This course was created by Justin Ahrens. We are pleased to offer this training in our library.
Skill Level Intermediate
- [Narrator] This is an audio course. No need to watch, just listen. Welcome to the latest addition to LinkedIn Learning Podcasts. We've curated some of the best creative podcasts, and made them even easier to listen to. Each episode is split into sections. Use the links in the Contents area to skip to whichever section you like. We're always looking for new ways to help you learn, and we appreciate your feedback. Thanks for listening. - [Instructor] We'd love to dig in and explore some of the creative process and I had to admit up front. A lot of times people ask what is your favorite Pixar movie, and some people can't respond. I can respond. - [Instructor 2] Okay. - [Instructor 1] It's Up. - [Instructor 2] Right. Good taste. _ [Instructor 1] So I'd love to talk to you about that one. - [Instructor 2] All right, yeah, fun. - [Instructor 1] So I listened and watched one of your interviews that you did for, I think it was the Minnesota National Public Radio, West Minister... - [Instructor 2] Oh yeah. - [Instructor 1] And you said something that I found really interesting. And you talked about the movie Dumbo. Tell me why Dumbo is one of your favorite films. - [Instructor 2] I don't know, Dumbo is just deceptively simple is the thing. You look at it and it seems very basic and cartoon and whatever, but it's so emotional, you know. Everybody always cries when the Baby Mine song and they were somehow able to take the complexity of this relationship, the mother-kid relationship and distill it down into really candy-coated, fun to watch but deep and interesting. I mean it's just very well told, it's a good story. And weirdly, I was doing some research about it. From the very first pitch until it came out was like a year and half, so it puts us to shame on so many levels because they did it so fast. It's like a third of the time. - As you can imagine, Pete was a kid, he was just entranced by stories, imagination and technology from a young age. And he bought that same enthusiasm when he began working on his early film projects. - [Instructor 2] Yeah, I definitely liked making stuff. You know how there's always the kid who's drawing stuff in the backs of his notepads and everyone's like, "wow, look at that." That was not me. (Instructor 1 laughs) I wanted to be that kid but I really struggled with drawing, I couldn't, I guess I had ideas of what I wanted to achieve, and I wasn't that good, and so I worked hard at it, but then I also liked to take apart tape recorders and make puppets and do all sorts of dorky things that none of the other cool kids did. (both instructors laugh) But I guess it's ultimately what got me here. I'd draw something and like, that doesn't look like a photograph. I want it to look like a photo, 'cause you know some people can draw like that and just have the shading and everything, but ultimately, you realize in the long run, it's not about that, right, it's about the deeper ideas. That's what makes or breaks you. Because given enough passion for something, I mean I definitely want to stand up and defend you against people who say "you don't have it," because I think there is a certain amount of like, okay the world's not fair, that guy has an amazing god-given talent, I don't know how, but the thing that gets you further is passion, the idea that you just everyday show up and do it again and again and again and I think for those of us here at a place like Pixar, we get paid to do it, so it's even easier to support that habit. (laughs) 'Cause you have to. And so you get better. You're given this great gift of the opportunity to test it out, and it's like practicing. You know, you'd never give a kid a violin and say all right, you're playing in Carnegie Hall tomorrow. You know, it's like no, you have to play for years and years and years, and it's the same with filmmaking. - [Instructor 1] So how did you get from Minnesota to where did you go to school again? - [Instructor 2] I went to the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, California. And I went to this school in Bloomington, in high school that had a program that placed you with areas in which you were interested in. So, like a friend of mine worked at 3M and the Artificial Intelligence Lab, and I worked at a cartoon house making commercials for banks and you know stuff like that. But it was a great chance to just see how the whole thing works. How does it get from a drawing onto film, and how do you synchronize the sound and all this, and it was through that I started asking around, if I were going to do this, for a living, how do I learn, is there a place to go to school? And CalArts was one, very few at the time that offered that. A school that actually trained you to make animated films. Nowadays, there's a lot of them. A lot of choices. - [Instructor 1] So what was your portfolio like then? Did they have some sort of courses that you had to have so many drawings, or you know show some sort of style. - [Instructor 2] They had guidelines on their site, and I think most schools too, and they'll give you even little examples of things that they'd like to see, drawings solidity and things, but you know ultimately, and this is true of almost everywhere I think, and Pixar included, there's lots of stories where people turned in what they thought Pixar wanted to see, and then finally out of desperation just said, "you know what, I'm going to put in what I want," and that's ultimately what gets you in, like having some ability to kind of expose part of who you are, a deeper sense of you in your work. That's I think what got me in there and ultimately here. 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