Tom Owens

Incubation 2.0 – Directing Animated Feature Film
Disney DreamWorks

I wanted to be a cartoonist as far back as I can remember… As early as 8 I was drawing comic strip gags and writing letters to guys like Charles Shulz and Jim Davis. When I was 12 I got a copy of Preston Blair’s book ‘Animation’. This book instantly shifted my focus from wanting to draw comic strips to wanting to be an animator… I got my first job right after high school in the summer of 1988. I was hired to be a character layout artist on a show at DIC animation, working for John Kricfalusi, who later created ‘Ren and Stimpy’. The crew on that show were all future animation bigshots, Bruce Timm, Chris Reccardi, Lynne Naylor, Bob Camp, Vince Waller and more… I was lucky enough to get into animation with an amazing group of people who helped to shape my professional career.

I learned a ton on that first summer gig! In my 34 years of working in animation I’ve worked as a designer, layout artist, animator, story artist and director. I’ve been blessed to work beside and learn from the best in the business, and have worked on many memorable series and feature films including ‘Ren and Stimpy’ ‘The Prince of Egypt’ ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ ‘Kung Fu Panda’ and more recently ‘Frozen 2’ and ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’.

I love making cartoons, creating scenes and moments that move people… I love the saying ‘Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life’. I absolutely can say ‘I’ve never worked a day in my life’.