// you’re reading...


Katie Rice, animator from Spumco, lists favorite books

READERSVOICE.COM aims to give people a few good reading tips. You might want to check out the article list for more reading suggestions.For this issue I contacted animator Katie Rice, who has worked for Disney Television and is currently working for Spumco in Los Angeles.Also I contacted Brian Singer (also known as Someguy) who lives in San Francisco. Brian Singer sent 1000 blank journals out into the world. People add stories and art work to the journals and pass them on. And people notify Brian Singer about the current location of journals, scanning pages of the journals for him to display on his website www.1000journals.com. First up animator Katie Rice, who recently worked on a Spumco animated video for Weird Al Yankovic.You can see some of Katie Rice’s recent drawings and doodles on her blog at http://funnycute.blogspot.com.

READERSVOICE.COM: Could you list four or five books you would recommend to people, whether about drawing, or fiction, or anything else, and maybe say a bit about why you liked them?

KATIE RICE: The book I always mention when people ask me for my favorite book is The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut.
I have loved this book since I was pretty young, and read it about once a year. I love all of Vonnegut’s books actually, and have read most of them more than once.
It’s hard for me to put into words why The Sirens of Titan is my favorite. I love the story, the characters, and the concepts in this book. It also has a strange way of conjuring a bizarre mixture of emotions in me that always get me choked up and want to cry and laugh a the same time. Go read it!

I think my other favorite fictional book is Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Suskind. I borrowed this book from my mom when I was in high school and just became fascinated with it. The story takes place in 18th century France, and the main character of the story is just hideous and wonderful at the same time.
I don’t want to give the story away…just go out and buy it!
Another book I just finished recently was Demonic Males: Apes and the Origins of Human Violence by Dale Peterson and Richard Wrangham. I didn’t go to college and didn’t pay enough attention in school, so I missed out on a lot of interesting information regarding science and human behavior and other subjects that I’m interested in but know little about.

This book was really fascinating, and confirmed all my sneaking suspicions about the human brain. It’s sort of a scary read, but really interesting.
Is it alright to list books I haven’t finished yet?
I’m partially through A World Lit Only By Fire by William Manchester, and I’m really enjoying it so far, even though it makes me confused as to whether I ought to be laughing or feeling sort of sick inside.
The book focuses on the hideousness of life during the middle ages, and is very insightful if you’re interested in history or religion, or the human mind.
I’m glad nowadays I don’t have to worry about “the very air being thick with demons.”
The last book I’ll recommend is the Preston Blair Book of Animation, which John K. [John Kricfalusi, creator of Ren and Stimpy, and the Spumco animation company] told me to study when I was first getting into cartoons. Anyone who is interested in drawing cartoons should have a copy of this book, as it is wonderful for explaining all the basic drawing concepts you ought to know.
It’s also very easy to understand, and nice to look at, too!

RV: Where do you live now in Los Angeles, and what other places have you lived in Los Angeles and elsewhere?

KR: Right now I live in Burbank. Half a year ago I lived in Glendale, and before that I lived and went to high school in Incline Village, Nevada, and before that I was growing up in Pasadena.

RV: You started drawing at an early age. Was there ever a time when you gave drawing away for a few years or have you always worked solidly at it?

KR: I don’t think I ever really stopped drawing for any long period of time. I definitely wasn’t as serious about it when I was younger, though. I really liked drawing and music, and sort of enjoyed both as hobbies. But a few years ago I learned to appreciate other people’s artistic skills and the hard work that goes into it more than I ever had before, and it drove me to really start working hard to better my own abilities.

RV: How much drawing and sketching would you do each day, and do you walk about with a sketchbook drawing people much, or do you reference magazine pictures?

KR: I definitely draw every day, at least a little. I used to carry a sketchbook around, but always ended up tearing out half the pages! Now when I’m not in the house, I just draw on napkins or receipts.
I draw more from magazines and TV shows than I do from real life. The main reason for this is because it’s intimidating to draw around other people!
But if I see someone who looks interesting to me out in public somewhere, I’ll either do the best I can to draw them from memory later, or be sneaky and take a digital photo of them. I can’t get in trouble for that, can I?

-continued next page.