Fruit Wagon

As you know, we have been trying to get healthy here at JibJab with our Wagon Wednesday tradition. We recently incorporated Glenny’s (for our Glennie) into the regular wagon and now we have also added a wheel barrel of fresh fruit! The staff gets a choice of California grown seasonal fruit from the morning farmer’s market in Santa Monica. Check out the group enjoying some fresh grapes, plums, nectarines, plumcots (have you ever heard of such a fruit?) bananas, peaches and many other yummy fruits.

Nom Nom Nom

Fruit is Fantastic!

Do you have a favorite fruit? Let us know in the comments below.

New eCard – Never Ending Fun

As with most birthdays you never want the fun to stop. And in our newest eCard, Never Ending Fun, we see that sometimes the fun really does never seem to end. We got to talk with Art Grootfontein to find out about the artist behind the long dog.

– How long did this card take to animate?

It took about two weeks.

– Where was the picture of grass taken from?

It’s an epic story! It took me six days to find the right park and one more day to shoot the grass with the correct light…Just kidding… I simply found this picture on the internet in a photo bank.

– Do you have a dog of your own?

I have two cartoon dog characters at home. They’re so much more fun than real ones (and they don’t smell)!

– What did you do for never ending fun?

I was in charge of character design and animation. The animatic was already made, so I just had to focus on creating the kid & dog, and giving them life. The ecard animation is pretty close to the animatic, I just proposed to give the kid his “Oh you…” expression at the end.

– Lastly, where did you go to school and when did you graduate?

I studied in the National School of Art & Design in Paris, France, and I graduated in 1999.

To see more of Art’s work check out his site here: http://www.grootfontein.net and send this eCard today!

Fancy Friday

Most offices have casual Friday where folks are encouraged to cut loose, let their hair down and throw on a pair of jeans. Well at JibJab we do that every day, so last Friday we decided to take things in the opposite direction and get fancy! The 2nd annual Formal Friday followed suit from last year when guys and dolls dressed in their best to impress. This year, we really heated things up with tuxedo shirts, floor length gowns and three piece suits. Check out our good looking crew below.

Funny Faces!

We are so hot!

The Bros…

New eCard – The Fountain of Youth

With our new birthday eCard you can help that special person feel like a baby again with one sip from the fountain of youth! We got to sit with Nate to find out a little more about his process:

1) Did you come up with the concept, art and animation for this eCard?

I designed the characters, environment and animation for the card, and it was a blast!  The concept for the card came from another JibJabber, Jeff Gill, who did the animatic for it.

2) Where did you go to school and when did you graduate?

I graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design with a Master’s in Animation last year.  The day after classes ended I packed my car and drove to LA to start working with JibJab, no joke!

3) How long have you been at JibJab?

I’ve been at JibJab since September of 2011…holy cow I can’t believe it’s almost a year already, time flies.

4) Where is the Fountain of Youth located?

I’d tell you, but then I’d have to kill you, and that’s not really the point of the whole fountain is it?  The location featured in the card is based on a lake back in my hometown in Ohio, but I like the idea of it just being some rusty old drinking fountain in a high school hallway or something.

5) Would you drink from its’ waters?

Are you saying that I look old?  OH GOD DO I LOOK OLD?!?

Check out more of Nate’s work here: www.nateswinehart.com and make someone feel young again with the Fountain of Youth on their birthday!

New Birthday eCard – Gettin’ Piggy With It

No birthday party is complete without dancing! In our new eCard, Gettin’ Piggy With It, we see that even pigs know how to get down. We talked more with the animator, Chris O’Hara, to find out more about his inspiration and favorite pop culture pig.

  • Where do you call home?

Home right now is Dublin, Ireland. I’m originally from a smaller town called Longford but have been living in Dublin for more than 8 years now.

  • How long have you been animating? And how long did this card take to make?

I graduated from college about 4 years ago and I’ve been animating professionally since then. The card was completed in my spare time over about 3 weeks.

