Growing up in Cape Town as the son of a potter and an artist, Richard Bolland was 16 years old when he decided that he wanted to be an animator. Ten years later, that’s precisely what he is.
Richard’s first inspiration to animate was Mike Judge, Creator of Beavis and Butthead. In high school he would often spend his time creating cartoons of Gary Larson comics and animations of creatures he’d imagined. It was never his intention to study advertising or brand communications but when the time came, Richard chose to study at Vega because it was the only college that offered an animation module in Flash. “Looking back, I’m very grateful to Vega for teaching me the importance of brands and marketing,” he says.
After completing his studies in 2008, Richard started off as a compositing intern at BlackGinger before working at Orijin New Media as a junior motion graphics artist and compositor. In 2010 together with his friend Paul Speirs, Richard co-founded a post production company called New Creation Collective where they create commercials alongside agencies, edit feature films and direct a few commercials themselves. In May this year, Richard became the Creative Director of Common Ground Church where he focuses on communications and creates animations and videos.
“I love 2D, pseudo 3D, centralized animation. Basically I like colourful flat imagery, with shadows to give the illusion of depth.” Regarding his process, Richard says, “I usually start with pencil and paper, and then move into Illustrator or Photoshop. I then export the layers into After Effects wher I animate everything keyframe by keyframe. Then, I render into Premier where I do some editing and sound effects.”
Describing himself as a “clumsy 26 year old dude“, Richard is a massive Arsenal fan who won’t say no to a good craft beer every now and then. He loves his church community and believing in a creative God, and with a deep passion for social justice Richard works closely with the homeless community of Wynberg. He also has a job in the pipeline for TED, New York and some other international clients, and is looking forward to expanding his horizons in this way.
“I really am thankful to the internet and Cape Town’s creative scene for inspiring me to create things each day.” Richard also lists Motif, Buck, Giant Ant, Greyscale Gorilla, Andrew Kramer, Tendril, Plenty, Crooked Line, Psyop, Animade, Eliot Rausch and Salomon as big influences in his creativity, saying “If I could be anything close to these guys I would be very content.”
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