2018 Professionals

Excited to have our 2018 Professionals to share through panels, workshops, demos and lectures throughout the weekend. Talk one-on-one with them, purchase their art, and hear about their new projects at their booth.

KRIS WIMBERLY: @kris_dubbayoo

Kris Wimberly (often seen as “kris.w” on personal art and tv credits) is a storyboard artist for tv animation. For the last ten years, he’s worked at nearly every major tv animation studio including Nickelodeon, Disney TVA, Cartoon Network, Warner Bros., and several smaller animation studios around Burbank. His list of credits includes roles specializing in comedy and comedy-action, and he’s storyboarded on shows in nearly every version of tv animation – 2D, CG, Flash, script driven, board driven, Preschool, Kids TV, Primetime, and is even most currently working on his first animated feature at Universal! Kris and his team have shared tons of industry knowledge and experience through 5 seasons of The Animation Network podcast, newsletter and YouTube channel.

 

 

PETER PAUL: @adventuresofp2

GET TICKETS TO HIS WORKSHOPS: Storyboard Workshop

Alias: P2
Likes: Film. TV. Comics. Toys. Sweets.
Follow: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter @adventuresofp2
Titles: Story Artist. Animator. Teacher. Mentor. Your New Best Friend.Peter Paul is a story artist that has worked in both animation and live-action shows. He has worked consistently at most major studios: Warner Bros (upcoming Netflix show: Green Eggs & Ham), DreamWorks (Dragons: Race To The Edge), Disney (7D, TinkerBell & The Lost Treasure, Lilo & Stitch 2), Illumination (Hop), Fox (Alvin & The Chipmunks: The Squeakquel) and many more. He also teaches Storyboarding at Society of Illustrators LA.

 

 

GABBY ZAPATA: @gabbyzapata

Gabby Zapata is from sunny Los Angeles, California. She majored in Computer Animation at Ringling College of Art & Design. After college, she worked at Digital Domain Studios in Port St. Lucie, Florida as a Visual Development Artist for their Feature Length Animation film, “The Legend of Tembo.” A year and a half later, Gabby moved to LA to work for Disney Mobile for a year. Fast forward to today, she is now working at Disney Digital Network in Glendale, California as Senior Lead Visual Development Artist.

 

 

RICKY DE LOS ANGELES: @rickyanimation

GET LIMITED TICKETS TO HIS PRESENTATION: “COCO LOCO: THE MAKING OF MIGUEL & THE AMAZING ALEBRIJES”

Ricky De Los Angeles is a graduate of CalArts’ Character Animation program, and has since gone to have numerous jobs that involve drawing, because he loves to draw, and never really wanted to do anything else but draw. When traditional animation all but disappeared, Ricky turned to drawing caricatures at parties and events, which then led him to pursue character design and illustration. This led to a few freelance opportunities with Bento Box, Disney TV Animation, got to illustrate a book, and drew some more caricatures, even some on the East Coast with a traveling caricature group. He animated(2d Toon Boom) for video-games at WayForward Technologies for bit, until he landed a spot at Disney CreatIve Group in Glendale, Ca, as a Character Artist, where he draws art that will end up on merchandise. He recently illustrated the Disney/Pixar “COCO” book, “Miguel and the Amazing Alebrijes.” It’s a great time to be an artist, and he hopes to continue doing the drawing thing as long as he can!

 

 

STEPHEN SILVER: @stephensilver7                                                                                                                        

I was born in London, England on August 30, 1972. Aspiring to be a professional artist my whole life and knowing drawing would be my vocation, I got my professional start in 1992 drawing caricatures at Sea World in San Diego. I have designed characters for Disney Television Animation, Sony Feature Animation and Nickelodeon Animation, designing the style of the shows such as “Kim Possible”, “Danny Phantom” Kevin Smith’s “Clerks” the animated series, and many more. I am the author and artist of 7 self-published books on the art of sketching, character design, caricature and life drawing. In addition to working freelance,  and doing lectures, I am the owner of Silver Drawing Academy, an art school, located in Simi Valley, CA.

 

 

KATYA BOWSER: @katyabowserart

Katya Bowser grew up in Florida and went to Ringling College of Art and Design where she majored in Computer Animation. After graduating, she made the move over to Los Angeles. She freelanced for a few years doing storyboards and illustrations for various clients, as well as creating her own comics. Now she is a Storyboard Revisionist at Nickelodeon in Burbank, CA, where she and her family now call home.