  • Where did you pull inspiration?

Luckily there’s a break-dancing pig 2 doors down from me so I was able to get inspiration and video reference from him for the card (fart and all)!

  • Favorite pop culture pig? And Why?

A) Miss Piggy   B) Babe the pig    C) Porky Pig    D) Wilbur    E) Piglet

Favorite pig would have to be Babe. I love that film and that pig is an amazing actor!

So send this fun new eCard and check out more of Chris’ work at his blog or check out his short film that is currently on the festival circuit here: http://adifferentperspectivefilm.com/.

Biking to Work

We recently took a poll in the JibJab office of how many people walk or ride their bikes to work. We found out we have quite a high number of employees whose commute is man powered! While LA is famous for horrible commute times, traffic jams, and high gas prices, most of our office saves money and gets a little fresh air & exercise before each day in front of the computer. Take a look below to see how far we commute every day!

Walkers
-Jeremy walks 1 mile.
-Dana walks 4 miles.
-Lauren walks 4 miles.
-Jason walks 1 mile.
-Jacob walks 1 mile.
-Ashlyn walks 1 mile.
-Mike walks .4 miles.

Bike Riders
-Kurt bikes 6 miles.
-Robbie bikes 35 miles – just over an hour on bike each way!
-Grace bikes 1.6 miles.
-Dan rides or walks his bike 0.6 miles.
-Glennie bikes 2 miles.
-Eddie bikes 2 miles.

How do you get to work? Leave a comment below. And while you are at work, did you know we have an entire section of eCard fun to send to the office?

New Birthday eCard – Beer is Totally Awesome!

With our newest birthday eCard, Beer is Totally Awesome, you can say Happy Birthday with some fun fruit puns and an adult beverage. Our very own Ashlyn came up with the concept and animation for this card. She has been with JibJab a little over a year creating eCards galore and writing & illustrating children’s books for our iPad app, JibJab Jr. Books. We sat down with her to find out a bit more about this fun eCard.

1. Where did you go to school and when did you graduate?

I graduated in 2011 from Sheridan College in frigid Toronto, Canada!

2. What is your favorite type of beer?

I don’t like beer in particular, but I’m partial to a lovely cider, maybe a Strongbow.

3. Where did you come up with the idea for the eCard?

When I was brainstorming card ideas, I kept coming up with really great (awful) fruit related puns. Then, I was trying to come  up with a good beer pun, but my brain got stuck. So this happened.

4. How long did the card take you to animate?

This card was pretty speedy! After I gathered the fruit I needed, it was a week from start to finish!

5. Who did the voices and how was that a process in making the eCard?

Voices were crucial in this card, because well, no body likes to read speech bubbles, because it’s a lot of work. So myself, and the ever talented Sean Rhodes, fellow intern from last summer, recorded lots of silly voices  for the different fruits. It definitely helped define the fruits’ characters, and the contrast between the beer and the fruit was important! After we recorded the voices, Robbie, our resident sound man at JibJab came in and recorded all the final voices himself. Somehow, he managed to make the range from apple to beer no problem. How? It’s a trade secret. I was told if I told anyone, I’d get fruit-punched.

You can check more of Ashlyn’s art out here: ashlyna.blogspot.com and check out her latest children’s book Pirates and Mermaids.

Glenny’s for Glennie

Wagon Wednesday has been an office tradition since 2009! Recently, we’ve been trying to be healthier by including some fruit, but the unhealthy snacks always make it back to our desks. Upon learning that we had an employee named Glennie, who is a big fan of healthy snacks, Glenny’s kindly donated a variety of their sensible snacks to help with our cravings!

The team was excited to try something new, healthy and delicious. We highly recommend their tasty treats, especially the low-calorie Brownie!  “Like” Glenny’s on Facebook and you can enter to win a $100 Giveaway of Glenny’s snacks!

New eCard – Hungry Beaver!

