Natalie Nourigat’s comics have been around for a while, graceful, clean mostly autobiographical comics, plus the art for various projects from Oni and Lerner. She currently works as a storyboard artist at Disney though, and she’s just published a 70 page webcomic called ‘I Moved to LA to Get a Job in Animation’. It’ll cost you $10 on Gumroad and its worth every penny. She explains:
I moved to LA in 2015 to storyboard for animation studios. I get a lot of questions from artists who are interested in making similar career moves themselves. I wanted to make a comic about my experience, half for me and half for anyone looking for information about LA / storyboarding for animation. It took a LOT of my weekends over the past year, but the final, 70-page comic is now ready to share with you!!
While there is a lot of practical information about getting into animation – and this page has an incredible list of resources, including studios – this is really a romcomic, although the rom is really with a place and time. After moving from her native rainy Portland, Nourigat is worried about missing nature and too much smog and so on. She doesn’t shy away from the sad – the first year in LA, like everyone’s first year moving anywhere, is a lonely time of Netflix and wondering why everyone else is having more fun. Hanging out in LA isn’t easy because everyone likes to cocoon instead of driving through hell traffic. She sends out 28 applications in a year. But eventually things fall into place.
If you thought the retro musical La-La Land was an ode to Los Angeles, Nourigat’s candy–colored, in–the-moment recollections are a sonnet. Reading this comic made me want to move back! It’s like seeing a charming little animated featurette that’s also how to get a good paying job. It’s impossible not to like her in these pages, and the art, as you can see, is as clean and spot-on as the storyboards she works on for a living.
If you’re interested in moving to LA to work in animation (and who in comics isn’t?) or just want to read a sweet autobio comic, this is recommended.
I Moved to LA to Get a Job in Animation
$10 on Gumroad
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.