JULIA POTT is a British Illustrator / Animator based in Los Angeles. She completed her MA in Animation at the Royal College of Art and her short films screening at film festivals including Sundance and SXSW. She was named one of the 25 New Faces of Film by Filmmaker Magazine and an Indie Film Breakout by Indiewire. She is an ADC Young Gun and a YCN Professional Award Winner. Her clients include Bat for Lashes, Hermes, J. Crew, Madewell, Oreo, Rachel Antonoff and Toyota. She is currently developing a short with Cartoon Network.

30 thoughts on “SEPT 16- JULIA POTT

  1. Evan Tedlock says:

    I have been following Julia Pott’s work for a short while now, so the lecture was really a treat to me. I love her strange anthropomorphized characters with the semi-rough hand drawn aesthetic. Her work is personal and intimate and at the same time strange and almost alien. I feel connected and hooked at the oddest moments during her films. These strings of quotes from books, one line introspective thoughts, strong nostalgic references and glimpses into the human condition weave a complex yet simple tapestry of metaphor and experiences.

    Julia kept coming back to this concept, which we’ve seen from several of our presenters so far, of continuing to do your own work and create the things you want to make, which will lead to jobs and commissions. It was also nice to hear about her inspiration and ideation processes. One of the reasons why her films are so rich and interesting is because she’s pulling concepts from an array of different media, books, illustrations, television, and live action film. I am excited to see her new show for Cartoon Network.


  2. David Nessl says:

    Julia’s work seems so familiar to me, like I’ve been seeing it everywhere, for a long time. It’s as if she’s inspired the entire world to steal her illustrative style. I’m fascinated by the way Julia is able to emulate movement and the simplicity of her hand drawn aesthetic allows us to focus on the narrative behind her work. It also highlights the surrealism and the symbols she places into her animations and designs. I personally love the imperfections in her characters, or the way specific things are represented; ocean waves as pink lines, the anthropomorphic characters mixing with humans and actual animals.
    I also really enjoyed Julia’s personality and the way she represented her work. Knowing what inspires Julia and the strong emphasis she places on personal interests and life experiences is refreshing and motivating. It was great being able to relate to Julia as an artist and a student, knowing that she was once in our shoes. Julia’s work stands out with her distinctive style and her animations seems to encompass the heart of a child–curious and excited by a supernatural sense our world and its stories.


  3. Shang Song says:

    Cute cute cute!
    Julia’s style is very cute.
    I always feel (but not sure), in the YouTube or VIMEO to watch Julia’s commercial projects before.
    You know, my style has not been “cute”, but I was impressed by her style.
    I have a lot of friends, artist, illustrator, they have a very unique and lovely style But it’s hard for them to find the good job in China. Because the business environment is not suited to their style.
    I think this is related to the development of the business environment, China also need more time, will allow Julia such artists to participate in the commercial projects.


  4. Mayra Flores says:

    Julia Pott had me at JTT. I absolutely loved her film “My First Crush.” Her honesty and humor were refreshing and much needed. Her presentation was so much fun and I wish I could make her my best friend. I was really impressed with her ability to work commercially but her work remains very much her own. The fact that she allows her feelings and experiences influence her animation and illustrations are what elevate her weirdly adorable characters to
    a whole new level. Her films are wonderful for that very reason–they really hit you on an emotional level because those feeling and experiences are essentially universal. Everyone has had a first crush. Everyone has left childhood behind. The fact that she can’t animate on the computer but still manages to get her work out there is incredible. It attests to passion and vision over technical skill. I hope that “Lobster Gilmore Girls” becomes a real thing someday and I can’t wait to see “Summer Camp.” Also, who knew an irrational fear of quicksand plagued the minds of so many children in the 90s–I know I definitely had it.


  5. Erik Dumas says:

    I found Julia’s work to be incredibly inspiring. It goes to show that there are a million different ways to tell a story, and a million different sources of inspiration you can utilize. I also liked hearing, once again, that work will often come to you after you do something creative for yourself. It makes sense to me. I think our best work tends to come from doing something that truly inspires us on a personal level. If you pour your soul into a project, people will notice and appreciate it.


