Watching animated movies as a seasoned adult brings back a genuinely magical sense of nostalgia. As a child, you were probably more focused on the hilarious quips and unforgettable songs than the pure artistry at hand. But as an adult, you’ve probably realized that every detail of an animated film is examined with a fine-tooth comb. The colors, the recreation of certain sounds, and even the shape of a character’s cupid’s bow are elements that need discerning.
This week, we honor the art of animation by spotlighting some of its most meticulous, dedicated workers. Follow these five character designers for an intimate portrait of the patience and passion that goes into each element of animated films.
Léo Rezende | @leeorezende
Léo Rezende is a freelance animator who specializes in 3D artistry, with skills ranging from digital sculpting to texturing. Any animation fans will delight in the intricate detail of his Instagram feed, which features both personal and professional projects. Currently, Rezende works as a Character Modeler at Madrid’s Skydance Animation studio.
Madeline | @madelinesculpts
This Pixar Character Model and Rig Technical Director is exceptionally talented, to say the least. On her Instagram feed, Madeline introduces countless characters with detailed descriptions of their backgrounds. She also provides behind-the-scenes peeks at character research, which most recently included feeding a Red Panda for Turning Red.
Brittany Myers | @brittmyersart
Netflix Lead Character Designer Brittany Myers’ credits include upcoming films like Escape from Hat and Jacob and the Sea Beast. If you can’t wait to see either one, you can enjoy a sneak preview by checking out her Instagram. Her feed features detailed character illustrations from her work at Netflix, Walt Disney, and a number of other prominent companies.
Petri Aaltonen | @justsketchingandstuff
Petri Aaltonen’s Instagram feed features humans, dogs, frogs, and witches’ hands, amongst other personalities. Each character design by this dedicated freelancer showcases expressive emotions, detailed textures, and insight on the tools he used to create each. If you’re an animation fan in need of design inspiration, look no further than this authentic account.
Gabriel Soares | @gabriel.soareszz
Brazilian concept artist and 3D modeler Gabriel Soares has a knack for recreating realistic human emotions. Each character illustration features a natural balance of grit, tenderness, and charm. While each is exceptional, the one that caught my eye the quickest is a rendering of his grandfather João, fast asleep in a beach chair. The deep sentiment shines through. Soares’ clients include Netflix, DreamWorks, Hasbro, and Warner Bros.