 

 

NICK KENNEDY: @paintwithnick

GET LIMITED TICKETS TO HIS WORKSHOPS:

PAINTING LANDSCAPES IN GOUACHE & UNDERSTANDING COLOR, PHOTOSHOP DEMO

Nick Kennedy is a background painter and designer for Television Animation. Currently he is working as a full time visual development artist for Disney Interactive. In his free time he also enjoys taking on freelance work within the animation industry, and improving his skill as an oil painter. From an early age he fell in love with cartoons, and knew that he wanted to be a part of that amazing and unique world. Nick is a lifelong student and is always seeking to find new and exciting ways of creating beautiful and imaginative worlds that can communicate with an audience.

VICTORIA OROLFO: @victoriaorolfoart
Victoria is a freelance background artist based in LA working in animation and other fields of entertainment. She enjoys painting backgrounds because she believes that environments play an important role in telling the story of a character and their world, and she loves using light & color to define mood in a scene. Limitless world-building is a huge part of why Victoria is interested in animation. Past clients include Cartoon Network, Riot Games, and Honda.

 

 

MORGHAN GILL: @teatigercafe

GET LIMITED TICKETS TO HER WORKSHOPS: NETWORKING TIPS & TRICKS and GOUACE WORKSHOP

I am a graduate of the Laguna College of Art and Design’s animation department and I have been working in animation and video games for the past 8 years. I am currently a Senior Artist working at 21st Century FoxNext. I am also an instructor at LCAD and have taught Professional Studies classes and courses.

 

 

PABLO LEON: @artsypabster

GET LIMITED TICKETS TO HIS WORKSHOP: STYLIZED ENVIRONMENT PAINTING

I’m an LA based illustrator/designer currently working in the entertainment animation industry as a Layout designer and Background designer, with experience in creating digital media on educational and social development.

 

 

NILAH MAGRUDER: @nilaffles

Nilah Magruder is a writer and artist living in Los Angeles. She was a storyboard revisionist on DinoTrux a DreamWorks Animation Television and on Tangled: the Series at Disney Television Animation. She also contributed as a writer to LeSean Thomas’s Cannon Busters series, coming to Netflix. Nilah also makes children’s books and comics, most notably the picture book How to Find a Fox, the award-winning graphic novel M.F.K., the September issue of A Year of Marvels (part of Marvel Infinite Comics), and the upcoming graphic novel Creaky Acres.

 

 

STEVEN E. GORDON: @stevenegordon

Steven E Gordon’s professional career began in 1977 when he was hired by Ralph Bakshi Productions to work on the animated feature film Lord of the Rings. He stayed with Ralph through several more films was promoted to Animation Director and Key Animator/Character Designer on the Ralph Bakshi / Frank Frazetta feature Fire and Ice. After that he landed the unusual entry job of Animator at Disney Pictures animating on The Black Cauldron and stayed there for about five years. He returned to Bakshi to direct on the groundbreaking Mighty Mouse series and then he spent 12 years working on and off with Rich Animation on a series of direct-to-videos, doing character design and layout and was Animation Director / Character Designer / Key Animator on The Swan Princess. He also was key animator during this period of Holli Would on Cool World. Then he started as one of the directors and the sole character designer on X-Men: Evolution. Afterwards Dreamworks Animation hired him as a story artist. He then went on to be a director on Marvel/LionGate as well as the character designer on The Ultimate Avengers and its sequel. Next came the TV series, Wolverine and the X-Men for Marvel as well as The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. In his quest to continue to be employable he started illustrating children’s books based on film and comic characters for HarperCollins (and other publishers) as well as illustrating comics such as “The Eternal Savage”™ for ERB, Inc. His most recent work includes storyboards on the live-action version of The Jungle Book directed by Jon Favreau for Disney as well as storyboards on a variety of projects and is in development on several animated series.