  6. Kun Xia says:

    Julia Pott is an amazing animator and illustrator, I always love her work, and her story telling always very emotional and touching. Her films and drawings often present human experiences and existential questionings embodied and voiced by animal characters. There’s something bitter, sweet and unsettling in seeing cute animals voicing concerns associated with feelings of love, loneliness, passage to adulthood, struggling to find their place into the world.
    The common denominator in her work is an intense yearning, an often funny and sometimes painful search for something intimate and real. Whether the subject is love or loss. In some of her works contain the mix of 2D elements and occasional live action footage, I think the visual style is very unique. I also like the certain darkness at the Julia Pott’s work which leaves the viewer wondering about what sort of character could dream it up.


  7. Yu Yu says:

    Julia Pott found the inspiration from all kinds of places, but the most important spot is from herself. A crush, home sick, the lost of childhood, every tiny thing happened in life can become her story. A good story teller is unnecessarily to make an extremely dramatic plot, but begin a story from a small event, and expand it with their own view. I love the atmosphere and the character design in her film. Even the story itself is sad, the film will still remain a bit of warm in the end.

    It’s a fun idea to make all the character animals. It works especially well in her film “I don’t want to marry you”. The woman was illustrated as a bear, and the man was still a man. Despite the man worn a bear hat to pretend he is also a bear, we still know that they are not perfect to each other immediately. I was surprised that Julia Pott said that she doesn’t love animals, because there are so many animals in her works. Well, it seems like the created world are still different from the reality!


  8. Amir Arzanian says:

    I found Julias presentation very inspiring. Her artistic vision was excellent. I liked the way she looked at issues. For example her documentary animations were about very common problems but she has used elements and characters in such innovate methods that it could impress the audience. Her characters were unique and I think drawing and personalties deeply connected to each other. Although the character seemed cold and emotionless they were highly effective and could easily create sympathy.
    She has no fear of using any animation exaggeration and deformation in her work. She freely moved character through the scenes with novel mise en scene. Her decoupage was was also well polished and original.
    I liked almost all of her film. “My First Crush” was funny, full of great graphic works. “Howard” although the narrative was simple directing and the visual treatment was so original that make the audience to follow the story easily and keep the film fresh. “Belly” had a psychological approach to childhood and I think its advantage to the other works of her was the novel story. Beside of that using the good character development cause the film to be emotionally successful. “Event” really impressed me because it transcending the limits of the words and use animation in its best way to visualize sense of a poem. Compositing animation with live action in this film was successful.
    I am happy that she has a opportunity now to show her talent TV shows and I wish TV production pressure does not affect the quality of her work.


  9. Chung-Hsuan, Fan Chiang says:

    I think the presentation of Julia really attracted all the audience, with lovely stories and awesome works she has done. I like the way that she keeps her own style with different projects, and it is amazing her illustration worked perfectly in animation. Illustrations that I have done are really different from the characters I create on purpose for animation, and therefore it loses the very first attempt of creation in some way. The semi-narrative style she creates her animation inspired me a lot, with interviews of others talking about their own experience, it is so natural but deep in emotion.
    I really hope that I can make my living by working on personal projects like the way she does, which reminds me the importance of being myself and create lots of work with unified style.


  10. Junyi Xiao says:

    I like Julia’s short films and her presentation is also wonderful. It’s quite interesting to watch those films she made in different time period. Even though she keeps her own style for different projects, I can still find that she was trying to explore new ways like MG to do the commercials. It makes me think about an old problem which troubled me for a long time: whether we should keep our own style or try to explore different possibilities of animation. Cause if you can do your own stuff really good, people who like your style will come to you; however, at the same time, you loss more potential customers who want 3D, MG or something else. Focus on your stye and try your best to learn different skills may be the thing you should to if you want to be an artist nowadays.


