DNEG recently had the honour of hosting veteran Animator James Baxter at our animation studios. James spent some time touring the animation department’s facilities, where our team are hard at work on feature animation ‘Ron’s Gone Wrong’, before giving one of his world-famous talks to DNEG animation staff.
James is currently working with Netflix as Director of Character Animation. Before this, he has enjoyed an illustrious 30 year career creating some of the most famous and pivotal moments in animated films, including Disney’s original ‘The Lion King’ and ‘Beauty and the Beast’, ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’ and Dreamworks’ ‘Shrek 2’ to name but a few. He commented that ‘Rafiki’ from ‘The Lion King’ was a personal favourite to animate, and talked on his longstanding love of animating horse characters. James has given lectures all over the world, including at the California Institute of the Arts.
He spent the afternoon showing the team at DNEG how he approaches hand drawn animation and reflecting on the development of computer animation over the years. The team watched the ‘animation guru’ demonstrate and explain his techniques for character animation, while talking about his love for the craft and how it has changed over the last 30 years.