 

 

CAROLINE FOLEY: @tuff_waffles

Caroline Foley is a creator with a love for storytelling and experimenting with animation techniques. After graduating from the experimental animation program at CalArts, she got her first studio job working in the art department for Robot Chicken. Caroline worked on a variety of stop-motion projects before transitioning into the 2-d side of the industry, including being a story artist for Bojack Horseman and an animator for all three seasons of Rick and Morty. In 2016 she achieved her dream of combining her knowledge of 2-d animation with miniature sets as backgrounds for Toasty Tales, an original pilot she co-created for Amazon. Today, Caroline is a writer at Cartoon Network and enjoys spending time with her girlfriend and four cats.

 

 

HEATHER ALEXANDER: @drawhound

I’m a Texan transplant who grew up drawing on every scrap of paper I could get my hands on. When the time came to choose a college major, I knew without a doubt that it had to be entertainment art-related. I moved to California in 2009 to begin my artistic journey as an Illustration major at California State Univerity Fullerton, and in 2014, after a summer internship the previous year, I started my career in the animation industry as a layout artist and prop designer. Since that time, I’ve been fortunate enough to work on a variety of fun television and streaming projects at Titmouse, Inc. as a background designer, storyboard revisionist, and most recently, a storyboard artist on Netflix’s “Big Mouth.” Art is my job, hobby, and life, and I couldn’t be happier.

 

 

CHRISTINE KNOPP: @KikiDoodling

Christine Knopp is a full time freelance illustrator who is the founder of KikiDoodle and the creator of Purrmaids. She has worked in games doing concept art for Disney Interactive, and has illustrated several children’s books and book covers including the Eisner nominated RIKKI. Christine has had a deep love for animation since she was a little girl, making up stories and imagining them as potential movies or tv shows. She currently lives in Portland, Oregon with her sphynx cats and Partner and spends a lot of her free time playing board games or traversing to the zoo.

 

 

ANGELA ENTZMINGER: @sketchysoul

Creating engaging stories and sharing how others can thrive in the animation industry are two of Angela Entzminger’s life goals. As the creator and host of The Animated Journey, a podcast featuring interviews with animation professionals, newcomers and veterans in the field of animation learn the ins and outs of the business through personal stories of determination and hard work. Angela’s story began in the publishing industry where she edited career guides and wrote magazine articles for various business and art publications. She made the jump to a career in entertainment by earning an MFA in animation and storyboarding and working on numerous reality television shows. Her collegiate and work experience enabled her to land an internship at Pixar, which in turn helped her become a production assistant at Nickelodeon on The Loud House. Her freelance projects include writing and illustrating comics for upcoming issues of The Loud House graphic novel series published by Papercutz and creating illustrations for NickSports and The Loud House’s Instagram accounts. Her personal and professional experiences have enabled her to share stories with people from around the world. Currently she is working on her own comic book and animated television show pitches in order to inspire the next generation of animation professionals and fans.

 

 

NIC GREGORY: @nicgregoryart

GET LIMITED TICKETS TO HIS WORKSHOP: BACK TO BASICS: THE BUILDING BLOCKS OF PLEIN AIR PAINTING

Nic Gregory is a Background Painter and Color Stylist in the Los Angeles animation industry. Nic’s clients include Disney, Cartoon Network, Thinkwell, Rough Draft Studios, Legendary/Geek and Sundry, and more. Nic is also an accomplished plein air painter teaching painting classes to fellow animation artists and is also teaching at the Walt Disney Family Museum.

 

 

JENNY HOGAN: @JennyHoganArt

Jenny Hogan is a Disneyland Park Decorator, as well as a Freelance Stop Motion Puppet Fabricator. She lives and works in Burbank, Ca, the animation capitol of the world! Jenny has her own home studio and puppet shop called ‘Chalk-Full Studio’, and creates artwork and stop motion puppets for studios near and far. Before Jenny started ‘making magic’ for Disney, and becoming a freelance artist, she worked at professional studios here in sunny So Cal. She has contributed her talents to many TV shows, web series, commercials, and a feature, throughout her career. While working for Shadow Machine, Stoopid Buddy Stoodios, Screen Novelties, and as a freelance artist, Jenny has been able to create puppets for companies like Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim, Disney XD, NBC, Honda, Sony Crackle, MGA, Denny’s, Mattel, Netflix, Too Faced, Mtv, Ziploc, Disney, and PopMedia Brands. Jenny also has a love for Blythe, and creates fun things for dolls in her studio.