  11. Franklin Okike says:

    REALLY? No one is going to mention Christine Panushka’s film choice “The Hill Farm”? Diam!! I must say Mark Baker is a brilliant animator and story teller! His “Jolly Roger” is funny as well.

    Julia gave an outstanding presentation!! I personally found her personality down to earth and refreshing.

    I found her animation style overly organic but yet appealing!! Her ability to push the volumes of her characters by exaggerating or morphing them into each other was breath-taking.

    “My First Crush” is probably my favourite because it’s a relatable topic. It successfully conveys humour & Emotions and the choice of illustrating the animals as bipeds’ is brilliant.
    “Belly” for me was a touching film, there’s nothing more painful that when you love someone secretly but get denied when called out on it.

    Watching the final (flash) Oreo commercial was a let-down compared to Julia’s organic illustrations and meticulous animation skills.

    In all, Julia’s presentation was worth it but her personality is worth more.


  12. Joseph Etemadi says:

    I really enjoyed Julia Pott’s presentation. I’m always thankful to hear from artists who love to share their stories openly. I think it was really helpful that we got to hear and watch the path Julia took through her artwork, and how she got to where she is.

    Ms. Pott is an extremely talented artist and it was refreshing to see someone pursuing both forms of commercial and personal art, and the blending of the two. I think what I got most out of her presentation was the importance of maintaining a level of professionalism in the arts industry. As a young artist, she knows how to successfully market herself, and how through different commercial work managed to reach an even broader audience.

    I liked how the references for her animations were personal moments from her life. The character designs in all of her artwork are interesting, and I can see the appeal to many different kinds of people. It was an informative presentation and thanks to all parties involved.


  13. Jing Huang says:

    Julia Pott has talent in story telling with her unique art style. And she gave us a very relaxing and interesting presentation, there were so many her own story in her presentation make me feel cordial.

    I was touched by her first work “the first crush”, the unadorned dialogue and simple but unique art style impressed me deeply. I could find the real emotion which remind me of teenage of myself in this video. The video full of sweet and light bitter of first love that knocked my heart gently. That’s why I think that she has amazing talent in story telling.

    Also the art style of Julia Pott has a lot to talk about. I love drawing cute things, so in my daily illustration work I draw so many warm, sweet and cute things, even draw some weird things in cute style. But I was confused that this style looks like not exactly commercial, and the commercial company will not give me a job. Now Julia use her own experience told me that I can keep my own style and I can find the commercial way suits me. Thanks for your presentation!


  14. Yijie Li says:

    Thanks Julia Pott for showing us her inspiring works. Obviously, she is a very personalized illustrator, animator as well as a storyteller. Through her experience through university period, a independent animator and become a full time artist in Hornet, Julia Pott is a typical artist successfully going into commercial career. Her character design and other illustration are striking logo of her, to say nothing about her unique animation.

    Inanimate monologue is a palpable feature of Julia Pott’s animation, almost all the main characters in her film are animalized which I think they are combined with Julia Pott’s personal memories or experiences. However, these flat rhythm without any emotional fluctuation are matched up with, to some extent, very emotional event in the story. Love, separation, abandonment, ignorance and other strong attitudes feels like screaming out beneath our visions. Maybe her style is way away from the traditional storytelling but I wish I can get more enlightened discussion with her.


  15. Sequoyah Madison says:

    By noting the methods of Julia Pott and observing the paths that lead to her success, I was able to extract extremely helpful information. Julia has shown that marching to the beat of your own drum really pays off. Though she was a bit uneasy about her style when her career first began, she reminds everyone not to worry about their style, just do what you want. From the beginning Julia was able to pinpoint the topics that appealed to her most (whether it be romance or the lack there of) and use not only her personal experience to direct her animations, but also the experience of others to present the works topic in a well-rounded manner. Not only can we learn from Julia’s ability to decisively choose her subject matter, but as students we have also learned that by putting ourselves out there and offering to do what we enjoy for free, we gain free publicity. After all, no publicity is bad publicity. Julia finds inspiration in quotes and in the folder on her laptop which conveniently holds all the cool things she has come across on the internet. Steal from things you like – she advises– by the time you are done with them the source will be unrecognizable.