With the arrival of our newest birthday eCard, Hungry Beaver, we decided to pick the brain of the artist Ken Turner. Though this card is short and sweet, it sure takes a bite out of birthdays!

1) Where did you get the idea?

Well the idea and execution was all there in the story reel animatic.  I tried to add my own spin on the design of the beaver.  I gave him bigger eyes and teeth.  After he’s done and he’s plopped down all fat and satisfied, I animated him rubbing his tummy and flapping his tail which was wasn’t in the original reel.

2) Have you ever seen a beaver in the wild? If so, where?

One day in the woods, I came upon one.  He was small and very furry.  He quietly came over and then stood on his hind legs.  He then whispered into my ear, “Welcome to Narnia”.  (Well I’m kidding of course!)  No, I can’t say I have.  You’d think living in Canada you would surely see one, while camping or what not, but I haven’t.   Probably the only time I’ve seen one swimming about would be at a zoo as a kid.

So check out more of Ken Turner’s art here: http://kenturner.blogspot.com and then watch his new animated series “The World of Snowboy & Crow,” which can be seen at: http://www.filmannex.com/webtv/kenturner/.

Team Building Day at Six Flags

 

We definitely work hard here at JibJab to bring you fun and funny eCards, original videos and Starring You® Storybooks for kids, but sometimes all work and no play can stifle a company. So, last week Evan and Gregg decided to surprise the team with an outing! We arrived at work welcomed by breakfast and a giant coach bus. Not knowing where it would take us we got on the bus and an hour later we pulled into Six Flags Magic Mountain! For the rest of the day we screamed at the top of our lungs, got splashed on the log flume and spun on the swings. It was a really fun team building day! Check out some of our terrified faces in the slideshow below.

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New eCard – Forever Immature

In our newest birthday eCard, Forever Immature, we see that age is just a number and that growing older does not necessarily mean growing up. We talked with talented Beto Gomez to find out more about the process and the coming of age of his art.

1.) Where did you go to school?

I graduated at Vancouver Film School`s classical animation program in 2011.

2.) How long did this card take to animate?

It took me around 2 weeks, from character design and visual development of the piece, to the final animation.

3.) Where did your inspiration come from?

Inspiration for the designs come usually from all the influence I had growing up as kid reading comics from Brazilian artists such as Angeli and Laerte, and also the great group of cartoonist from Mad magazine, Sergio Aragones, Duck Edwing, Al Jaffee and many others. I guess for these designs I unconsciously pictured them living at the Del Boca Vista retirement condo (maybe I should specify it’s a Seinfeld reference), but again, I think they’re way more active than anyone living at Del Boca Vista.

4.) Have you ever pulled any of the pranks in the card?

I used to ring door bells a lot. The frequence of this prank just decreased as me and my friends got slower for the running away part.

To check out more of Beto’s art and cartoons check out his blog at http://whothehellisbetogomez.wordpress.com/ and send this eCard to all of your Forever Immature friends today!

New eCard – Birthday Rap!

There’s no better way to let someone know “It’s their birthday and you’ll party down cuz it’s their birthday” than with Birthday Rap, our newest eCard. This rapping 8 year old with attitude was created by the guys at Surf Monkey Films. After receiving the rap mp3, Max Well, Nolan Wang and Alex Lamb took it upon themselves to create a vision to match the fun lyrics of this birthday rap. We got to talk with the guys more about their process and where they came up with this concept.

1) Where did you all go to school?

The three of us, Max Well (Producer), Nolan Wang (Cinematographer) and myself (Director), all graduated from Chapman College of Film and TV.

2) Where did you shoot?

We shot this particular video in a park in Anaheim Hills with kids from Nicole Manly’s class at Orange County Song and Dance.

3) How long did this card take to shoot?

This card took about a half day to shoot. There was a lot of time spent getting the kids comfortable in front of the camera. Once they were comfortable, we even went back and reshot some stuff we thought we had already gotten, simply because it came out so much better once the kids dropped their guards. Also some shots took a while just because of the setups and timing required. I think the longest shot we had to get was the opening dolly move at the birthday table. Synchronizing the kids performances with the camera move was the ingest challenge.

