legends 2

30 04 2009

JOE GRANT was born may 15, 1908 in new york city. his father worked for one of randolph hearst’s newspapers, so it was natural that joe started in the same business. he became pretty successful with his celebritry caricatures beginning of the 1930s for the LOS ANGELES RECORD. walt disney was a big fan of his work and asked his artists to copy joe’s style for the characters in a 2 1/2 min ‘PARADE OF THE NOMINEES’ in the 1932 OSCAR presentation. it featured MICKEY MOUSE for the first time in color! pretty soon, in 1933, disney hired joe grant who designed as his first job all the celebrity characters in MICKEY’S GALA PREMIERE. by the mid-thirties he was in charge of the character development department at disney and every single character and model sheet had to be approved by him. for SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS he created the queen/witch, he co-wrote DUMBO and was responsible for the story development of FANTASIA and PINOCCHIO. in 1949 he left the studio and started his own ceramic tile and business card business. it took until 1989 when he returned to disney to work on all the feature films until his death in may 2005.


in a later post I will have some more about joe grant.
following are two pictures, with him, walt disney and dick huemer during FANTASIA, and one from a christmas party in 2003 with ollie johnston and franck thomas.



© disney enterprises, inc


29 04 2009

following are some hand-outs I prepared for my students. in most of ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S films there is usually one or 2 sequences that stand out. like the dream sequences in SPELLBOUND, the desert plane attack in NORTH BY NORTHWEST, the shower sequence in PSYCHO or like in this case, THE BIRDS, the bird attack. I am not a big fan of his films in general, to me they look a bit static, too much rear-projection, because he did not want to go on location and preferred to shoot everything on a set. the whole set atmosphere often looks artificial, the use of tons of light create a lot of shadows and you really feel like on a set. then I prefer FILM NOIR, where nearly everything was done on location, with limited lights, because the budgets were so small. but – these few ‘master’-sequences in hitchcock’s films make them unforgettable. he worked with some of the best designers, like ROBERT BOYLE and SAUL BASS. BASS, who designed numerous film posters, for hitchcock’s films as well, was responsible for the PSYCHO shower murder. ROBERT BOYLE storyboarded nearly the whole BIRDS film. hitchcock preferred to have everything planned well, he said – when the storyboard was finished, the film was finished for him. during the shooting he didn’t even care to look through the camera. he could draw very well himself and prepared the boards himself in his erlier films. I think the following storyboard is a masterpiece in planning, there is a lot to learn from.






© universal pictures

cut up

28 04 2009





© bilderfabrik

# 200

27 04 2009


for the 200. post I have selected some of GUSTAF TENGGREN’S beautiful designs for disney’s PINOCCHIO. he got the inspiration for the village from the german town of ROTHENBURG.






© disney enterprises, inc

legends 1

26 04 2009

Image by Joe Grant, © Jennifer Grant Castrup

Image by Joe Grant, © Jennifer Grant Castrup

Image by Joe Grant, © Jennifer Grant Castrup

Image by Joe Grant, © Jennifer Grant Castrup

Image by Joe Grant, © Jennifer Grant Castrup


© joe grant
© disney enterprises, inc


25 04 2009





© disney enterprises, inc
© amblin/universal

midnight 2

23 04 2009


© bilderfabrik