New Disney Museum Program Opens Doors to Animation Skills and Careers


Photo by Michelle Tiburcio

Junior Rose Maafu working on an Animation Project in the Disney Animation program.

The Walt Disney Family Museum/Eastside Animation Certification Program has finally kicked off and

students are eager and ready to take on Eastside’s newest art opportunity. Participants have already started experimenting with Animation and Art from making short clips of a ball bouncing to drawing self-portraits.

“When I saw this I thought that it would further my goal of getting a career in animation,”  said sophomore Angel Aguilar who is participating in the program.  “One thing that we have been assigned to draw was to chose three objects, and how they would react if they were either thrown, bounced, or rolled. But the catch is it can’t be a sphere, also it can’t be the same object for all three.”

A few weeks before the beginning of school, Principal Chris Bischof sent out an exciting email to alert students to this new opportunity. Chris got in contact with the executive director of Walt Disney Family Museum. They began discussing ideas for programs that would be possible for Eastsiders. The Walt Disney Family Museum had done a few animation programs for other schools outside of California, and Chris thought it would be a great new outlet for students to explore their interests and learn about new careers.

“This would be a great offering for our students,” Chris said.

Sophomore Jessica Chavez Ortiz works on art project during the animation program. (Photo by Michelle Tiburcio)

The program requires a considerable time commitment, as meetings are held from 3:30 – 5:30 every Tuesday and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Saturday. This didn’t stop students from signing up, though! Students also have hand-drawn assignments after every class.

Even though the program just started on Sept. 11, the 13 class members have already learned about the 12 principles of animation, stop-motion, and have even created their own basic animations of a ball bouncing up and down. Students use iStopMotion and cameras to take pictures of their cuts to produce digital media.

“I wanted to learn more about animation and I knew that I wasn’t really good at it, so I just wanted to develop the skills that would help me in the future,” said senior Corey Walker.

As the months go on, participants will continue to build up their animation portfolios. Students look forward to animating their own characters and telling stories through animation.  By the end of the program students will have even made their own small animated movie.

After completing the program, the participants will receive an animation certification. Professional animators have this certification as proof that they have acquired the basic level of skills needed to work in animation.