- View Thomas's Creativepool profile here
"British born, School of Visual Arts (NYC) trained Animator and Illustrator. Obsessed with space, cities and everything else."
How long have you been a Freelancer for?
4 years, with periods of dreaded downtime.
Describe your work in one sentence.
Frame-by-Frame animation, with emphasis on detailed drawing.
What's the most important thing you've learnt in your line of work?
Slow and steady. By taking my time, I make better decisions.
What attracted you to your chosen field?
I'm a storyteller and drawer, so animation seems fitting. It's wonderful that animation brings ‘all four dimensions' to art, making it just a little magical. Additionally, the avenues for viewing animation grow.
Tell us about your best project to date.
My Master's final project was fun (and an exercise of self-centredness). In the ‘real world of animation', my current project is a delight. The Californian branch of Cartoon Network, who produce the Mad! Show (of the Mad! Magazine franchise), offered me scripts, with total creative freedom. These are so much fun to animate, and my work is on a national network! So far they're happy with what I'm producing, so I'm pleased. Unfortunately they aren't currently scheduled to be shown in the UK.
What sets you apart from your competitors?
I'm afraid it's ‘values' - content before style and skill before technology. There aren't any shortcuts if I want to stand out. I hope that doesn't make me sound five thousand years old. Actually, so what if it does!
If you could work on any project for any company/organisation, what would it be and who would it be for?
I would like to be involved in a traditional, feature length animation. Studio Ghibli springs to mind, but recently I'm concerned that they're trying too hard to ‘be all things to all men', forfeiting character that made their earlier films so amazing. I don't know if film distributors in the West have the patience for a traditionally produced animation, but the likes of Sylvain Chomet ( The Triplets of Belleville , The Illusionist ) prove there is an interest for these sorts of films. Most likely I would need to get involved with an independent venture, and hope to leap the hurdles and sidestep the nay-sayers!
What frustrates you the most about your job?
My incompetence and complacency, and as a result; finding a balance between work and life. A matter of efficiency. I am frustrated by inefficiency.
What pearl of wisdom can you offer to someone thinking about starting out as a freelancer?
Learn your craft, hone your skills, prepare to lose a lot of sleep and comfort.
If you could have ONE super power, what would it be?
Total efficiency. And reason. Again, I sound about five thousand years old.
What's your favourite bit of kit?
My aged Pentel 0.3 Automatic Pencil with HB leads. It's not a ‘bit of kit' anymore, it's a shamanistic, magical relic! An extension of my ‘self'! It's battered and brown and has a rusty pocket-clip – beautiful.
Tell us a random fact about yourself.
I have huge hands, but I draw small and meticulously, hunched over. I imagine a rhino peeling a tangerine is comparable.
What's your favourite song of all time?
I can't answer that question, but recently Corelli's La Follia has been on my playlist a lot. I'm a sucker for the Baroque.
What is your favourite app?
Google Maps. I have no sense of direction. And I'm inefficient.
Iphone or Blackberry?
I admire Blackberry's fight to keep going, we need the competition.
Too Cool for School or too School for Cool?
I am five thousand years old, I don't understand. Substance over Style.
Facebook or Twitter?
Twitter, by far. I love limitations, both to keep me from droning on, and also to spur invention. Twitter has recently made some decisions that harken to Facebook that worry me. Stick to elegant simplicity, Twitter!
Eat In or eat out?
For health reasons I'll go with ‘Eat In', but I'll take your free lunch if you're offering!
If you would like to step into the Creativepool Spotlight, email through some examples of your work