About Leighton Hickman
Leighton Hickman is a visual development artist, illustrator, painter, teacher and mentor. He has spent the bulk of his career developing animated features for DreamWorks Animation where he worked extensively on “Shrek: Forever After” and the Chris Sanders movie “The Croods” as well as a number of titles in developement including: “Monkeys of Mumbai” and “Puss in Boots 2”. His formal art education was at the Art Center College of Design where he received a bachelors degree in Illustration with an emphasis in Entertainment Design. Informally he has been drawing and painting his whole life and started his career airbrushing t-shirts when he was 15. Since then he’s painted everything from motorcycles to murals and have participated in numerous fine art exhibits.
My main contributions to the development of a film have been creating visual development paintings, lighting keys, visual effects paintings as well as set and prop designs. I have experience working directly with other departments within animation to develop a scene such as story, modeling, surfacing and lighting.
Ideal Mentee: My ideal mentee has a strong passion for art and animation. They are punctual and dedicated to the mentor/mentee relationship, excited to participate in the program and have the time to devote to developing themselves as an artist and future colleague.
10-week plan: It’s my goal to provide what my mentee requires most from mentorship and in the past this has been accomplished through weekly meetings wherein we discuss goals, both career and artistic, and portfolio reviews to determine how to attain those goals and track progress. I provide advice on projects and homework, help to develop new work and provide a realistic view into the world of visual development and the working artist.
Maximum Number of Mentees: 2
Maximum Distance: International
Language(s): English only
Preferred Meeting Times: During my lunch hour at work and select week nights.
To apply to become Leighton’s mentee, click here.