Imagine John James Audubon wandering past the edge of Toon Town into the adjoining forest. These are the creatures he might have captured on canvas. Perhaps not such large canvases, but the scale seems to suit them. We are used to cartoon animals rendered in flat colors in their wacky 7 minute episodes of slapstick hilarity. Here is a rare glimpse of these selfsame cartoon animals in all their furred, feathery, scaly detail… much larger than life.
The imagineer of these cartoon wildlife portraits, John Ryan, is an animator who owns the Atlanta animation studio, DAGNABIT! (www.dagnabit.tv.), specializing in the fine art of hand-drawn traditional animation (they use computers for some of the tedious bits like painting and camerawork). In keeping with time-honored craftsmanship, everything starts out as a hand-made drawing on paper. In his spare time he paints in oils and watercolor. His art teacher mother got him started in oils when he was 12 years old. John was one of the original 9 Painter Masters working in Corel Painter software to create highly illustrated, painterly animations for his clients. He studied at Rhode Island School of Design and took his Masters at Washington University St. Louis. He has been an animator for the past 37 years.
DAGNABIT!’s clients have included ad agencies: McCann Erickson, Young & Rubicam, Ames, Scullin, O’Haire, J. Walter Thompson, BBDO, and Austin Kelly, along with Hallmark Entertainment, the Discovery Channel, Disney’s Yellow Shoes Creative Group and Cartoon Network. Animation Magazine's Anicomm awards recognized John’s animation talents four times for top animated commercial since 1995. John has earned numerous television awards: BDA golds, Tellys, Addys, Commercial Emmys and Monitor awards. John’s film “Glimmer” based on Richie Haven’s music “Song of the Wandering Angus” and the sculpture of his artist wife, Joyce Ryan, received great acclaim on the independent film festival circuit yielding awards from Worldfest/Flagstaff (Gold), Hopes and Dreams Festival (Best Animation), ASIFA East (Best Design for Animation), Savannah International Film Festival (Best Animation). In 1996, his design for the mascot of the Atlanta Olympic Games, “Izzy”, was viewed by an international audience. But that’ll be our little secret.