 

 

ANDREA GERSTMANN: @andreagerstmann

GET LIMITED TICKETS TO HER WORKSHOPS: DESIGNING FOR 2D ANIMATION

Andrea Gerstmann is an artist and animator with a BFA in painting who has worked in the animation industry for 6 years. Primarily she is known for her background painting on many TV shows including: ‘Apple and Onion’ (Cartoon Network); ‘Pinky Malinky’ (Nickelodeon); ‘Pig Goat Banana Cricket’ (Nickelodeon); and ‘Summer Camp Island’ (Cartoon Network). She is also the Creator and Director of the Nickelodeon animated short ‘Dog and Squirrel’. Andrea enjoys working on all parts of animation. In her personal work, she actively creates many animations where she comes up with the ideas, storyboards, creates the designs and animates it.

 

 

JENNA GRAY: @jengrayart

I grew up drawing my way through an ancient redwoods worth of little sketchbooks, and when I couldn’t find those, I’d draw on anything that had enough grit to hold graphite. Weekly planners, the corners of schoolwork, the corner of books I was supposed to be reading for schoolwork, coffee cups, receipts, napkins, paper towels, unglazed ceramic tiles, what have you. Luckily, I’ve gone digital, and trees no longer tell their tiny tree children terrifying tales of my insatiable drawing appetite. I studied Entertainment Art/Animation at California State University, Fullerton, where I learned the principles of design, illustration, animation, and the art of not sleeping. I graduated Cum Laude with a BFA, and since then I have been working as an independent contractor and freelancer. I love art, animation, illustration, Halloween, horror movies, and coffee. Currently, I’m looking for freelance and creative work in the industry. I’m excited to be exhibiting at the Ground Zero Animation Expo for the first time, and I can’t wait to see you there!

 

 

AMBER AKI: @amber_aki_huang

Amber Aki Huang is a Visual Development Artist and Children’s Book Illustrator. She is currently working with Netflix and Glow in the Dark Studios. She has worked with Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, Pbs Kids, and Samsung.

 

 

CHELSEA KENNA: @chelseakennaart

Chelsea Kenna is a freelance illustrator doing art for picture books, greeting cards, apparel, comics, and a variety of other projects. She wrote and illustrated Dragons vs. Pandas for Stan Lee’s Kids Universe and also has a background in 2D game art and animation for social and mobile games. Chelsea specializes in cute, cartoon animal illustration (especially cats!) and works primarily digitally, with Adobe Photoshop.

 

 

JOANNE GARCIA: @fiercefantasydesigns

Hi, I’m Joanne Garcia and I love being a 2D/3D artist.  I’ve worked in film, tv, games, and product design.  I self-published my own children’s book “Girafficorns” and even designed a float for the 2018 Rose Parade.  I’m excited to be a part of Ground Zero Animation Expo and meeting all of you!

 

 

STEPH LABERIS: @steph_laberis

Steph is a freelance character designer & children’s book illustrator based in California. She has illustrated 6 Little Golden Book titles & has worked with DreamWorks TV, Sesame Workshop, Hasbro & Mass Animation on various animated pilots, features & TV series. Her love for art is rivaled only by her love for animals, which happen to be her favorite subject to draw! When not making art, she volunteers at a wildlife hospital & dotes on her various children of the rodent persuasion.

 

 

SIJIA LUO: @mojosplus

I am a storyboard artist with 10 years’ experience in international media who specializes in cute, quirky animated comedy for television. I was born in China and now live at Los Angeles. Story telling is my true passion, I write, draw comics and animations with my heart!

 

MELANIE EHRLICH: Twitter – @ListenToMelanie

Melanie’s 300+ VO credits include the Disney Junior series P. King Duckling, anime series Ladies vs. Butlers, Adult Swim Games’ Battle Chef Brigade, and Vella Wilde, the lead female character in upcoming RPG YIIK, coming to Nintendo Switch, PS4, PS Vita and Steam in 2018. On screen, Melanie can be seen on Netflix series The OA, Ryan Murphy’s Emmy-nominated series Feud: Bette and Joan, AwesomenessTV’s My Dead Ex, and in Sundance-winning film The Miseducation of Cameron Post, out in theaters in August 2018. Also a director and producer, Melanie recently cast and directed ADR for Media Blasters’ first ever in-house anime dubs, as well as the 2D point-and-click adventure game Norse Noir. She lives happily in LA with her adorable pet bunny, Pia.

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