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Mentor of the Day: Cory Godbey

CoryGodbey_thp_drawing027Welcome back to our fantastic illustration mentor, Cory Godbey! We are so pleased to have him return and take on one mentee from anywhere in the world this Spring 2014 session! Cory has a great list of clients – having worked for HarperCollins, Random House, Archaia, and The Jim Henson Co, and a variety of animated shorts and commercials. His experience is incredible, and definitely assists his wealth of knowledge to share with his mentees!

Cory is excited to work with a mentee at any level of experience, but also a student of total dedication that is willing to put in the hard work. A student with an interest in pushing the storytelling in their work, and an interest in developing their visual vocabulary. He has a love for fairy tale and Tolkien-esque illustrators such as Arthur Rachham, Edmund Dulac, and John Bauer, as clearly evident in the work he produces!  In September 2013, Cory won a Gold Award from Spectrum Fantastic Art.

If you are looking to really develop your portfolio, and bring some new strength into your illustrations, Cory is a great mentor to have! He is incredibly dedicated and puts so much energy into making sure his mentees get as much out of his lessons as possible. His ten week plans are suited to the needs and goals of the individual,  and he has plenty of ideas to direct you on your way!

Be sure to check out some of Cory’s videos on Vimeo, youtube and his illustrative work on his tumblr!

Mentor of the Day: Craig Elliott

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Craig Elliott has been one of our most beloved Visual Development/Illustrator/Fine Art Mentors since we started the Mentorship program. We are so excited to have him back for our Spring 2014 mentorship! Craig is known for his incredibly lengthy list of credits, making him a fantastic wealth of knowledge! He has worked for studios such as Disney, DreamWorks, Blue Sky, Illumination Entertainment, Nickelodeon, Cirque De Soleil and many others!

You can often find Craig at many comic and art conventions, selling his work and painting a model for the passing convention attendees. He is friendly and approachable to everyone that passes by, and puts all of this similar approachability towards his mentees. He has so much to offer, and so much experience to share!


Very recently, Craig received a gold medal at the Society of Illustrators West! We are so proud of him, and are so glad to see him get such a wonderful honor.

Craig is looking for one hard working mentee from any where in the world to mentor over the ten weeks. If you are looking to improve your portfolio and develop some great painting techniques, mentoring with Craig will be a wonderful experience for you!

Mentor of the Day: Brenda Chapman

brenda-chapman-directorBrenda Chapman has returned for a second time as Mentor for Motivarti, and we are so thrilled to have her back! Brenda is known for being a Director on Pixar’s ‘Brave’ and DreamWorks’ ‘Prince of Egypt’, as well as Head of Story for ‘The Lion King’. She is an inspiring storyteller, and one of the most hardworking people you’ll ever meet. If you are an aspiring Director or storyteller, Brenda is a dream come true Mentor, and she is looking for one mentee from anywhere in the world!

We checked in with Brenda’s Fall 2012 Mentee Colin Levy to find out how his mentorship went. Colin gave us a great overview on his ten weeks, “We took an idea for an animated feature film from a rough two-sentence synopsis to a functioning outline. During the process I wrote character breakdowns, drew story beat boards, plotted my scenes to fit an overall character arc using notecards, and worked to clarify the theme of the story. Although there is not a whole lot to show, this stuff takes time and I feel I am on the right track to create a coherent, entertaining and emotional story for a feature film.”

We asked him to elaborate on his favorite aspect of the Mentorship and he told us, “The chance to converse with such an accomplished director, and to pick her brain a little bit. It was such a privilege!” And his advice for Brenda’s next Mentee, “Come in with a solid premise for a story and try to set as many concrete goals as you can.“

Mentoring with Brenda is truly a once in a blue moon sort of opportunity. She has worked on some of the most influential animated films, and continues to be one of the most greatly admired storytellers of our time. If you have a project you want to expand on, and an itch to bring a story to life, Brenda will be an amazing mentor with you.

Mentor of the Day: Katy Wu

KatyWu_3Welcome back to another returning Mentor, the wonderfully talented Katy Wu! She is a Doodler for Google, which means people from all over the world have seen her work on the front page of! She has also been a visual development artist for studios such as Pixar and Laika. Katy is a well-rounded and inspiring artist that is sure to be a great influence on her future mentee! She is looking for one hard working mentee anywhere in the United States to mentor for the ten weeks.

Katy’s Fall 2013 Mentee Lettie Lo told us her favorite thing about her mentorship, “Being able to get feedback from Katy, and seeing things from her point of view. It really made my dream of working on feature visual development reachable.” Although initially Lettie was a little intimidated, “It’s a bit nerve wrecking to have Katy judge my work every meeting, but that feeling get immediately replaced by being inspired and excited to keep working.”

Check out Lettie’s mentorship work below!

The experience really left an impression with Lettie, she told us, “I really enjoyed Motivarti and I’m glad this program exists! The one on one component really targets the learning and portfolio crafting more than any other online classes out there.”

If you’ve been itching to improve your visual development portfolio, and get some amazing feedback, Katy is the perfect Mentor for you! Check out some of Katy’s work on her blog!

Mentor of the Day: Octavio Rodriguez

Octavio_Page011We are pleased to have seasoned Pixar Story Artist, Octavio Rodriguez return for another exciting session of our Motivarti Mentorship! He recently worked on “Monsters University” and the upcoming “Dia de Los Muertos”, and has been apart of so many other fantastic projects! Octavio is willing to take on up to two mentees from anywhere in the world, a fantastic opportunity for aspiring Story Artists, no matter where they live.

Fall 2013 Mentee Casey Crowe loved his time in the program, one of the things he reflected on was that, “Octavio really helped me be more aware and critical of my shot composition. I feel that I’m much better at creating dynamic, cinematic compositions after this class.“ He also highlighted, “I REALLY appreciated Octavio’s draw-overs of my panels, it was so helpful and inspiring to see how he would revise my work to make it better.”
Check out some of Casey’s Mentorship work below!

Casey offers a message to Octavio’s upcoming mentees, “Congratulations! You’re in for an amazing learning experience. Do as much work as you can so you can get the maximum amount of feedback. Really follow Octavio’s advice and you’ll see some amazing improvements in your work.”

Check out Octavio’s tumblr here.