    The Pitching Process
    1. You’ll need to talk about what inspired you to make it
    2. Talk about your world – the world you are creating for this show/feature
    3. Talk about your characters
    4. Explain where the series can go, they want to make sure it can last
    5. If you pass the first stage: 3 months later pitch again with full boards
    6. If you pass: Negotiate deal


  16. HyeonJeong Cho says:

    I was so excited when I saw her name on the list because I watched her films from My First Crush to The Event, and was influenced by Howard when I worked on my undergraduate thesis animated film – The Box, which is also taking about breaking up with someone you loved.
    On account of my work, mainly talking about the relationships, and happy or miserable feelings from the relationship, I always think my subject is too obvious or boring. However, thank to Julia’s sincere presentation, openly sharing her personal story, I’ve got a conviction that the power of personal (refined) story. The topic may too obvious, but this is the common experience that most of people go through in a life therefore I also can bring empathy from many audience. Via her artworks, I realised that the main key is the way to deliver it not the theme itself.
    Speaking of manner of convey the story- It was such a consolation that listening her artistic steps, made me feel that each style has unique value, and if you keep going on and develop it, it would be shine somewhere somehow.
    Thank you so much to share your art and story, it was a huge inspiration for me.


  17. Jinzhidu says:

    Julia is such an excellent and beautiful young artist. Her style is unique and outstanding. And I am also in interesting in her different work in her different time. Now there is a old question, how to balance the commercial project and independent style. Sometime they are totally opposite, sometime they are live with each other. I think Julia already gave us the best answer with her strong works. Behind these unique fantasy works I can clearly saw Julia’s effort that she tries hard to find different ways to blend her strong style with commercial requirement.

    I am looking forward to see her upcoming works, and hope this artist becomes more and more successful.


  18. Yingzong says:

    I really enjoyed Julia’s works. The style of her animation is unique and impressive., even though the lines are rough and randomly. This kind of style has been so popular now, I think Julia has inspired so many artists in the world and effect their works. I always glad to see the animation with such an amazing and personal style, I wish I could be hired to do animation in my own style in future, just like Julia.
    I like her short films because her skill of storytelling is fantastic ,using a very calm way to present a really sad story, has been always touching my soul. And also, her films are all based on her life, her family and her friends, this is a smart way to make story deep and touching.


  19. Tuo Kan says:

    Looking at Julia Pott’s animations, her personal life, and some stories of her, I can feel a really strong connection with her.

    The first one film she showed us catch my attention immediately. It’s called The First Crush. I like the way she delivered the dialogues with the animal. Liike when the dog says he can actually smell Jackie the girl he loves. That’s very clever and sensitive. And I like the idea that drawing the stories with her love stories, and get the inspirations from the 1990s romantic movies. Also 80s-90s romance movies are also my favorite! Like When Harry Met Sally, that’s one of my favorites.

    That remind me about why I love The Mindy Projects. The way of living life with wonderful wishes and romantic thoughts, recording every little idea and feeling from daily life. I do emotionally understand and admit with her arts.


  20. Joe Stucky says:

    Julia Pots gave a nice presentation of her work and was willing to talk through how her career path has moved forward. Her illustration style is very cute. I pulled an idea from her talk it goes something like this: Keep working on paid work so that you can keep inspiring yourself to keep making art. I don’t remember her exact words but this statement can be very true. I do believe we must find a balance between idea making (down time) and Producing (on time). However the idea that being immersed in making things often will allow the mind and body to have the tools to create new connections and possibilities where perhaps there were non before.

    Idealism struggles with the statement, “Steal from whatever you like, because by the time you have made something from it… the thing you stole will be changed”. Julia mentioned a few times that she hasn’t been sued yet. Just because you don’t get caught stealing doesn’t justify the act. My thought is inspiration can come in many ways this is true. The other idea is, if you directly rip something from another artist, perhaps one could at least acknowledge the source. You may not be able to hold big corporations like Disney to this ideology but as individuals it is possible. I admit corporations should have manners as well and I do not condone that they don’t.

