration and print design. I moved to Los Angeles from Detroit in 1990. One thing led to another to another. It was like L.A. was just like a lasagna, with just like layers to go through. There was nothing like extraordinary or fancy about the stuff I was doing.
Work people, the average person could care a less about, but through the magic of editing and my kind of like sensibilities and sitting in on the session, I turned like the most mediocre work into something like interesting. You know what I mean? At that point I realized I was a commodity. I was viable, I was marketable. I could move myself around. I had ammo in my hand to make something of it. It was totally up to me.
I started shopping that baby around like for all it was worth. Got me a gig at Fox. I did my time there, freelanced during the day, freelanced at night, still just moving, moving, moving. Just realizing that if I took my resources and I took my sensibilities and I took my skills and combined them, no matter what I was challenged with, even material that could ultimately defeat me, I could come out winning. I put that stuff together to where it all made sense to somebody and that propelled me onto my very next thing.
I have never said no to a dare, which is the reason that it's gotten me into like, these conferences, these speaking conventions, all these other situations I have been in is because if you say no once, you may never get asked again. And so I tend not to pass up opportunities. But one of my first big projects again, as far as crossing over, was working on a small independent movie here and just being asked to do the title work for a film they were shooting at Echo Park called Mi Vida Loca.
The whole title sequence was a series of still cards that were done like Chelo prison style and she personally sent me like all these different envelopes with the crying clowns and the elaborate flower borders and everything that inmates wrote to their girlfriends, you know what I mean, as reference for the design in this thing. Ultimately in the end, I turned out like 13 -14 different cards for her. At that point, I figured like this is it. I am here, I am in L.A., I am doing the L.A. thing, I am with the L.A. people. I just felt like I was in the stream.
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