Ever since I saw the very first CTN convention, way back where it all started, with a small group of animation die hard’s, that would not let the spark go out, I have been wanting to write about Tina and her amazing effort to build a community to help the people in the industry and the newbies and wannabes to connect and mingle to build a better future.
Over the years I asked her a few times, but she was so humble and shy and a hated even have her picture taken, so it remained one of those “one day” to do things and the years passed. So when I saw this post on her FaceBook and the note, my interview starts about min 41 isch, I had to check it out. I am so glad I did, this interview is incredible. There are so many things I did not know about her and the whole thing is done so candidly, like friends reminiscing. I am glad I never got to it myself, because I would have missed out on a lot of really good stuff and I guess as always, there is a right time and place for everything.
It is magnificent how she brought the talent together and helped build an amazing networking program, with one on ones, studio reviews, classes, art shows, screenings and you name it its there. She has revolutionized the way people connect and share and allowed a whole new way of passing the knowledge to grow. Now we have this beautiful place and events, where dreams can take shape and come true, due to one persons tenacity to refuse to let it fade away.
I know there will be some that will mutter and grumble and say that it was not just her, that it was also build on others pitching in and giving it a lot, but really, without her initiative to get us all of our desk chairs and into one big space together, this would still all be a pipe dream. Yes, there is ComicCon and other Animation and Illustration expos out there, but none of them really had what CTN became, especially in the early years. Sure there were animation festivals like Annecy and similar all over the globe, where you could catch one or the other animation great, if you were lucky. But that meant traveling inter state and/or international and who can afford that as a student? Or as a professional, if you are constantly working and in crunch time. Or whatever it was you were doing, there was nothing anywhere close in LA, that gave you a real insight to how it all works, unless you got an internship or job, and those were hard to come by.
Now there are lots of events and gatherings, some better than others, some large some small, but they are there, because Tina has done it first, and done it well. She has filled a niche need and everyone came to see. She has expanded and worked to make it bigger and better every year, to accommodate demand, and yes, sometimes things got out of whack and there were problems and mistakes. But really? Where is it there is none? There are people who dive in and create and people who will be critics after the deed is done and pick it apart. But I didn’t see them sticking their neck out, till she had done it and paved the way…
Everyone has gained from her efforts, in one way or another, some got jobs, or friends or collaborations and pooled ideas and gathered experience. Others build groups and studios and schools and businesses on the foundations that Tina provided. The animation world has united and expanded under her mantle in ways it never had before. There are opportunities now that were not there and I think we all owe this great lady a heap of thanks for making it all possible.
So from the bottom of my heart Tina, Thank You!
The link to the interview is right at the top and here below, in case you missed it, and you can skip to min 41 if you do not want to listen to the whole program. Thank you to Skull Rock Podcast and Dave Bossert and Aljon Go for the interview.