    I do appreciate Julia’s perspective on the subject of where her ideas come from and know that the issues with ownership are very old. Where does an idea come from and along it’s way to fruition can one actually claim ownership of it? Also where did the idea of ownership come from?


  21. Ruchia Masuko says:

    It was interesting that she mentioned about Haruki Murakami and David Lynch in her presentation. My psychology professor had also indicated that those two authors has similar senses that similar in that way of schizophrenia. I guess she also feels them as her personal sense.

    I really liked Bat for Lushes and First Crush. She used the documentary style, and it made the animation more believable for viewers even though she used character as animals. Because she is young, her senses very modernistic and she express the emotions and senses of young age as life size. Also, I suppose that her artworks are based on her personal experiences especially her relationships between her love and families, which is amazing. I believe it is not the all the people have the experiences of love relationships in their lives. Especially in Japan, those people who are in animation field likely to refuse to see the real world around them but focus on their artworks. But as Hayao Miyazaki said, animators should see the world, watch people, and meet people in person and build relationships with others.


  22. Jinyue Wan says:

    I really like Julia Pott’s work, It’s cute and adorable. But it’s not just cute, there are some thing deep and serious in her animation.

    When the first time I saw her work, I thought it just something simple and sweet. However, after I watched all her stuff in this seminar, I was stunned by her work. Especially the one which is talking about the story between the brothers, it’s a little bit creepy but attractive in same time. It described the complicate relationship of the character, and it also remind me how I thinking when I was a child.The other work of her is also great, the animation which pictured the love relationship of a young couple impressed me a lot. I believe it can remind many viewer’s own experience of love.

    Compare to other speaker, Julia is young and creative, she doesn’t have many technique things, but she gave me many inspirations and the feeling of art.


  23. Julia Pott’s lecture is fantastic!! With her brief and powerful introduction, I can truly understand another way like collecting book quotes, keeping a diary or watching romantic comedies to get inspiration from and make animation. Combination of something random and particular, her works she described, is actually the long-process efforts and accumulations from quotidian lives and the way how she sees people. Also, she has strong and sensitive insight toward the character’s settings because of dating back to her childhood to explore own personal experiences and memories which can give a boost to develop the unique context of her works.

    One of my favorite films is Belly. The design of human-like animals and plots form clear contrast of them which can let audiences ruminate over and over again.
    Conversation and interaction between the roles may make you laugh and cry at the same time. Something funny but a little bit sad can always catch my mind for its ambiguity.


  24. Katie Smith says:

    Julia’s presentation was excellent! I really enjoyed seeing her progress from her shorts in University to her present work. She was very relatable and funny, and her personality really shows in her pieces – quirky, fun, and interesting. I also really liked how she emphasized to keep doing your own work, to experiment and have fun, and to explore. It was interesting to hear how she got on board with different projects, and that a big part of it was the internet – that she kept working hard and putting herself out there. I think that’s a big fear that people have sometimes regarding their artwork, and it was helpful to see how Julia never stopped working and creating these interesting pieces, and because of that her success kept (and keeps on) growing. I think it was also refreshing to see how success can also happen in different forms, and not just with animation. For instance, how she did the Hermes displays and the designs Rachel Antonoff. I’m really looking forward to following her work and I hope that her ‘Camp’ cartoon works out for Cartoon Network! From what we’ve seen of Julia’s work, it will surely be a different style and a very smart and beautiful cartoon.


  25. Megan Simon says:

    Julia Pott, what an inspiration. She encompasses the idea of the illustrator as an artist’s hand with a distinct mark. Her work has it’s own style to it that is very much her own. What I found most fresh about her lecture was her discussion on developing her own aesthetic through school and experiences with work or clients. I relate somewhat to this, as having some history with freelance. It was great to hear how opportunities working with bands, or companies both helped her hone her craft and also determine what her craft isn’t (such as oreo).

