Monday, December 13, 2021

Meet: Tyrus Wong..First Asian Cartoon Animator/ Disney

Talking about a true artist legend you might not heard about, Tyrus Wong was definitely that hands down. 


  Tyrus Wong (October 25, 1910 –-- December 30, 2016) was a Chinese-born American artist who lived to be 106 years of age. As a kid, Wong immigrated to America with his dad, leaving his mom and sister. Wong’s skill and interest in art emerged at an early age and his dad motivated it by having him practice calligraphy on newspaper.Tyrus participated in the Otis Art Institute on a complete scholarship, Wong worked as a janitor at Otis College. He walked for miles to attend classes. He graduated from Otis in 1930 and began working at Disney as a inbetweener. When pre-production started on “ Bambi", Wong painted several small images of a deer in a forest that captured Walt Disney attention. Those sketches became the basis for the style of the movie.

One Important Note :In the years that followed, he endured poverty, discrimination and chronic lack of recognition, not only for his work at Disney but also for his fine art, before finding acclaim in his 90s.

Soon after finishing Bambi, Wong was fired from Disney studios as an effect of the Disney animator 

strike. After leaving Disney, Wong worked at Warner Bros Studios for 26 years as a production illustrator.                                

Later, he developed popular greeting cards for Hallmark Cards. Wong retired in 1968 however developed and made hand made flying kite's for pleasure.

Some of his popular paintings consist of Self Picture (late 1920s), Fire ( 1939 ), Reclining Nude (1940s), East ( 1984) and West ( 1984 ). Wong was included in Mark Wexler'' s 2009 documentary How To Live Forever, where he discussed his day-to-day lifestyle and his view on immortality, and in Pamela Tom'' s 2015 documentary Tyrus. For even more great history on Mr. Wong, go to the side bar of this blog and click on his picture.

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