Artist - Kathy Macdonald

I grew up in Toronto Ontario and always loved animation and drawing.  I actually chose my high school (Northern) because of its wide ranging art programs and classes.  I was exceptionally lucky as they also had life drawing classes from grade 10 onwards.  This was a huge asset when it came to applying to Sheridan College.  Unlike, I think, a lot of high school students I had a pretty strong grasp of the basics of drawing and was able to skip the fundamental year.  After I graduated, I started working as a Stop motion Animator on shows like Jojo's Circus (Disney) and Rick and Steve (Logo) at Cuppa Coffee Animation.  I really fell in love with Stop motion and worked in it for the following six or so years.  I've also worked in Flash, Toon Boom and Maya.

Kathy Macdonald - On the set of the Christmas special "A Miser Brothers Christmas"

What part of Canada are you from Kathy?

I was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario

What inspired you to create animation?

I was always a huge fan of Disney Movies and it was a pretty natural progression from there.

How would you describe your artistic style?

I guess my style, when it comes to drawing anyway, is pretty cartoon-y.  I was always a huge fan of those early Batman cartoons.  They were grittier than most shots but still with simple stylistic lines. With animation I've always loved the snappier, zippy stuff.

What role do you play in the creation of animation?

I've mainly worked as a Animator, but I've also been an Animation Director.

Still frame from the climax of "Stuck"

Still From "Stuck"

What is one project that you are proud to have been involved in?

I have to say the best project I worked on in terms of experience was on a feature film by Henry Selick, out in San Francisco.  It was one of the greatest learning experiences of my career and I met and worked with some many incredibly talented people.  It was also probably one of the most bitter sweet experiences of my career as well, Disney canceled and closed the studio in 2012.

What projects are you working on now?

I'm not currently working on any projects in the industry, but I've been focusing heavily on drawing again.  I've got a short film that I'm in the process of writing.  The last project I worked on was a great little kids show called Dino Paws for the BBC.

An example of the type of drawing Kathy has been doing recently

Who is one of your favourite Canadian animators?

I'd have to say Payton Curtis is a pretty exceptional Stop Motion Animator working today.

Payton Curtis, Animation reel/2013 from Payton Curtis on Vimeo.

What is one of your favourite animation books? 

It's not animation related but the graphic novel 'Locke and Key' is just amazing!

Amazon Link - Locke and Key: Vol. 1 Welcome to Lovecraft

Who is an up-and-coming or relatively unknown Canadian animator that everyone should check out?

I got to work with Kevin Parry out in San Francisco.  He is an amazing Animator who's also an exceptional film maker worth watching.

The Arctic Circle from Kevin Parry on Vimeo.

Are you involved with any animation organizations in Canada?


What are some of your animation milestones?

I was incredibly lucky to get to meet Brad Bird when he toured the studio in San Francisco.  He actually watched and complimented some of my animation.  It was pretty incredible.

Have your films won any animation awards/accolades?

My short film "Stuck" received the audience choice awards in 2012 at the Toronto Animation Arts Festival International (TAAFI)

Stuck from K. MacDonald on Vimeo.

A still from "Stuck" before post production is applied.  Her mouth was hand drawn frame by frame in post.