    What I found compelling about Julia Pott was her animations. Her approach to documentary animation was fantastic. While staring at the most unreal things like a bird describing their first crush (a polar bear) it was easy to be emotionally involved as a viewer because we’re already being empathetic through anthropomorphism. Of course the topic itself is universal. I think really that describes how Pott’s work is so appealing, it has a simplified universal quality to it. A naïveté aspect in the way she approaches the drawing that makes it relatable to the onlooker, while also adding emotion with the uneven line. It’s easy to relate yourself to something the less detail it has, this is a philosophy utilized in many artists be they sculptors or writers and so on and so forth. This sort of innocent aesthetic is highly desired. I know from my experience in painting that many painters study at lengths to obtain something similar (kind of a long running joke that painting students go to painting school to learn how to paint like they don’t know how to paint). Pott manages this approach with ease, while making the narratives entirely her own. The most magical part being that she uses animation in the exact ways that separates animations from other mediums – making the unreal living. The sort of “other” world that can be only be brought to such believable life through time and movement in animation.

    As a recent student in animation I truly aspire to accomplish similar feats Pott has surpassed. I managed to get a few moments with her after class to talk to her about her recent work with Cartoon Network. She explained to me the process of pitching a show, and gave me general advice on how to improve my pitch. It was a truly inspiring exchange. I feel fortunate to have met such a kind person, and look forward to becoming a fan of her show.


  26. xiruiliu says:

    I am so appreciate that seminar can invite Julia Pott, she’s artwork is really awesome. especial for the death of the animal. I remembered that one of her film named Belly. the unique style and personal camera movement inspired me a lot. the most favorite part for me is that she can tell her own story using a peaceful way. the most powerful strength is coming from silence and the also the key of her film. found and lost is a question. when you brave to find dream maybe you will lose everything. but, sometimes lost means remind. this is why Belly is coming to one of my favorite animation, I like the theme and attitude.

    otherwise, I like her characters design, every character in her sketch book are alive. one advertisement that she made is for cookie, the twin sister are amazing and movement of her animation is so fluency.

    Thanks Julia, she inspired me a lot.


  27. Min Shi says:

    Very talented Illustrator and animator! I really appreciate the main concept of her work, all of them about relationship and emotion. it is seems that she really injects her emotion to her work.

    Her character design is unique and full of detail, the color is so pure and clean. She is also good at express her characters’ personality. The personality are been developed so well that even we can find part of our personality from her character which make us can get her concept more easily ! it is very interesting that she combine cute character with deep story which makes the plot more intense.

    She is obviously not a technique artist, but what we can see from her work is something deeper, something about human, something that happening around us, something that happening in our head.


  28. yudu says:

    I was so excited about Julia Pott’s visit! I have been following her art for a long time. I love both her illustration and animation works. And her personality is as cute and sweet as her work. She is the kind of artist that I am looking forward to become in the future. I can see her passion and her love about her work. I can tell her happiness in her work and while she is talking about her work. Besides the pretty images, the emotion that you can delivery to your audience through your work is more priceless than any other things.
    It’s an excellent presentation. I love how Julia sheared the detail of her path with us, including how she grown up, her school and how she became an artist. Those experiences are very relatable and give me ideas about my future.


  29. Aya Kashima says:

    Even though I isn’t know Julia Pott until she showed animations in the seminar. I was surprised that I have seen some of them before and I appreciate this opportunity to see her to know how she creates animation. As her explained in the lecture, how we get inspiration is important. I thought she is good at finding her own voice to specify her style. I could tell that she creates what she wants by following her own style. I think it is the reason why people are attracted by her animation.


  30. mengna Lei says:

    I really like her work,her animation is organic and pure, I can see the comfort and confidence from her animation. I like the sketchy drawing and the funny topic. her work makes me calm and release and free. the animation with good and delicate drawing or have a very heavy effects makes me feel exciting and ambitious. however, her animation makes me feel free which makes the core of her animation unique from the others.

    I can really feel how happy and relax she feel when she was making her work. and I hope one day I can achieve this psychological states when I am making my work.


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