• From fan boy and odd boy to Pixar Star

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    Coming back to Manila for a visit, Ronnie del Carmen gives this as advice to fellow Filipinos: ‘Make something. Complete the task.’ PHOTO COURTESY OF EDDIE BOY ESCUDERO

    Coming back to Manila for a visit, Ronnie del Carmen gives this as advice to fellow Filipinos: ‘Make something. Complete the task.’ PHOTO COURTESY OF EDDIE BOY ESCUDERO

    Pixar Animation Studio’s Vice President for Creative Pete Docter and co-director Ronnie del Carmen arrived in town a week ago to discuss their working relationship and promote their successful movie—the company’s 15th film—Inside Out.

    And indeed, it is such a positive thing to see a talented, determined and hardworking “kababayan” as del Carmen live a childhood dream.

    As per the press kit, Del Carmen, who graduated from the University of Santo Tomas with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Advertising started out as an animation fan. He used to watch Disney’s Wonderful World of Color; and classics like Fantasia and Dumbo further fueled his interest in animation. He was “influenced by Carl Barks comics, monster and sci-fi films, Alfred Hitchcock and David Lean films and illustrators, and graphic designers like Bill Peet, Ollie Johnston and Mary Blair.”

    He watched a lot of movies and wanted to be “part of movies someday.” But being a cinephile back then meant you were often the odd kid out. “If you were a young Filipino male who doesn’t play basketball, you were ‘off’,” he said.

    But still, he kept gravitating towards what he loved. He worked on the set of Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now, which was shot here in the Philippines in the ‘70s, then moved on to doing storyboard work for Batman: The Animated Series. He and his team storyboarded that particularly tender opening (the Carl and Ellie prologue) for the movie, Up.

    Coming back to Manila for a visit (which I presume involved a lot of meetings, interviews and eating), del Carmen has this quick bit of advice for creative souls who also want to make their dreams come true: “Make something. Complete the task.”

    So do something, finish it, and get feedback.

    Cheers to you Mr. del Carmen and to all the Pix-noys out there. You are doing amazing work and inspiring a new generation of artists.

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