Onyinye Ubah

My childhood years were characterised by watching lots of cartoons and reading comics by Stan Lee and other writers. It was at that early stage of life that my love for cartoons and animations started building up. I cannot categorically state that I set out to go into the world of animation though I spent most of my free drawing and painting. Funnily, I think I was also inclined towards the art of singing and dancing. So, looking back, those little subtle steps I took as a hobby were unknowingly the road map for my journey into visual development and character design.

In the beginning, my family was not in total support of my career path. It was not logical that simple drawing and animation could ever be a tangible source of income for one’s living. There were days my drawings were torn and pencils seized just to discourage me from drawing. Like people always say, the heart knows where it belongs. Surprisingly, all those actions never deterred me from pursuing my dreams. Rather, it became a vehicle for me to be more resilient.

After my secondary school education, I sought admission into higher institutions to study arts . The options they had was basic arts and paintings and not  animation that I always dreamt of. The only option staring at me was to sign up for an online course. There, I would be educated in the craft of animation. I was also attached to mentors who are professionals in the industry.

I grew up from an era where most of the animation we saw was Caucasian in form. From there, my interest in making animations of good qualities and appeal irrespective of the race they represent grew thicker in me. I found out that animation is animation anywhere in the world. What matters is the quality.

My early years in the field of animation was not rosy for me, in terms of income. I knew from the onset that was needed to be done was to build my skill to a professional level. In my early years, a lot of people did not take me seriously. They felt animation was for children and could not see why an adult would pick that career path. Surprisingly, most professionals in animation are even older men and women.

In spite of all these, there was never a time I felt like giving up. I was quite confident my effort was going to pay off some day.

The joy that sky-rocketed me into fame was Monster high: Electrified in 2017 and many more projects that followed suit including Jungle Beats, the Movie.

In all, good animation comes from hard work, persistence and continuously making deliberate efforts to build a rich portfolio that speak for you.

In years to come, I look forward to sharing my knowledge to the younger generation by starting up a school where the fear of arts would be totally eliminated.

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