I innocently leave my desk for 2 weeks, only to come back to find the animationworld completely turned upside down. Interesting and most promising times indeed, another proof for that old dutch proverb, that Herman uses sometimes : "You never know, how the cow is going to catch the rabbit."
Anyway, I'm back and after two weeks of teaching and a couple o' days of "wasting time" with my newly downloaded GoogleEarth it's time to do some blogging again.
While I was working on "Tarzan", Andreas Deja was busy with the first test-animation of the Yzma-character, from the upcoming " Kingdom of the Sun" as it was called at that time. Andreas asked me, if I was interested in doing a couple of sketches of Yzma, that would go away from Cruella, just to do something else, a kind of a second opinion.
Cruella , as we all know, has got very prominent pointed shoulders and hipbones, so I started with some sketches, basing Yzma on a simple brushstroke, neglecting the shoulders and hip completly.
Yzma was based of course on Eartha Kitt, who did her voice, but also was reminescent of the singer Yma Sumac, who actually had been at the Disney-Studio before, because one of her songs was considered for Fantasia, as far as I know.
Very strange, haunting music.
Below are some sketches, mostly face-studies. Mind you, that this was a state of the project, where the story was much more epic and Yzma a much more evil character, not as O.T.T. silly and comic as we came to know her.
At the same time I had developed a reputation in the studio, based on the work I had done on the gorillas, that I was able to get character into a lot of look-alike animals. At that time, the script talked about seven llamas, so I , together with animator Ellen Woodbury, ( Hope I spelled her name right ) worked on some llama-sketches.We even went to a countryfair in Pomona to do some life-drawing.
We had found a solution with the different teams, that allowed me to work for "Kingdom" in the morning and in the afternoons I was still working on Tarzan.
And here are some sketches and a bit of animation by Andreas :
As we all know, that approach was eventually cancelled for storyproblems and Andreas moved on to Florida to work on Lilo and Stitch.
All in all for me this little intermezzo lasted no longer than a month or so, back in 1997....