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Ryan Woodward — Storyboard Artist & Animator


Ryan Woodward began his career in traditional animation for movies, including cult classics The Iron Giant and Space Jam, before becoming a storyboard artist on Spider-Man 2, Iron Man 2, and Avengers Assemble, and creating the stirring short, “Thought of You.” Today, he’s pursuing many avenues for his creative powers.

In this podcast, recorded at THU in Japan, he talks about how he’s found happiness after some perilous life moments. He also dives deep into story, and how his understanding of metaphysics and neuroscience led to a breakthrough that can avoid formulaic Hollywood tales. Anyone with a creative streak will recognize Ryan’s career path, and his advice on how to navigate it is invaluable.


Ryan Woodward on Instagram >

Ryan Woodward on Twitter >

Ryan Woodward on LinkedIn >

Ryan Woodward on ArtStation >

”Thought of You” YouTube >


0:05:54 Early work on "Space Jam" and "Iron Giant"

0:10:37 Switching to storyboards, and last-minute learning

0:14:24 The life of a storyboard artist

0:15:47 How to choose lenses for shots

0:19:07 Ryan's favorite movies to work on

0:20:12 Managing personal projects and personal life

0:24:18 Dealing with creative burnout

0:28:43 Kintsugi and life 2.0

0:34:38 Metaphysics, neuroscience, and what's missing in today's stories

0:38:48 Midpoint: "Save The Cat" and breaking the Hollywood formula

0:44:10 Ryan's perspective on creating characters

0:51:54 Is AI a threat?

0:56:40 Conflct and "Dune"

1:01:37 The meaning of "Thought of You" 

About the author

Christopher Nichols

Chris is a CG industry veteran and Director of Chaos Labs. He can also be heard regularly as the host of the CG Garage podcast which attracts 20,000 weekly listeners. With a background in both VFX and Design, Chris has worked for Gensler, Digital Domain, Imageworks and Method Studios. His credits include Maleficent, Oblivion and Tron: Legacy.

Originally published: October 23, 2023.
© Škoda Design

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