Interview with Kim Slate, Part 1

This is the first of a three-part interview with artist and animator Kim Slate. The interview in it’s entirety can be found throughout the month of May in the  Featured Artist link to the right.
 

 

Kim Slate’s name may not be a household word but it’s very likely that you’ve seen her work. She is the Lead Facial Animator at Laika, the animation studio that produced the feature films Coraline and ParaNorman and are currently getting set to release The Boxtrolls this Fall.

 

I met Kim quite a few years ago and it’s always a delight to see how her natural creativity and quiet charm come through in the work that she does.

 

 

Oracle © Kim Slate
Oracle © Kim Slate

 

 

How would you describe your work in general?
I try to create funny characters that seem like they are up to something. I want the viewer to imagine them moving around in their own world. They also tend to be an equal mixture of cute and creepy. I like to do small gouache paintings and miniature sculptures.

 

Keith and Dave © Kim Slate

Keith and Dave © Kim Slate

 

 

Any favorite projects that you’ve worked on?

 

The last art show I was part of at the Compound Gallery in Portland, Minutiae Enchantica, with three other artists. Our only parameters were to make our work small and detailed (under 7″ in any direction), so it was right up my alley.

The last art show I was part of at the Compound Gallery in Portland, Minutiae Enchantica, with three other artists. Our only parameters were to make our work small and detailed (under 7″ in any direction), so it was right up my alley.

 

Winston and Alfie © Kim Slate

Winston and Alfie © Kim Slate

 

 

You studied character animation at the California Institute of the Arts and then subsequently found a place at Laika. Is animation a field that you’ve always been drawn to, and 3-dimensional animation in particular?

 

Growing up I was pretty obsessed with Disney films, and decided I wanted to work there at a young age. That changed at CalArts where I had the opportunity to try other types of animation, and I fell in love with stop motion. I have always loved building miniature things, so this medium really appealed to me. I did two stop motion films at CalArts, which led to my job at Laika.

 

 

 

Kim Slate’s work can be found at:

kimslate.blogspot.com