4) Where did your inspiration come from?

I think that Nolan really liked the idea of shooting a Beastie Boys style video because he was a huge fan of theirs. That’s where all of the low angle track back shots came from. With that idea in pace for the style, I really liked the idea of using kids in a hip-hop environment. I really like Spike Jones’ “Sky’s the Limit” video for Notorious B.I.G.

5) Do you guys have a favorite rapper?

Nolan’s favorite rappers include: Beastie Boys, Biz Markee, Will Smith, and Rick the Ruler.

Max’s are Jay-Z and Ludacris.

My favorite rapper is Mc Chris. I didn’t realize that I liked rap until I heard rap songs about things I could relate to. Mc Chris has an ironic way of using a hip hop persona to express very nerdy experiences and feelings.

Bust out a Birthday Rap to a friend today!

Interns Join the Team This Summer

It’s that time again, when the summer sun heats up the beach and the days are so long it is light until 8:30pm. It’s also the time of year we fill our office with the fresh faces of the interns. We had an extremely difficult time narrowing down the talent, but after multiple school visits, portfolio days, interviews and miles of traveling, we’ve added a WHOPPING 10 new artists to the production team! Though this crew has the title of “intern,” they are valued members of our ever-expanding team. With much to learn and practice we are sure to see some amazing new content come from them! Meet the new additions:

Amelia Lorenz – CalArts – http://gogeckogirl.blogspot.com/

Dana Terrace – SVA – http://dana-draws.blogspot.com/

Jeremy Bondy – Sheridan – http://cargocollective.com/jeremybondy

Lauren Duda – SCAD – http://laurenduda.com

Eusong Lee – CalArts – http://eusong.blogspot.com/

Jacob Streilein – CalArts – http://jcstryline.blogspot.com/

Julia Srednicki – CalArts – http://srednicki.blogspot.com/

Kristen Gish – Ringling – kristengishportfolio.blogspot.com

Jason Reicher – CalArts – http://jasonreicher.blogspot.com/

Samantha Wei – Otis – http://cargocollective.com/sammiewei

New Birthday eCard – Old People Smell

In our newest birthday eCard, Old People Smell, you can let that someone special know that they are getting older & beginning to develop that old person smell. We talked more with Neil Housego to learn about the artistic ability reeking from him.

1. Where did you go to school?

I went to school at Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication and graduated with a BA in Three Dimensional Design, way back in 1997. I’m a self taught animator, but in recent times I’ve been lucky enough to get to know the amazing Matt Williames (Coraline, Princess and the Frog). His advice and passion for the discipline has really helped me to grow as an artist.

2. How long did this card take to animate?

I took one weekend to complete all the character design and development. Then the following two weekends to take it from the pencil test stage all the way through to painting and compositing.

3. Where did your inspiration come from?

As with all my work, the main inspiration for the piece comes from life and observing the things going on around me. It sounds so cliche but it really is an endless source of inspiration. Also I think one of my favourite artists the legendary Playboy cartoonist Erich Sokol may be in there somewhere.

4. Do you think old people really do smell?

Just a little bit, but that’s endearing, right?

If you would like to see more of Neil’s work you can visit his portfolio here: www.cargocollective.com/neilhousego.

Have a friend with a birthday? Send this eCard or another one of our funny birthday eCards. Smell ya later!

Katy Perry Becomes Part of JibJab

Looking for a new, FREE, fun Starring You video? How about one set to a number one song on Billboard ‘s special The 30 Summer Songs of All Time list? And one you can appear in alongside international pop superstar, Katy Perry?

Well, look no further than JibJab.com and cast yourself and friends in Katy Perry’s California Gurls music video! It is brought to you by the new movie: KATY PERRY: PART OF ME 3D in theaters July 4th weekend!

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