So recently Alexis_from_Animation contacted me about a blog she's starting up which focuses on the animation industry and it's inhabitants. She was kind enough to interview me for her blog;
Meet and greet: Josh "Hat" Lieberman
There were a few question left out because of spacial issues, so thought I'd post the remainder of the interview here.
~How did your family/friends react when you told them about what you wanted to do?
Animation was something I'd already been doing my whole life so I'm not sure it came as a surprise to anyone around me. My notebooks from high school were always filled with more doodles than notes and I basically just carried that practice on with me to higher education. That is of course until I got bored with paying an absurd amount of money for information I could get for free and decided to leave. Plus I didn't have any friends growing up so it was easy explaining it to them.
~What's the most rewarding part of the job?
What's the worst?
On a personal level, the most rewarding part of the job is that I can hardly call it a "job". I get to come up with jokes all say, draw stupid pictures and then just happened to get paid for it, it hardly feels like work.
However in a more altruistic sense, as I grow as an artist and an individual my perception of what it means to actually be an 'artist' continues to evolve. Currently I like to invest a majority of the importance of what I do into inspiring others.
Sometimes I'll just go out and draw cartoons for people on the street as they walk by. The smiles I get in return are pretty rewarding. I've embraced this idea of doing what I love to encourage others to love.
The worst part... the hours. I don't get to work nearly as long as I'd like to.
~Name your three biggest influences.
Number one would have to be singer/songwriter Jason Mraz. He's had as much if not more of an impact on my work than any visual artist. The way he chooses to live his life and the person he chooses to be is incredibly inspiring. His approach to his craft is extraordinary, insisting that his creations are hardly "his" but "ours". It's a remarkably refreshing outlook in such a self centered industry as "art". He's a good part of the reason I dropped out of school and headed westward to follow my dreams.
Stephen Hillenburg has had a pretty big influence on me as well. Spongebob came out when i was 12 and when I first saw it I think things really clicked for me and I said to myself "That's what I'm going to do." He was also kind enough to personally write me back after I had send him a fan letter with some of my own drawings, which I'm sure at the time were quite crude. That letter still inspires me to this day.
Three would be my mom and my dad, unless that counts as two? Not sure I could pick just one. They're hard work is what allowed me to be able to pursue my passion uninterupted. Without them I wouldn't be here.
~What's your ulitmate goal as an animator/artist?
Direct Space Jam 2 starring Lebron James.
Not much new artowrk I can post yet, but found some even older animation I did. An excerpt from another unfinished project "underground". It was originally supposed to be a feature flash animated film loosely based on some high school friends and me... I think I completed about 4 minutes of animation. I did write the screenplay in its entirety however.