To celebrate Black History Month, the Animation Guild (IATSE Local 839) and the Black Artists Group will be hosting a webinar on February 16 that will explore the contributions of black animation pioneers.
The discussion, titled Draw yourself: being black in animation, will feature the personal journeys of panelists Everett Downing Jr., co-director of the Oscar-winning animated short Hair love; Sidney Clifton, executive producer of the animated television series Black Panther; several Daytime Emmy nominees, Ron Myrick; and Carole Holliday, recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from Black Women Animate.
The webinar will be moderated by Supervising Animation Director Kimson Albert and Deborah Anderson, aka The BlkWmnAnimator.
“The effects of racism don’t stop at the door of the animation studio,” said Steve Kaplan, sales rep for Local 839, “and we need to open up avenues to leadership positions for artists and writers. black people in order to truly see the change in our industry. We hope this event will shine the spotlight on and bring forth the voices of several pioneering black animation artists as they share their experiences.
“After the murder of George Floyd last year, many members of the Animation Guild recognized that we as a union needed to better engage black artists and provide productive opportunities for dialogue,” the union said. in a press release. “We are also committed to creating an environment so that black artists and writers feel invited to participate in and lead union activities. To lead the way, Jupey Krusho, Facilities Manager for the Animation Guild, along with several committed union members, launched the Black Artists Group. “