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The most awesome art department manager there is, Goose Ramirez, pushes the envelope and keeps the troops smiling over at Mondomedia

By Mark Ewert


What do you consider your job to be?

I'm kind of like the art-talent psychologist. Or guidance counselor. It's my job to make sure that the art team is productive, and happy, and that the quality of work is up to par--supreme, actually. I try to do this by showing them inspirational work, giving them pep talks, bringing in movies to point out cool bits.

The most important thing is, because I've been here so long, I know everyone pretty intimately. Most of these people were my friends before they started to work here. That makes my job easier. And now that I'm doing more recruiting, I get to bring in more new kids to play.

How did you start?

I started as a boy in third grade, doing my own little comics, and got into the creative art world from there. In terms of a career-wise path, I was interested in doing special effects for film, because Lucas and [Industrial Light and Magic] were in California, and I was a California kid. In pursuing special effects, I learned animation. That's the long and the short answer of how I ended up at Mondo. But I've always been interested in storytelling from a comics perspective.

How long have you been doing this?

In the computer animation industry, about nine years.

Who or what was your inspiration to enter this field?

Mostly the work of ILM--doing creatures, makeup, spaceships. They were like grown-ups playing with toys, and I thought, "Cool, that's what I want to do."

Pet peeves about this career?

Artists are really the ones that have the talent, but sometimes the big guys get the credit. And the cash. Artists often get the short end of stick in this industry. So that's one of the things I try to balance out. A fun working place can definitely help compensate.

Perks?

At Mondo, cultural freedom is a great thing we have. People can dye their hair, pierce their body, whatever you want, as long it doesn't impose on other people. Having lots of toys around is not only tolerated, it's actually encouraged--toys, comics, posters. It's not corporate.

If you weren't doing this, what would you be up to?

If I wasn't doing this exactly? I'd be teaching, teaching animation.

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From the April 3, 2000 issue of the Metropolitan.

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