We recently had a Q & A sesh with veteran Pixar Animator and Story Artist Matthew Luhn. We talked about his work at Pixar, Toy Story, and of course, his favorite characters. See his answers to our questions below.
(Q). You first joined Pixar when computer animation was in its infancy. What was that like?
(A). It was exciting. Every day we were discovering new tricks or techniques on how to bring our characters to life through a computer! It was all brand new.
(Q). Over the years you made the transition from Animator to Story Artist. It's obvious that somewhere along the way you discovered that storytelling was more than a hobby for you. For those having a difficult time pinpointing their passion, what are some indicators they should look for in the discovery phase?
(A). Follow your bliss! If you're doing a job you don't enjoy, then something needs to change. Ask yourself what you really want do, then follow it with all your heart.
(Q) Stories (especially those that are animated) go through a lot of rewrites as they are developed. Of the numerous Pixar film(s) you worked on, which one changed the most? And why?
(A) Toy Story 2 went through the most changes because it started off as a direct to video movie. We storyboarded and restoryboarded Toy Story 2 at least 20 times. But in the end, we believe it turned out great.
(Q) The Pixar universe is full of characters we can relate to. Is there one particular character you identify with the most? Why?
(A) I would say I'm a blend between Marlin and WALL-E. I'm a dad, so I can identify with Marlin's overprotective personality. As for WALL-E's personality, I'm also a hopeless romantic at heart like him.
(Q) What person, place OR thing is inspiring you right now?
(A) The thing that is inspiring me the most right now, is how people and companies are using storytelling to make a positive impact on the world.
(Q) In August, For the Love of Pixar is hosting a workshop with you as the instructor. Who is this workshop for and what kind of things will they learn?
(A) My workshop in August is for everyone who wants to learn how to craft stories that are memorable, impactful, and personal. From Disney/Pixar enthusiasts, to filmmakers and business people, anyone can benefit from this workshop. To sign-up, click here.