Thanks to Disney Pixar Studios I was given the opportunity to go on a tour of Pixar Animation Studios. I attended an all-expense paid trip as part of the Incredibles 2 Event, read more details about the #Incredibles2Event.
Disney Pixar brought out a great group of bloggers to get a behind the scenes look into the making of The Incredibles 2 movie that releases on June 15th. I was honored to be among these fabulous women.
Tour Pixar Animation Studios
Even our press badges were incredible – pun intended. We spent two days exploring and learning at the Pixar Animation Studios. There was so much to see that I could have wandered around for days more! It truly is a magical place and you get inspired just by entering the door.
I first shared this photo on Instagram, giving my followers a peek into my initial reaction to visiting Pixar Studios. I expected to be surprised but I was shocked at some of the things I learned. Have you ever heard the saying ‘too many hands in the pot’?
It takes a special kind of people to work at Pixar Studios. It is truly amazing to hear their stories and see how many people work on a small portion of a larger scale of animation. It takes excellent communication, the ability to bounce ideas off of one another, expand and build onto another’s project, and a lot of trust. The team is loyal and helpful. They inspire one another, listen carefully to ideas being explained, and work hard to create the vision as a team.
There is a team of seven that edits the hair on the Incredibles characters for each frame that they move so it looks realistic in animation! That is their full-time job, so tedious yet impressive! You cannot imagine how much work goes into creating these family favorite animated films.
Steve Jobs designed this building, later purchased by Disney. He wanted the open concept to encourage creativity and collaboration. By keeping all areas open and placing the restrooms and break room downstairs, this forced all employees to get face time with one another. It is a beautiful building and I was instantly inspired. I would love to work at a place like Pixar Studios.
The building is heavily decorated for the film the staff is working on at any given time. Currently half of the building is decorated with The Incredibles 2 concept art while the other half is decked out in Pixar Coco, the most recently released Pixar film at theaters. This summer they will redo the building to bring in Toy Story 4.
They do not only redecorate the building by hanging new concept art for a Pixar film, they paint the walls to match the colors of the movie! Pixar wants each of their employees to be inspired every step of their day at work. They want them immersed in the project they are working on.
Which means, the colors they see, the art they admire, and the full atmosphere of the building. The creators can take a walk through the halls to see the original artwork that was designed for The Incredibles 2 film as well as some of the sculptures.
The storyboards that hang on the walls show the mood transitions in the movie. This part was pretty fascinating. If you stood back you could tell from the change in hues if the given scene of the film was sad, happy, energetic, or filled with action. You can tell how much work goes into the lighting of an animated movie, something we – as viewers, take for granted.
Some of the artwork hung on the walls gives the animators a chance to look back at designs that were brainstormed and not implemented. Or if they are working on a scene that takes place at the Incredibles family home, they can get a look at what was already created to be inspired outside their computer screen.
With each animated character in a movie, they must create a sculpture. This is how they create the animation to scale compared to other characters and scene sets. It also helps with 360-degree movement to see how the head is shaped.
While going on a tour of Pixar Studios, I fell in love with this Sheriff Woody. Toy Story was the first Pixar film so holds a special place in a lot of hearts. I also couldn’t pass up an opportunity to take a photo of Bing Bong from Inside Out, our whole family loved that film.
Create Your Own Super – Pixar Concept Art
To get an understanding of how an animated film starts, we took part in a hands-on experience.
Concept art is all about having fun, playing with shapes, colors and designs, and finding your creative inspiration. No need to worry about the specifics of designing the face of your superhero or small details, you just dream it up and craft it out.
We created our own superhero concept art collage using scrapbook paper. This process reminds me of creating a rough draft of a craft. Like an outline.
My daughter’s favorite color is purple and her 16th birthday was the same week, so I had her on my mind while creating my super.
Pixar Archives Tour
I never really thought about what Pixar does with all those original drawings, sculptures, paintings, and drafting that goes into making a movie. It only makes sense that they keep it organized in their archives. When they first started working on The Incredibles 2 three years ago, they went back into the archives for the first film and pulled out sketches to get ideas.
Each of the Pixar Archives employees has their master degrees in some sort of preservation – library and/or museum science. You can tell by hearing them talk how much they love their career. They take pride in preserving the amazing works of arts and keeping it ready for future animators to be inspired.
I never thought about how useful the archives would be to the Pixar team. There were characters sketched for the first Incredibles movie that were never used and now are being revived for Incredibles 2, 14 years later.
Can you believe that Edna almost looked like this? There is so much artwork that takes hours to create that is never used. The Pixar team takes pride in how much work they put into each character until they get it just right. Each artist is honored to have their original work stored in the Pixar archives.
This trip was one that will go down in the memory book of a lifetime. It was amazing to tour Disney Pixar Studios!
Set your calendars now for June 15th to see Disney Pixar Incredibles 2 in theaters! I’m sworn to secrecy for now, but I was given the chance to see 35 minutes of Incredibles 2 and you will NOT want to miss it, trust me.
Have you ever visited The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco? If you missed my post about my tour, check it out. So much to enjoy for all ages.
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